A Public Inquiry takes place in front of the Transport Industry Regulator (a Traffic Commissioner) and there are 8 traffic areas in the UK.
Traffic Commissioners have the power to refuse or revoke your operating licence and even to disqualify you from holding one in the future. For this reason Public Inquiries should be taken very seriously and handled professionally by experts who fully understand the process and have experience of achieving successful outcomes.
A Traffic Commissioner can take the following action:
- Licence revocation
- Licence suspension
- Issue a formal warning
- Curtailment or conditions imposed
- Disqualification of licence holder
- Disqualification of transport manager
Prior to your appearance before the Traffic Commissioner you will receive call up papers followed by a paginated bundle giving the reasons why you or your company has been called to a Public Inquiry. These will contain the allegations against you and the evidence to support them. You will have 28 days to respond.
At the hearing you will be expected to respond to these allegations. The Traffic Commissioner can question you directly about the allegations. You will be expected to present any evidence you have to support your case.
You will need to prepare for the forthcoming Public Inquiry by putting into place all compliance systems relating to your O licence undertakings which may have been identified as short comings by the DVSA.
Invergold Associates can assist you in achieving the level of compliance that would demonstrate to the Traffic Commissioner you have an effective control of your operator’s licence.
- Ensure & oversee that an effective vehicle defect reporting system is in place
- Vehicle maintenance planning
- Ensure all vehicles are operated in a roadworthy condition
- Ensure & oversee that correct vehicle maintenance procedures (PMI’s and repairs) are in place
- Monitor External Maintenance Contractors & visit workshops regularly
- Ensure vehicles are presented for PMI’s on the correct dates
- Ensure vehicles are booked in & presented for MOT’s on the correct dates
- Check your OCRS scores & MOT Pass and failure rates -DVSA encounter reports
- Audit maintenance records
- Check drivers conduct daily walk round checks efficiently
- Check vehicle scheduling
- Effectively managing drivers
- Ensure drivers schedule is compliant with EEC & Domestic driving rules
- Ensure driver’s cards & VU’s are downloaded at the required intervals
- Maintain and keep driving records for a period of 12 months
- Regularly check driver’s digital & analogue tachographs charts/printouts
- Provide warnings of any driving Infringements to drivers
- Check driver’s vocational driving licences every 6 months
- Ensure, arrange & oversee “Driver CPC Training” program
- Be approachable & available for drivers
- Provide training to drivers
- Driver checks
- Operator Licence variation applications
Invergold is an approved DVSA auditor and we have established strong credibility with Traffic Commissioners. We can represent you at the Public Inquiry with leading legal experts who specialise in transport law. Our professional support helps you, the operator, earn the trust of the Traffic Commissioner which increases the chance of a successful outcome.
As transport consultants, we work in partnership with operators before, during and after a Public Inquiry. By investing in our support you are demonstrating to the Traffic Commissioner that you are committed to ensuring compliance in all areas.
Before any Public Inquiry the operator must submit 3 months of original bank statements which must show that the operator has the required funds in relation to his O licence. This could be as an average amount:
- Standard National 1st vehicle £7950
- 2nd vehicle £4450
- Restricted licence 1st vehicle £3100
- 2nd vehicle £1700
Eg: A standard licence operator with 4 vehicles must show average of £21,300.
A restricted licence operator with 4 vehicles must show average of £8200.
“Traffic Commissioners must revoke a standard licence if it appears that the licence holder no longer satisfies the requirement to be of appropriate financial standing.”
If you are having trouble demonstrating financial standing, you still have options. The statutory guidance on the subject is detailed and complicated.