Basic rules

  • An employee’s hours of work must be confined within a period of 16 consecutive hours in a workday.
  • An employee can request their hours of work to be confined within a period of 12 consecutive hours in any workday. They can also request a 24 hour rest period once within each work week.
  • An employee must receive 8 consecutive hours of rest immediately following completion of a shift.
  • An employee must receive 4 days of rest in each period of 4 consecutive weeks. The days of rest do not need to be consecutive.
  • If an employee works 4 or fewer hours in any work day, the remainder of the day may be considered to be a half day of rest.

Employee eligibility

A roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employee is someone employed in the construction, maintenance, repair or demolition, for residential, commercial, industrial, oilfield, oil sands, agriculture or forestry purposes, of:

  • highways or roadways, including private roadways
  • highway or roadway appurtenances (for example, signs, guardrails and bridge railings)
  • material processing
  • sidewalks or curbs
  • bridges
  • site development
  • earth or rock fill dams
  • water or sewer management systems
  • drainage or irrigation systems
  • urban rail or transit systems
  • traffic control accommodations

The following are not considered roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employees:

  • office or administrative employees

The following additional rules may also apply to roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employees:

Minimum standards for hours of work

The maximum daily hours of work that a roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employee may be scheduled is 16 hours, unless an accident occurs, urgent work is necessary to a plant or machinery, or other unforeseeable or unpreventable circumstances occur.

An employee can request their hours of work to be confined within a period of 12 consecutive hours on any work day.

While these employees may work up to 16 hours per day, the following should be considered:

  • The employer and employee must comply with safe work practices in accordance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Occupational Health and Safety Code.
  • Under Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) legislation, an employer must ensure the health and safety of its workers. This includes monitoring hours of work if extended hours of work can affect the health and safety of a worker or their co-workers.
  • Workers have a right and a responsibility to refuse work if it appears unsafe.
  • For information about fatigue and safety, please see the Workplace Health and Safety Bulletin, Fatigue and Safety at the Workplace. A copy of this publication can also be obtained from any OHS office in Alberta. To find an office near you, please phone the OHS Contact Centre toll-free at 1-866-415-8690.

Some roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employees may be subject to either the federal or provincial Drivers' Hours of Service Regulations, which govern the maximum driving times and minimum off-duty times of commercial vehicle drivers (both bus and truck).

For more information on drivers hours of service, contact Carrier Services, a section of Alberta Transportation:

Phone: 403-340-5444
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Fax: 403-340-4806
Email: carrier.services@gov.ab.ca

Rest periods

Employee must receive at least 8 consecutive hours of rest immediately following completion of a shift.

If an employee works 4 or fewer hours in any work day, the remainder of the day may be considered to be a half day of rest.

Days of rest

An employee must receive:

  • at least 4 days of rest in each period of 4 consecutive weeks
  • the days of rest do not need to be consecutive

An employee can request one 24-hour period of rest in each work week, if they did not receive:

  • one day of rest in the work week, or
  • 4 consecutive days of rest in a period of 4 consecutive work weeks

Additional employment standards rules

In addition to the special provisions outlined above, all other minimum standards for employment apply to roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employees. Learn more about these rules on the following Alberta government web pages:

How the law applies

Part 3, Division 12 of the Employment Standards Regulation outlines the provisions that apply to roadbuilding or heavy construction operations employees.

Disclaimer: In the event of any discrepancy between this information and Alberta Employment Standards legislation, the legislation is considered correct.