Drivers’ hours fines

Changes to Drivers’ hours fines for commercial drivers March 5 2018

The rules will change from 5 March 2018 so lorry, bus and coach drivers who drive tired will be fined for every time they’ve done it in the last 28 days.

If you drive a lorry, bus or coach, you must follow rules on how many hours you can drive and the breaks you need to take.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) can fine drivers up to £300 if they’re caught breaking the rules. They can also be prosecuted or have their vehicle immobilised.

At the moment, DVSA can only fine drivers for:

  • offences committed that day
  • ongoing offences, like manipulating tachograph records, which record drivers’ hours

Drivers will be fined for older offences

From Monday 5 March 2018, DVSA traffic examiners will start issuing on-the-spot fines for any drivers’ hours offences committed in the last 28 days.

In a single roadside check, DVSA traffic examiners will issue fines for up to 5 drivers’ hours offences. It means you could be fined up to £1,500 in a single check if you’ve consistently broken the rules.

It won’t matter if the offences took place in Great Britain or elsewhere.

The rules will also apply to drivers who don’t live in Great Britain. However, they’ll need to pay any fines immediately, before being allowed to continue their journey. DVSA will immobilise their vehicle until they pay.

Fines to deter drivers from not resting properly

As well as giving fines to drivers for recent offences, DVSA traffic examiners have started issuing fines to deal with drivers who don’t properly rest.

Lorry, bus and coach drivers must take a 45-hour rest break at least every fortnight.

Since 1 November 2017, DVSA has started to fine drivers up to £300 if they spend their full weekly rest break in their vehicle in places where it causes a problem. For example, if a lorry driver spends their full break in the cab of their lorry in a layby.

Illegal parking, noise and litter nuisance

Spending the weekly rest break in the cab can:

  • contribute to drivers not properly resting
  • expose drivers to poor living conditions

It can also cause problems in local communities. In some areas, lorry drivers have parked illegally or inappropriately while taking the 45-hour break, and have caused residents to complain about noise, litter and anti-social behaviour.

During 2016, authorities in Kent took action against 3,700 lorry drivers for parking illegally or inappropriately.

Targeting problem areas

DVSA traffic examiners will target places where this is causing the biggest problems, such as residential areas and laybys.

DVSA will also work with its counterparts in other countries to deal with overseas operators whose drivers regularly do this.

Devastating consequences of driving tired

Crashes involving tired lorry drivers can be devastating. Almost a quarter of injuries in accidents involving lorries are fatal or serious.

About 40% of sleep-related accidents involve commercial vehicles.

According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), driving while tired may be responsible for:

  • 1 in 5 of all accidents
  • up to a quarter of serious and fatal crashes

Source: Vehicle enforcement data for Great Britain

In addition to the devastation caused to families and communities, road collisions cost the economy an estimated £16.3 billion a year, and add pressure on the NHS and emergency services.

Protecting you from unsafe drivers and vehicles

DVSA Chief Executive, Gareth Llewellyn, said:

DVSA’s priority is to protect you from unsafe drivers and vehicles.

These tougher fines will help us to take stronger action against any drivers or operators who break drivers’ hours rules and will help make our roads safer.

There’s no excuse for driving while tired. The results of falling asleep at the wheel of 40 tonne lorry can be devastating to families and communities. Any drivers breaking these rules is putting other road users at risk and could face losing their licence and livelihood.

James Firth, the Freight Transport Association’s Head of Licensing Policy and Compliance Information, said:

For some years, DVSA officers have been virtually powerless to take effective action against non-UK HGV drivers who may have committed a string of offences in the days and weeks before the vehicle is stopped.

These new powers mean the enforcement authorities will be more able – and more likely – to take action against all drivers who are found to have repeatedly flouted these critical road safety laws.

Drivers’ hours fines

DVSA announce first businesses to benefit from transport scheme

DVSA announce first businesses to benefit from transport scheme. John Lewis, Sainsbury’s and a district council are among 30 organisations to start benefiting from a new way of recognising safe and responsible vehicle operators.

