Driver reimbursed after fighting move by Eddie Stobart's recruitment arm to dock his pay due to PCN
A lorry driver has been reimbursed by Eddie Stobart Logistics after its recruitment arm, The Logistics People, paid a penalty charge notice (PCN) without informing him and then docked it from his wages.
Freelance driver Charles Peel said he wasn’t given an opportunity to challenge the apparent breach of the London Lorry Control Scheme (LLCS), before The Logistics People paid £275 for an operator’s PCN.
Peel said if he had known, he could have chosen to pay a driver’s PCN for a fraction of the cost, or else appealed the decision.
Instead, he claimed the company told him almost four weeks later that it was planning to deduct the amount from his wages.
He said: “I have been presented with a fait accompli. It paid it and knocked it off my money. It said my contract says any fines you get that are imposed on you can be recharged, which is entirely fair. But it wasn’t imposed on me, it was imposed on Stobart.”
Peel was considering taking legal action for breach of contract against Eddie Stobart Logistics, but after CM got involved and pursued his case the transport group agreed to pay him back in full.
A spokesman for Eddie Stobart Logistics said: “We can confirm that we have refunded Mr Peel in full and acknowledge that in this instance, our administrative procedures were not correctly followed.
“Mr Peel is happy with this resolution and we have apologised for the inconvenience caused.”
In emails seen by CM, London Councils, which administers the LLCS, took action against Eddie Stobart Logistics because the company did not provide any documentary evidence about its route into London upon request.
It also stated that it had not issued a driver’s PCN because “the driver is not liable for a Permission Condition 6 offence”.
In an email from The Logistics People’s general manager to Peel, dated 5 September, the company stated: “We believe that any PCN we receive should be passed onto the driver, as it is the driver who is responsible for incurring the particular fine. In most cases where possible, we will contest the particular PCN, in this case we have attempted to do so and have unfortunately been unsuccessful.
“Upon receiving this PCN we have made the relevant action to pay this, given that should we not [have] paid this fine within 14 days of notice, this would [have] increased to £550.”
Truck driver in fatal crash given two years in prison
A truck driver convicted of causing death by dangerous driving has been sent to prison for two years.
Carlisle Crown Court was told that at about 5.20am on 8 September 2016 Ashley Cole of Mellor Lea Farm, Ecclesfield, Sheffield, was driving an artic that was involved in a fatal collision with an Audi A4 driven by Jamie Armstrong, 30, of Haltwhistle, Northumberland. Cole, 56, had parked at Stainmore Cafe on the A66 at Brough to rest and was attempting to manoeuvre his vehicle onto the westbound carriageway to continue his journey when he saw two HGVs travelling on the westbound carriageway.
Cole then had to wait to join the carriageway and, in doing so, his vehicle was blocking the eastbound carriageway. Armstrong’s Audi, which was travelling eastbound, collided with the trailer and he suffered fatal injuries.
Although he was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash, an investigation found that even if he had been this would not have prevented his fatal injuries. Cole denied that his driving had been dangerous, causing the death of Armstrong, but he was found guilty. Sergeant Claire Sampson of Cumbria Police’s mobile support group said: “This case is tragic for everyone involved. Jamie Armstrong was given no opportunity to avoid this collision.
"Our thoughts remain with the family of Mr Armstrong. We would like to thank them for the dignity and patience they have shown throughout this investigation.”