A sole trader who ignored requests for tachograph and drivers’ hours records has been disqualified from operating vehicles for two years.
Welsh Traffic Commissioner Nick Jones said the Wrexham firm’s lack of any acknowledgment to DVSA was a key factor in his decision. He added that good operators respond to requests from an enforcement agency. “It is wholly unacceptable to simply ignore the DVSA requests,” Mr Jones said in a written decision.
A traffic examiner began investigating the operator after one of its vehicles was stopped on the A5 in Shropshire. Both the vehicle and trailer were issued with S marked prohibitions, indicating a significant failure in the maintenance systems. The driver also didn’t have the DCPC qualification and wasn’t using a tachograph card to record his duties.
The traffic examiner sent four production letters to the operator but didn’t get any responses and had no contact from them. The firm did subsequently tell the Traffic Commissioner’s office that it wouldn’t be attending a public inquiry into the issues reported by DVSA.
Mr Jones made an order to revoke the operator’s licence and disqualify the sole trader from holding or obtaining another licence for two years.
In a separate case the traffic commissioner for West Midland, Nick Denton, reduced a licence from 27 to 22 vehicles for an operator owing to poor maintenance of a vehicle. The company’s fitter had failed to deal with a faulty ABS warning light which was reported every day for two months; there were serious issues with the exhaust and the braking system; and tape had been used to cover the AdBlue warning light, allowing the vehicle to continue in service with emissions above the permitted limit.
The transport manager’s repute was left severely damaged.
The Senior Traffic Commissioner’s guidance on transport managers sets out what is expected of a competent transport manager and is available to read here.