DVSA earned recognition for vehicle operators is a new way for organisations with lorries, buses and coaches to prove they meet driver and vehicle standards.

They’ll regularly share performance information with DVSA, such as their MOT initial pass rates and if their drivers have broken drivers’ hours rules.

In return, their vehicles are less likely to be stopped for roadside inspections. DVSA will still stop vehicles if they’re in an obviously dangerous condition.

Targeting those likely to be a danger to your safety

From today (31 January 2018), vehicle operators taking part in a pilot of the scheme will no longer have their vehicles routinely stopped at the roadside by DVSA.

This will let DVSA target its inspections and roadside checks at drivers and vehicles most likely to be a danger to your safety.

Household names, local businesses and a local council

The 30 private and public sector organisations on the pilot are responsible for over 6,000 lorries, buses or coaches.

The organisations include:

  • British Telecommunications
  • the City of Wakefield metropolitan district council
  • CT Plus – a social enterprise
  • DPD Group
  • John Lewis
  • Sainsbury’s

They’re all different sizes – the smallest having 2 vehicles, with the largest having more than 3,500 vehicles.

Helping responsible businesses

The scheme is being designed to help safe and responsible businesses go about their business unhindered, which will save them time and money.

It also means DVSA can spend more time taking unsafe drivers and vehicles off our roads.

There’s still time for operators to join the pilot

Vehicle operators can apply to join the DVSA earned recognition pilot until 28 February 2018. Those applying to join the pilot will get extra help through the application process.

All the benefits of the full scheme

The full scheme is expected to launch later in 2018.

When it’s launched, vehicle operators who have joined will be able to:

  • prove they’re an exemplary operator, which can help when they bid for contracts, and raise their profile with potential customers
  • use the DVSA earned recognition marque in their marketing and publicity, showing they’re serious about road safety
  • have their details shown on GOV.UK, so people know they’ve achieved the high standards needed to join the scheme
  • get access to a dedicated DVSA earned recognition team to discuss issues and ideas to help their business

Their vehicles will continue to be less likely to be stopped at the roadside for checks.

Protecting you from unsafe drivers and vehicles

DVSA Chief Executive, Gareth Llewellyn, said:

DVSA’s priority is to protect you from unsafe drivers and vehicles.

This pilot is allowing the best operators to go about their business unhindered, so we can target our activity at those most likely to be a danger to all road users.

I would like to thank everyone who has helped us develop the pilot to the point where operators are starting to feel the benefits.

FORS audit experience

The FORS audit experience, how was yours?

What can you expect when you have your FORS audit? Should it be like a visit from the DVSA?*

Well, the FORS audit experience doesn’t have to be painful in anyway and you should expect to have an informative and pleasurable meeting with your FORS auditor. That said, this isn’t always the case. In my experience of FORS audits, (and I have been to a quite a few) I would say that it is possible you may encounter the odd auditor who can make you feel somewhat uncomfortable.

Now we can all agree there is always room for improvement but getting unwanted advice and obnoxious and dismissive comments isn’t necessarily what you signed up for. As far as I’m aware the general ethos of FORS (or more specifically Fleet Source) is to employ knowledgeable auditors who also posses good people and good customer service skills. In most cases that is the case. In fact, I have had the pleasure of meeting many FORS auditors whom are extremely talented transport consultants in their right and are really engaging people. However, if you have finished your audit exhausted with frustration, then how come a few have slipped through the net?

Finding the right people for the job

I can’t comment for Fleet Source or FORS but one can assume, as with all employers that finding the right people for the job can be difficult. I can speak from experience as I have made some not so great employment decisions. You meet the candidate, interview goes well, good CV etc. But after a few weeks it turns out they aren’t quite who they say they are, and that perhaps you may have misjudged your decision making process. Anyway, the point being it is understandable how some auditors may have the knowledge but lack certain other necessary skills required for the job.

Should I complain about my FORS audit experience?

