Licence cut after maintenance concerns

Warrington-based JPA Transport Services has had its licence curtailed by two HGVs after a maintenance investigation by the DVSA uncovered concerns over its record keeping and brake tests.

At a public inquiry (PI) deputy traffic commissioner (TC) Simon Evans heard how although nine of the 12 assessment areas were either ‘satisfactory’ or ‘mostly satisfactory’, two were marked unsatisfactory and one required it to be reported to the Office of the TC.

There were concerns about the quality of record keeping, including how vehicles were declared to be fit for use on the road, stretching of maintenance frequencies and driver detectable defects found at PMI.

In addition, some of the brake tests were not laden or inadequately laden.

At the PI, the company presented previously missing inspection sheets, which appeared to reduce the extent of the stretching.

Company director John Ashurst acknowledged that his supervision and oversight of the previous transport manager Richard Brownhill had been inadequate, but he had been dismissed and a replacement found. There was a plan to add an additional transport manager to the licence as well.

The deputy TC said there were clear positives, but that a significant negative was that a previous PI in 2020 had not been enough to bring things back on track.

Cutting its licence by two vehicles for 10 weeks, Evans said he couldn’t justify the firm’s application to increase its licence by 10 HGVs after the curtailment period, but he would allow it to increase by five vehicles instead. Brownhill was disqualified indefinitely.