Chatfields opens UK’s 500th ATF lane

Chatfields has opened the 500th Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) Authorised Testing Facility (ATF) lane in the UK.

The new lane has been installed at the company’s Birtley site in County Durham and joins the group’s three other facilities in Leeds, Sheffield and Stockton.

Chatfields has invested heavily in its new ATF lane which features the latest technology and allows it to MoT petrol tankers.

Wayne Edwards, national franchise director for Chatfields, said: “We are delighted to be opening this milestone ATF facility at our Birtley site.

“The new ATF lane will allow the Birtley site to offer a true ‘one-stop-shop’ solution to help customers maximise vehicle up-time and make service and maintenance a great deal more efficient.

“As a group we are committed to delivering the very best service we can for all of our customers and the introduction of this new facility is another example of how we continue to invest to achieve this goal.”

. L-R. Alastair Peoples, DVSA chief executive who officially opened the facility, with Wayne Edwards, national franchise director for Chatfields

Pall-Ex boss: road safety is everyone's responsibility

Road safety is not the sole responsibility of hauliers and cyclists must do more to help themselves, the boss of Pall-Ex has said.

Following the death of 26-year-old cyclist Ying Tao last week that reignited calls for a rush-hour HGV ban in London – her death is the seventh of eight on the capital’s roads involving HGVs this year – Kevin Buchanan described such proposals as nonsensical.

“Shops, hotels, hospitals, nursing homes, restaurants and many other businesses would struggle to stay open,” Buchanan said.
“It’s still important to recognise that the responsibility lies on both sides. We’ve all seen the odd cyclist who defies danger, weaving in and out of lanes, and not taking adequate care and attention in congested traffic.

“I should stress that of course they are the minority of a population of cyclists who share our roads, and this small proportion does not by any means reflect the whole,” he added.

However, the Pall-Ex MD pointed out that cyclists are unregulated. “Cycle laws need to be more robust – whether that’s an insistence on protective headgear or an outright ban on wearing music headphones,” he said.

“One group is not more entitled than another to use our networks, so the onus must be on both parties to be as safe and knowledgeable about the dangers of using roads, particularly in busy urban centres.

“There is not one simple solution to the problem, nor is it exclusively the duty of the logistics firms. It’s an educational challenge to improve the skills, technology and equipment of all road users – rather than wholly laying the blame at the door of the HGV driver on every occasion.”