Ok, so what happens if you encounter said auditor and haven’t had that great FORS audit experience? Well, you need to log a complaint. I know no one wants to sound like a whinge, but it’s vitally important you do log your concern. This way, something will be done about it and it will ultimately minimise the chances of someone else being subject to the same problem. However, you must ensure you do this the correct way. So here’s my list of Do’s and Don’ts after finding yourself in this unfortunate position.

  1. Do be polite at all times and stay on good terms. Even if this person is pushing your buttons!
  2. Don’t lose your temper, as the last thing you want is to have is a complaint logged against you and your company
  3. Do wait until your audit report comes back before you do any complaining. You need to have all the facts, remember knowledge is power!
  4. Do be meticulous. Go through each action point and work out what you disagree with and what you think the auditor has got wrong/missed etc
  5. Do think carefully about how you are going to approach the personality issues encountered. Be as positive as possible.
  6. Do be factual, concise and honest
  7. Don’t make any demands but you do need to think about what outcome you would like to achieve. If you have a genuine issue then I can say FORS will listen and deal with your complaint in a very professional manner
  8. Do refuse an auditor if they are known to be difficult. When allocated an auditor, you do have the right to refuse and request another one.

I’m not going to publish any names in this post about the FORS audit experience. However, if you are about to apply for your FORS Bronze audit, then feel free to get in touch and I will happily let know the names to watch out for!

*Please note this isn’t to say DVSA visits and DVSA officers provide a bad experience. All DVSA officers whom I have met are very professional and have been very good at making the operator feel at ease. It’s just a more pressured experience as the stakes are much higher!

Have you had any bad or indeed great FORS audit experiences? I’d love to hear about them! Let me know in the comments section.

Hoban Haulage Ltd pass their FORS Bronze standard audit

Congratulations! Hoban Haulage Ltd pass their FORS Bronze standard audit!
This was a new application which Hoban Haulage passed in a record two weeks and what a fantastic achievement and is testament to their commitment to compliance and helping to make London’s roads safer.

Hoban Haulage purchased our complete FORS Help package and we worked remotely. They followed the to do list and our advice ensuring a first time pass.

A few words from the MD…..
“Thanks Nick for your brilliant FORS Help package, I followed your advice and ensured all the templates fitted to my business. Your help was invaluable and I recommend anyone who wishes to pass their FORS Bronze without a hitch to go with TMconsultant! “

If you need any advice or FORS help, then just get in touch. TMconsultant, here to share the knowledge!

Drivers’ hours fines

New MOT reminder service launches in beta

New HGV roadworthiness legislation

New HGV roadworthiness legislation on its way

The government will be introducing new HGV roadworthiness legislation next year. The Department for Transport (DfT) has recently published the response to a consultation, setting out the HGV periodic testing and inspections exemptions which you can read here. It forms part of a wider package of legislation on roadworthiness-related changes, which will come into effect from 20 May 2018.

Who does this apply to?

The big question is, who (and what) does this new legislation apply to? Well, this is aimed at specialised heavy vehicles (which were previously exempt) who will now fall into the scope of annual testing. These vehicles will need to be plated before they are tested.

When will the new legislation take effect?

The DVSA will implement a phased approach for most vehicle types affected, which will extend the date for compliance, under certain circumstances, beyond 20 May 2018 and up to 20 May 2019 at the latest. It’s based on the Vehicle Excise Duty renewal date for the relevant vehicles. This will help to make sure the implementation is carried out in a way that gives industry more flexibility to balance out the testing of their fleet over a longer period.

Which vehicles will now be included?

