Loyalty to son costs operator his O-licence

Erith-based operator Joseph Jebb’s standard international O-licence for six vehicles will be revoked on 1 March after police officers caught his son driving one of his trucks without a licence. 

In a written decision following a public inquiry (PI) in Croydon last month, South East traffic commissioner (TC) Nick Denton (pictured) disqualified Jebb from holding an O-licence for five years from 1 March and disqualified him indefinitely as a transport manager.

Provisional licence

On 19 June 2018 in Erith, south-east London, police officers stopped one of Jebb’s vehicles, a 32-tonne tipper, that was carrying a load of hardcore. The driver fled the scene but was detained after a chase. He initially gave a false name, however officers eventually established his identity as Jebb’s son Nicholas, who was wanted on recall to prison.

Nicholas only had a provisional category B driving licence and was driving without insurance and a tachograph card. He was later sentenced to six months’ imprisonment for the offences.

Lack of tachograph

A police investigation showed that the vehicle stopped had been driven without a tachograph card on four other occasions in the 28 days before 19 June for periods ranging from 40 minutes to 1 hour 22 minutes.

Jebb told the TC that on 19 June his son had taken the vehicle, without his knowledge, to tip the hardcore, before it was inspected by a prospective purchaser as it was up for sale. He said he was unable to identify who had driven without a card on the four occasions in May and June, but that it was not his son.

In November 2013, Nicholas, who at the time was wanted for recall to prison after being found driving while disqualified two months earlier, had been a passenger in a vehicle driven by his father, which was stopped by police. However, Nicholas ran off before being detained by a pursuing officer.

Joseph later claimed to police that he did not know the identity of his passenger, saying he had picked him up from a travellers’ site. Also, Joseph had not fulfilled an undertaking, given at a PI in December 2014, that vehicles be given four roller-brake tests a year, in addition to the one at MoT.

Instead, vehicles had been given two such brake tests and there were no systems in place to prevent unauthorised drivers from driving his vehicles.

In addition, Joseph had not downloaded the tachograph unit of the stopped vehicle before its sale in early July 2018, which meant data on any driving without a card before May 2018 was unavailable to police or the inquiry.

Denton concluded that Nicholas had driven the vehicle stopped on 19 June without a tachograph card as well as on the four occasions in May and June, and that his father knew about it.

Correct entitlement

He said: “Although I have some sympathy with his loyalty to his son, the fact is that such loyalty should never override Mr Jebb’s responsibility to the wider public – to ensure that his vehicles are driven only by drivers holding the correct entitlement.

“I allowed Mr Jebb to retain his repute as a transport manager in 2014 after significant maintenance failings had been revealed, but this was in the expectation that he would fulfil his undertaking for vehicles to be roller-brake tested four times a year. In the event he did not.”

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PACCAR and Toyota join forces to build a hydrogen truck

Kenworth

 

Paccar showed an innovative hydrogen truck at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this month, the result of a collaboration
with Toyota.

A total of 10 Kenworth T680 trucks (pictured) are being built, all powered by Toyota hydrogen fuel cell electric powertrains. They combine hydrogen gas and air to produce electricity that charges the lithium-ion batteries, which powers electric motors to move the trucks.

Power management systems apportion the electrical power from the fuel cells to the motors, batteries, and other components. The trucks, which are the product of a $41m (£32m) grant from the California Air Resources Board, have a range of more than 300 miles under normal operating conditions. They will operate in the Los Angeles area.

Kenworth director of project planning Stephen Olsen said: “It’s great to be working with Toyota. It is a reputable company with plenty of experience in the zero-emission landscape.”

Also taking pride of place on its stand was a zero-emission Peterbilt 220EV. The medium-duty truck, which uses the same Renault-built cab as the DAF LF, is powered by a pair of TransPower battery packs, totalling 148kWh.

It has a 100-mile range and a recharge time of 60 minutes when using a DC fast-charging system. The 220EV uses a Meritor Blue Horizon 2-speed drive eAxle. Six will go into service with an unnamed customer later this year.

The truck is assembled by Paccar in Sainte-Therese, Quebec, Canada.