Traffic Commissioners' annual reports published

The Traffic Commissioners for Great Britain published their annual report at the end of December 2017 and have reinforced the importance of having robust systems to achieve and maintain compliance.

The regulators are asking HGV, bus and coach operators to prioritise compliance and focus on getting the basics right. In the year 2016/2017 there was 977 public enquiries and the report highlights some shocking cases of non-compliance. Restricted and standard national licence operator licence holders held the highest percentage when it came to being called to a public enquiry and the overall percentage of revocations in Great Britain increased to 36% meaning that operators called to public inquiry faced a real risk of losing their licence.

The report showed that disqualification of both operators and transport managers remained significant, highlighting the serious issue of operators and transport managers who have no intention of running a compliant regime. The disqualification rate for operators has doubled from 8% last year to 16%. The disqualification rate for transport managers is 9%, indicating that they continue to cause traffic commissioners concern.

With the statistics published in the report and traffic commissioners determined to take unlawful operators down its time for licence holders to take the undertakings on their operator licence seriously.

When we speak to operators it’s often the case that they don’t fully understand their legal responsibilities and it’s hardly surprising when legislation changes so frequently and operators only find out about it when their drivers are stopped. However, ‘I didn’t know’ isn’t an excuse and it will not stand up as a valid reason to the traffic commissioner should you find yourself at a public inquiry.

Training fees can be quite costly (regardless of who you use) however, the cost of non-compliance far outweighs the cost of training. Our job as a training provider is to help and guide our customers every step of the way to ensure they are fully compliant. We ensure compliance for our customers by offering a range of training and consultancy services for everyone involved in the transport side of the business.

In addition to our traditional services we also offer a range of online courses that are designed to help operators help themselves without the pressure of having to find thousands of pounds to train their workforce.

So how can you ensure compliance for your business and staff?

It is a legal requirement that all standard national and standard international operator licence holders have a fully qualified Transport Manager within their business. The same rule does not apply to restricted operators however, with restricted operators holding the highest percentage (44%) for being called to public inquiry and having licences revoked we advise all restricted operators to also have a fully qualified TM, after all restricted operators are required to adhere to the same conditions and legislation as those running under a standard national and standard international operator licence.

Another legal requirement is that all staff must have received training to carry out their duties within their role. It is perfectly acceptable to offer this training in-house however, you should look to have a continuous professional development programme in place for all employees whereby they receive training on a regular basis to refresh their skills and knowledge and ensure they are aware of the latest legislation.

Self-audits are the easiest, cheapest and quickest way to find out if your operation is compliant. It’s your starting point and the easy way to find holes in your operation so you can take the necessary action to set things right.

Read our blog the easy way to set up and keep your transport company legal, there’s a handy checklist within that blog that will guide you step-by-step through all the things you need to do to be compliant.

I could go on and have you reading for an hour however, I know you’re a busy person and I know you’re looking for a solution and we’re the ones that have it. I know you want to be compliant because you want to keep your licence because as you know without your licence, you have no business.

Let me get to the point…….we are here to HELP YOU, to GUIDE YOU and to make sure YOU ARE COMPLIANT. Whether you are an operator, transport manager, driver, administrator, storeman….whatever your role within a transport business, it’s of paramount importance that you understand the legal requirements and work within the law to ensure the business is compliant and you keep your job! We can help you and all you have to do is visit www.myoperatorlicence.co.uk . Training starts from just £10 and advice/support from our team is completely free.

Prefer to talk to us? Then give our friendly team a call on 01406 424500. Your call will be dealt with in the strictest confidence and we’ll be able to discuss your requirements and find the perfect solution for you and your organisation.

Read the full Traffic Commissioners annual report here

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