In total, DVSA estimate there to be around 29,500 vehicles that will be brought into testing. The largest groups of vehicles affected are breakdown vehicles, road construction vehicles and engineering plant.
Top line categories of vehicles to be removed from exemption:
  • Mobile cranes; Break-down vehicles;
  • Engineering plant and plant, not being engineering plant, which is movable plant or equipment being a motor vehicle or trailer (not constructed primarily to carry a load) especially designed and constructed for the special purposes of engineering operations;
  • Trailers being drying or mixing plant designed for the production of asphalt or of bituminous or tarmacadam;
  • Tower wagons;
  • Road construction vehicles (but not road rollers and other specialised equipment not based on an HGV chassis);
  • Electrically propelled motor vehicles registered since 1 March 2015; Tractor units pulling exempt trailers; and
  • Motor tractors and heavy and light locomotives exempted under sections 185 and 186 (3) of the Road Traffic Act 1988, where these are based on a HGV chassis.

It’s worth noting that showman’s vehicles, many of which are currently exempt from testing as plant or motor tractors, will remain exempt from testing via a new specific exemption

Plating and testing

The focus of the consultation was on the requirement for annual roadworthiness testing. However, heavy vehicles within scope of annual roadworthiness testing are also by default within scope of vehicle plating. This involves DVSA issuing a plating certificate, in advance of a vehicle’s first test, to be attached to the vehicle that denotes the maximum vehicle weight and maximum train weight. This assists with vehicle testing and enforcement. There is no fee to vehicle operators for being plated, but this imposes an administrative cost to DVSA, funded by roadworthiness test fees.

Vehicles becoming subject to testing will join the existing goods vehicle testing regime where DVSA personnel test vehicles at Authorised Testing Facilities (ATFs). Where, due to the unusual design of a particular vehicle, this is not possible, the vehicle testers will satisfy themselves that safety and environmental standards will be maintained. The fees for these tests will be the same as applies to all currently tested HGVs

As with all consultations and new legislation changes they are detailed. So if you fall into any of the above categories it is recommended you read the full document which you can find here. Find out more about the phased approach.

If you need any assistance please don’t hesitate to get in touch, here to share the knowledge!

The RHA Webinar sales pitch

Last week I got involved with a Road Haulage Association (RHA) Webinar “Driver CPC is here to stay after Brexit”, which I thought was actually quite good for a number of reasons. It was entertaining, the hosts were friendly, well informed and engaging. I enjoyed the interactive aspects, where you can type your questions, which the hosts answer in real time. In fact, I do like the people at the RHA (generally) and these chaps exemplified this.

The subject matter was a great choice, as most operators and drivers alike are keen to know what’s going to happen to driver CPC after Brexit. I imagine most savvy people will have a basic understanding of what will happen to EU legislation after Brexit. It was however, reassuring to know my understanding was on track!

So why my title ‘The RHA Webinar sales pitch’? Well, I do also have some criticisms. After the session it would have been nice to receive an email containing a link to listen again, together with slide show etc. There was a mention of ‘after session access’ but no instructions were given as to how this works.

My main gripe, is not necessarily the sales pitch itself, but the subtext of the promotional message. Now, I’m all for using creative and innovative ways to promote a business, but I feel it shouldn’t be at the expense of the smaller players. I very much doubt the hosts meant anything other than good intent. But the way the RHA explain why you should spend your money with them for training, rather with a competitor, I think should be reviewed. So here’s what I mean, the hosts were selling their training products and justifying why they are more expensive than the competition. The message was because you get what you pay for. Now, to a RHA member listening, that would seem like a perfectly reasonable proposition. However, it also implies (by default) that the other training providers are not a worthwhile investment. It’s a blanket generalisation of the rest of the transport training industry. This is of course not case. For example, our very own consortium member JK Transport Training won the Talent in Logistics Driver CPC Training Provider of the Year Award 2017. And as far as I’m aware they were up against the big boys too! Anyway my point is this. Yes, there are some not so great training providers out there but you don’t have to pay through the nose to get a decent day’s instruction.

If you would like to get involved with future RHA sales pitches….sorry webinars, go here.

For advice about Driver CPC training or if you would like to join the TMconsultant consortium go here. Here to share the knowledge!



DVSA earned recognition

The DVSA have launched their pilot DVSA earned recognition scheme. This can only be a great opportunity for operators and help with road safety!

