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Key issues from public inquiry

Key issues from public inquiry
Part two of our series which aims to help you maintain and promote O licence compliance
Usually it’s the action against an operator which grabs the headlines in a public inquiry case. If a licence is revoked and someone is disqualified, that’s what gets the most attention.
But, behind the headlines, each case offers lessons for other operators, transport managers and drivers.
And that means there’s valuable guidance from commissioners on how to avoid compliance issues and reinforce your commitment to safe working practices.
In part two of our series, we look to a recent case where a Northamptonshire operator running five vehicles didn’t do enough to show the business would be compliant in the future.
The decision by East of England Traffic Commissioner, Richard Turfitt, makes several important points:
• be proactive if your maintenance contractor does not live up to standard
• closely inspect preventative maintenance sheets when they are returned (before the vehicle or trailer returns to service)
• a low first time pass rate at annual test requires immediate management
• remember you are responsible for the vehicles operated under your licence – customers should not be involved in the control of a transport operation
• your transport manager should always be prepared to ask questions to identify the true cause of any compliance issue
• if they don’t have the technical knowledge to resolve any issues, they should know where to find it and which questions to ask
• a transport manager who also acts as a driver may not be able to exercise continuous and effective management of the transport operations when there are other pressures on their time
Key Resources
DVSA Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness
Transport manager guidance