Traffic Commissioner says The Perfect Group of Companies “deserved to go out of business”

Tachograph

A company that “simply ignored” the requirements to operate HGVs safely and lawfully has had its licence revoked and its director has been disqualified.

Traffic commissioner (TC) Nicholas Denton said The Perfect Group of Companies “deserved to go out of business” after he found the firm had operated trailers without having authorisation.

It had also used an unauthorised operating centre for several months; failed in its responsibilities towards drivers’ hours and tachograph laws; failed to have an audit of its business carried out despite repeated requests by the TC; did not keep vehicles fit and serviceable; and did not have sufficient funds to support its restricted licence.

Director Brad Smith previously held a licence under the name The Perfect Textile Store, but this was revoked in December 2014 when he failed to provide a compliance audit following drivers’ hours concerns.

In February 2016, The Perfect Group of Companies applied for a licence, but due to Smith’s history it was called to public inquiry (PI). A licence for three vehicles and no trailers was granted on the agreement that the company provide an independent audit of its operations.

This never took place, despite Smith responding to follow-up letters claiming that an audit had been arranged.

Eventually the operator was hauled before the TC, where Smith said the failure to have the audit carried out was “an oversight”.

However, he brought no evidence of financial standing, nor any documents or records demonstrating compliance.

Smith admitted he had not read the call-up letter in its entirety.

Summing up, TC Denton said the audit failure was “particularly reprehensible given that the reason for the revocation of the licence with which Mr Smith was previously associated, The Perfect Textile Store, was also because an audit undertaking was not fulfilled.”

He added: “Mr Smith needs time out of the industry to reflect on what went wrong and to undergo the necessary priority.

“He needs to be jolted out of his complacency and made to understand that operating HGVs is a serious business and that the rules and regulations which apply to it must be observed.”

The TC disqualified Smith for 12 months.

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