Forward post from DVSA

DVSA earned recognition: save time and money

We know roadside checks cost you time and money. That’s why we want to make sure we don’t target compliant operators unnecessarily.

DVSA earned recognition for vehicle operators is a new way to prove you meet driver and vehicle standards.

You regularly share performance information with DVSA. In return, your vehicles are less likely to be stopped for inspections.

It’s a voluntary scheme that’s designed to work for operators of all sizes.

Join the pilot

We’re looking for operators with a track record of compliance to join the pilot.

If you join now, we’ll give you more help to get through the process. This level of support won’t be available later, so take advantage of it now.

We’ve published a new guide about how to join the pilot of DVSA earned recognition for vehicle operators. It tells you everything you need to know to get started.

When you successfully complete the pilot

You’ll get automatic entry to the DVSA earned recognition scheme. This will give you the full benefits, such as being:

  • an exemplary operator, and being able to prove this when you bid for contracts
  • recognised as a DVSA-approved operator on a list on GOV.UK
  • less likely to have your vehicles stopped at the roadside for inspections, saving you time and money
  • less likely to have DVSA enforcement staff visit your premises
Drivers’ hours fines

Changes to fines for commercial drivers

Changes to fines for commercial drivers

(Forward post from DVSA)

Changes to fines for commercial drivers rules will affect lorry, bus and coach drivers who drive tired will be fined for every time they’ve done it in the last 28 days.


How to apply for an Operator Licence

How to apply for an Operator Licence

How to apply for a operator licence? I often get asked how do I apply for an operator licence and questions relating to the process. This is mainly because it can seem like a daunting prospect as there are many detailed aspects to the process which will need thoughtful consideration. There are also many pitfalls and if you don’t get it right, could only delay the granting of the licence or worse the application could be rejected. So here is my guide on how to apply for an operators licence the right way and to help speed up the process.

Step 1. Online or snail mail

Decide whether you are going to use the online application system or use the traditional downloadable paper version via the post. Either way you will need to complete the GV79 form. In the summer of 2016, the office of the Traffic Commissioner launched its online application service for applying for an operator licence, which I have to say is very good. You complete the GV79 form, pay the fees and you can even upload all the requisite documentation, all from the comfort of your computer. Which ever option you decide to use, be methodical!

Step 2. Get it together, be prepared

Ensure you have all the requisite information, documentation and forms you need before you start the application.

