'Blatant disregard' over records leads to disqualification

An operator given “numerous chances to demonstrate that he can be compliant” has been disqualified after failing to provide the DVSA with maintenance and drivers’ hours records.

Vincent Larkin was disqualified for two years and his licence in the trading name of Olympic Scaffolding was revoked following an Eastbourne public inquiry (PI) before deputy TC John Baker.

In 2018, the DVSA requested records from Larkin so it could carry out an assessment of compliance. Some documents were sent but a large number were not and, along with a new application for a company called On Point Construction that was using the same address, the operator was called to the PI.

On Point Construction director Sohayla Imanpour told the PI that her business had been running smaller vehicles but she was now applying for an operator’s licence with Larkin as joint director in order to share the workload.

However, DTC Baker ruled action needed to be taken in light of the “very poor previous history and the blatant disregard of the valid request made by the DVSA officers.”

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Six year ban for waste boss

A waste boss has been banned for six years after he breached environmental legislation at a site in Swindon. Averies Recycling was found to have held excess amounts of waste at the Marshgate site, which suffered a fire in 2014.

Director Lee Averies also did not dispute that his misconduct caused another company Swindon Skips, which he was also a director of, to also breach environmental legislation.

The Environment Agency found that Swindon Skips, which also had a fire on its Brindley Close site in 2013, had inadequate security; stored waste where it was not permitted; and failed to implement adequate fire breaks.

This misconduct resulted in the Environment Agency suspending Swindon Skips’ environmental permit and then, following the company’s subsequent liquidation, Swindon Borough Council became liable for cleaning the site.

Last month, Swindon Crown Court ordered Averies to pay £200,000 from money he benefitted from the crime.

The judge awarded costs to the Environment Agency of £15,000 against Averies, who is already serving a five-year ban from the waste industry.

Chief investigator for the Insolvency Service David Brooks said: “Managing waste sites is a significant undertaking considering the amount of regulations you need to uphold to mitigate the impact on both the environment and local residents too.

“Six years is a substantial ban recognising that Lee Averies not only caused significant disruption to the surrounding area during the 57-day fire on the Marshgate site but his actions also caused the local authority and Environment Agency to incur hundreds and thousands pounds worth of costs, which are ultimately picked up by local residents and tax payers.”

Environment Agency environment manager Colin Chiverton said: “The Environment Agency provided evidence to support Averies’ ban from holding a senior position within companies, which sits alongside Averies’ current five-year ban from the waste industry.”

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