More and more companies operating a restricted licence, that is, moving their own goods, are appearing before the Traffic Commissioner.
Sections 26 & 28 of the Goods Vehicle (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995 deals with the range of powers the regulators have to suspend, curtail or revoke a licence, with disastrous consequences to businesses.
Frequently this stems from lack of understanding of the requirements for holding an operator's licence and adhering to it's undertakings. Without a qualified transport manager or consultant to protect them from the pitfalls, many firms are 'flying blind' with the rules and the pitfalls are never far away.
One thing frequently heard when assisting restricted licence holders is that ''we just weren't aware of what was expected'' but this falls flat in a Public Inquiry hearing when it is proved that business owners had access to the relevant information when granted their licence.....and didn't act on it.
Other restricted operators contend that they are fine managing the fleet without help, which is commendable if they get it right. However, frequently the realities of running a business as well as sticking to all the rules can be problematic. Getting the basics right is one thing, but is that enough to protect the licence in the long run?
With discussion around vans being brought into the operator licencing regime and under current EU rules on tachographs, the scope of the Traffic Commissioner's powers is set to be even more far-reaching in the future.
Stay ahead, ask advice.....get help if needed.