  • Download the correct forms – If you are going down the paper route, make sure you download the latest GV79 version from .gov website. You’ll also need the guidance notes and requisite annexes, A. Advertisement, B. Current financial levels, C. Scale of fees, D. Maintenance contract and in some cases E. supplementary environmental information. All can be found here.
  • Contact information – This the main person dealing with the application. They must available to be contacted during the weeks after the application has been submitted
  • Contact address – This is the address used for correspondence. It can not be a PO Box or third party address and must be an address in Great Britain
  • Establishment address – This is the address in which the business keeps its core business documents, specifically relating to the operator licence. This can be the same as the contact address
  • Company information – What is your trade and are you a Limited Company, Sole Trader, LLP, partnership, sole trader etc. You will need to provide company information as it appears on the Companies House website. You will also need to provide names and date of births of all Company Directors
  • Type of licence – Do you require a Standard, Standard International or a Restricted Licence. Click here for more information on types of licence
  • Transport Manager – If you are applying for a standard or standard international licence, you will need to employ the services of either a full time or external transport manager to demonstrate professional competence. You will need the TM1 form and guidance notes (included on the online version) and the original CPC certificate. Restricted licence holders do not need to employ the services of a transport manager. However, I can not stress the importance of ensuring you at least have access to professional advice and or consider employing the services of a professional consultant. As for as compliance is concerned, restricted licence holders are subject to exactly the same legislation as standard holders.
  • Vehicles – How many vehicles and trailer are you going to use? If you’re planning to expand the business in the not to distant future, it may be worth adding in a margin. You’ll also need the details of your vehicles if you know them. If you’re hiring for more than one month you will need to provide the vehicle(s) details
  • Safety inspections – You’ll need to state the maximum number of weeks between safety inspections, and details of who will be carrying out the inspections. There are a number of factors to consider here. What will the annual mileage be, what kind of work will the vehicles be subject to. If you’re unsure get advice. You’ll need to get a signed contract between you and your supplier if you are out sourcing. See annex D. Maintenance contract
  • Operating centre details – This is where your vehicles and trailers will normally be kept. You must ensure that you have enough off-street parking spaces at your operating centre(s) for all of your vehicles and trailers. You will need to state whether the premises is owned by you, leased or rented. If rented or leased you’ll need to get a letter of permission from the landlord
  • Advertisement – You will need to advertise your intentions via a local paper. Make sure you use the correct format and wording. See Annex A. This will be at your expense, usually around £300 to £450
  • Financial evidence – You need to show the traffic commissioner that you have sufficient financial resources to maintain your vehicles and run your business. Make sure you provide original evidence of financial documentation. Note the rates change every January! This is very detailed by nature, familiar yourself with annex B. and guidance note 13
  • Previous licences – Gather information relating to anyone named on the application (including partners, directors and transport managers) who:
    • Currently or have previously held a goods or public service vehicle operator’s licence in any traffic area.
    • Has had a licence refused, revoked, suspended or curtailed in the EU
    • Have attended a Public Inquiry before a traffic commissioner
    • Have been disqualified from holding or obtaining an operators licence by any traffic commissioner
    • Within the last twelve months, have you, your company or organisation or your partners or directors purchased the assets or shareholding of any company that, to your knowledge, currently holds or has previously held an operator’s licence in any traffic area
  • Convictions – Get information and background details on anyone named or has any connection with the application who has been convicted of any relevant offence. So that’s partners, directors, transport managers, any company named on the application, parent company if you are a limited company or any employees or agents
  • Payment information – You can pay by card online or by cheque/postal order and card via the paper version. You’ll need the signature of who the person paying. For current rates go here.

Step 3. Complete the application

For the online application you’ll need to register which is very quick and easy. You’ll also need to register with Verify which is a way to prove who you are online. You still have an option to print and sign. Make sure you have all the requisite documents. Check the check list below. There’s also a check list on the GV79 form and on the online version.

Check list

  • I have completed all applicable questions on this form
  • I have checked that the declaration is signed and dated by an authorised person
  • I have provided the whole page of the newspaper for each advertisement I have placed. The date and the full title of the newspaper are shown on the page holding my advertisement. (See guidance note 10 and Annex A)
  • I have provided original financial evidence in accordance with Section 13 and Guidance Note 13. I understand that photocopies are not acceptable
  • I have enclosed a cheque or provided payment details to cover the application fee and I understand that this fee will not be returned to me even if my application is withdrawn or refused.

All applicants for either a Standard National or International operator licence must supply the following information.

  • I have enclosed original Certificate(s) of Professional Competence in Road Haulage Operations or evidence of qualification(s) giving exemption, for all Transport Managers listed on my application
  • I have enclosed completed and signed TM1 forms for all Transport Managers listed on my application. You may need to supply the following information depending on your answers to questions 12b), 13b) and 15a)

Depending on your answers to these questions further information may be required for some applicants.

  • I answered Question 12b) by stating that an external contractor would carry out the safety inspections for this licence and I have enclosed a copy of the maintenance contract with that contractor. (See Annex D)
  • I answered ‘Yes’ to part of Question 13b) and I have enclosed the relevant documentary evidence of the relevant insolvency history
  • I answered ‘Yes’ to Question 15a) and I have enclosed full details of the background circumstances of all convictions declared.

Step 4. Undertakings and Declaration

You will need to read and digest the licence undertakings. Once understood you can sign the declaration. This must be either the owner, partner or director. As mentioned for the online system, you’ll need to prove who you are via the Verify service as well.

