Revocation following plant hire firm’s ‘no-show’.

HSE

A Basildon operator who failed to demonstrate financial standing and then wasted tribunal time by not appearing at a public inquiry has had her licence revoked.

Julia Oliver, trading as Nancy Black Plant Hire, indicated that she would appear at the Cambridge PI after concerns were raised over bank statements she submitted to show she had the required level of finance for two HGVs and two trailers.

According to the traffic commissioner for the Eastern region, the statements showed that the three month average did not meet the required sum.

The closing balance did exceed the amount, but the TC noted that it was only as a result of a recent deposit.

Shortly before the PI, the operator emailed the TC’s office claiming she had surrendered the licence, although there was no evidence the required forms were completed or lodged.

Oliver then failed to attend the PI.

In a written decision, the TC said: “Last minute communications refer to a potential surrender.

“The operator failed to provide clarification or to return the relevant documentation so I have been unable to accept surrender.

“There has been a resultant waste of tribunal time.”

The TC added that undertakings were breached, but in the absence of enforcement or annual test history, he would not remove her fitness.

“Her conduct has tarnished that,” he added, revoking the licence.

Licence curtailed for communication failures

HMRC

A traffic commissioner said he had been misled after a Felixstowe haulier failed to notify him it had changed its operating centre and was using an unauthorised transport manager.

Eastern TC Richard Turfitt described the situation regarding Liam Molloy Transport as “a bad case” and said there was a need for deterrent action following an appearance at a Cambridge public inquiry.

As well as relying on an unauthorised operating centre at Felixstowe docks, the company had not told the TC that the listed transport manager Liam Molloy had retired due to ill health in 2019.

Instead, nominated CPC holder Ian Stuart had been acting to ensure compliance since that time.

A roadside stop of one of Liam Molloy Transport’s vehicles in December 2018 uncovered a host of issues, including that the vehicle was out of annual test, as well as four drivers’ hours offences.

The driver was also handed a fixed penalty notice for an insufficient daily rest offence.

A follow-up site visit revealed a “lamentable” test history, with an initial pass rate of 33.33% between 2015 and 2018 and a 0% pass rate from 27 July 2018.

Director Emma Stuart said she had bought the business from Molloy in October 2018 and the TC noted that there were now additional driver checks, weekly downloads and the use of RHA analysis software, but there were still too many driver detectable defects occurring without being reported.

He allowed Ian Stuart’s appointment, albeit with a warning and cut the licence by 50% from two vehicles and two trailers for one month.