An operator “without the slightest idea” of compliance and who applied for a licence to run lorries just a few days after its previous licence was revoked, has had it refused.
West Midlands traffic commissioner Nicholas Denton said it was “with some surprise” that Ellis Group applied for a restricted licence on 5 March 2019 when he had revoked the previous licence of J Ellis Industrial Services on 26 February 2019.
The TC said he had not disqualified director Joshua Ellis, but he had stressed that he must attend an operator licence management course first before any future application was made.
During the latest application process it was pointed out to Ellis that he had not yet attended a course, though this was eventually achieved in June last year.
However, Denton said that because of his previous licence history “and his failure to attend the course that I regarded as the bare minimum in view of his complete ignorance of how to operate compliantly”, he called the operator to a PI.
Ellis explained that he had reapplied quickly before attending the O-licence course because he was aware that the application process could take several months.
He then had difficulty in finding a course at short notice.
The TC examined the operator’s bank statements and noted that the balance was some way short of the £4,800 needed to support a restricted licence for two lorries.
He was also concerned about some failed payments owing to a lack of funds in the operator’s account.
Ellis said that a bounced cheque was only because he had failed to sign it, but the TC noted that there was no evidence that a subsequent payment was made, nor would there have been sufficient funds in the account to have honoured it.
TC Denton adjourned the hearing and in a written decision he said he was refusing the application:
“The company lacks sufficient funds to support its application.
“Its average balance over the last 28 days is considerably short of the required amount and is clearly insufficient to cover current outgoings even without the extra expenditure which the acquisition and running of a vehicle or vehicles will involve.”