I have provided these below so you have a prior understanding of an operators’ responsibilities. Once you have

Operator Licence Undertakings

I understand that by signing the application I am accepting the undertakings below; that they will be recorded on the licence; that failure to comply with the conditions or undertakings recorded on the licence may result in the licence being revoked, suspended or curtailed; and that failure to comply with these conditions is also a criminal offence.

  • The laws relating to the driving and operation of vehicles used under this licence are observed
  • The rules on drivers’ hours and tachographs are observed, proper records are kept and that these are made available on request
  • Vehicles and trailers are not overloaded
  • Vehicles operate within speed limits
  • Vehicles and trailers, including hired vehicles and trailers, are kept in a fit and serviceable condition
  • Drivers report promptly any defects or symptoms of defects that could prevent the safe operation of vehicles and/or trailers, and that any defects are recorded in writing
  • Records are kept (for 15 months) of all driver reports which record defects, all safety inspections, routine maintenance and repairs to vehicles, and that these are made available on request
  • In respect of each operating centre specified, that the number of vehicles and the number of trailers kept there will not exceed the maximum numbers authorised at each operating centre (which will be noted on the licence)
  • An unauthorised operating centre is not used in any traffic area
    Furthermore, I will notify the traffic commissioner of any convictions against myself, or the company, business partner(s), the company directors, nominated transport manager(s) named in this application, or employees or agents of the applicant for this licence and, if the licence is issued, convictions against the licence holder or employees or agents of the licence holder
  • I will ensure that the traffic commissioner is notified within 28 days of any other changes, for example a change to the proposed maintenance arrangements; a change in the financial status of the licence holder (e.g. if placed in liquidation or receivership), or a change to Limited Company status or partnership, that might affect the licence, if issued.

Step 5. Get it checked

I can not stress the importance of getting a second set of eyes to check over your application for an operator licence. The devil is in the detail and you simply can’t afford to leave anything out. This could be a colleague who understands transport or if it’s just you, you could use the services of a professional consultant.

Step 6. Send

For the online system, once you have scanned all the requisite documents, just click to send. For the paper version, collate all your documents and importantly, make sure you send your operator licence application via ‘signed for’ post!

Remember, if you do not send all the information needed it will lead to a significant delay in the application, or the application could even be refused.

Top tips

  • Make sure financial evidence is in the name of the applicant or licence holder
  • Provide original documents with your application
  • If you’ve only just opened your account, get an opening statement from the bank showing the required level of money for your licence
  • Make sure you’ve got enough to support the number of vehicles you have applied for
Operating Centre and Maintenance
  • If you don’t own the site, get written permission from the person who does
  • Make sure your advert is published in a newspaper that can be bought in the area where your operating centre is located
  • Check the advert wording is correct before sending it off to the newspaper
  • Make sure your advert is placed in the newspaper within the required timescale
  • If maintenance isn’t in house then complete a formal contract signed by you and the contractor
Transport Manager (standard licences)
  • Make sure your transport manager’s original CPC is provided with your application
  • Complete the TM1 form with your transport manager
  • If your transport manager will be specified on more than one licence, set out how they will meet all their responsibilities in a separate letter
Previous history
  • Tell the Traffic Commissioner about any operator licences you’ve previously held or been involved in
  • Make sure you disclose any adverse financial history of other businesses you’ve owned (not just transport)
  • Tell the Traffic Commissioner about any convictions and penalties for you or the business

Main reasons for delays and rejections

  • Forms not being completed in full (including TM1 from for standard applications)
  • Incorrect information on forms
  • Incomplete documentation
  • Financial standing not being met
  • Maintenance contracts not being submitted

In conclusion

Make sure you have all the required information and you have the correct information ready for your application of your operating licence. Make sure you have the correct types of documentation, be methodical and get it checked!

For further reading and information, I have complied the definitive list of .gov and DVSA downloadable guides and forms.

If you require any advice or you would like help with your operator licence application, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Here to share the knowledge!