Time runs out for haulage boss

An Oxfordshire operator that ran eight trucks has had its O-licence revoked after the TC said the business was “built on sand”, without the finances to satisfy even one vehicle. EME Trading, which traded as Oxford Pallets, appeared before TC Kevin Rooney at a Bristol public inquiry (PI), during which evidence emerged of a history of failed payments. Rooney said there were no signs of the situation improving and it would be grossly unfair on law-abiding operators to grant the company a period of grace. Oxford Pallets director Neil Lyon was sole director of another business called
Fifth Zone, which was also called to a PI following adverse reports from the DVSA.
In his written submissions, Lyon admitted fabricating a warning letter to a driver after a maintenance investigation in order to give the impression that the warning had been the subject of a formal written disciplinary process, when it had not. However, Rooney said that of even greater concern was Lyon providing him with a draft statement of affairs for Fifth Zone after it had entered liquidation, which showed an improved situation with regards to creditors than later versions. The TC found the director had done this deliberately to conceal the scale of the losses. As a result, Fifth Zone’s licence was also revoked and Lyon disqualified for three years.