Disqualification and loss of repute for IPL Haulage's Ian Percival; Sheppard Commercial Services loses O-licence

George Barrow
June 7, 2018


The director and transport manager of IPL Haulage, Ian Percival, has lost his repute and been disqualified as a transport manager for two years from 30 June 2018 after a public inquiry (PI) in Bristol.

The hearing, held on the 17 April with a decision made last month, heard evidence from Percival. It also examined Sheppard Commercial Services (SCS), which Percival is listed as a director of along with owner Graeme Roberts.

Roberts also attended the PI.

The PI heard that on 3 November, a vehicle belonging to IPL was given an S-marked prohibition after an emissions cheat device was found. 

The vehicle was an older Euro-4 model and the device had been fitted to mask an AdBlue system defect to get the truck back on the road to fulfil a contract.

At an unannounced follow-up visit to IPL in January, DVSA examiner Tony Collins found there was no regular brake testing indicated on PMI records; PMI records indicated items that should have been identified in walk-around checks; driver defect recording showed defects were not being rectified; and there had been five roadside prohibitions (13 prohibitions in total) in the past 12 months.

Kevin Rooney, traffic commissioner for the West of England, said Percival had been frank with the examiner from the outset and remedial action taken. However Rooney said that as a transport manager, Percival had been slow “to identify the root cause of the prohibitions”.

He added: “Percival accepts that, as an operator, he is lacking the challenge of a transport manager whose focus is compliance. As such, he has allowed commercial considerations to overwhelm his decision-making. That is apparent not just with the AdBlue device, but also his approach to trailer maintenance [to which many of the faults related].”

Faced with an appearance at a PI, Roberts asked Percival to transfer funds to SCS so that it could demonstrate financial standing. Rooney said that this amounted to a fraudulent act (as did the emulator in regards IPL), and Roberts had shown no remorse.

This raised questions regarding trust and compliance in the future and consequently Rooney revoked both IPL and SCS’s O-licences from 30 June 2018.

About the Author


George Barrow

George has been writing about nearly anything with wheels for the past 15 years and is the UK jury member of the International Van of the Year and International Pick-Up Award.

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