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Harsher penalties for HGV drivers who use mobile phones behind the wheel

HGV drivers caught using mobile phones whilst driving will face harsher penalties under government plans announced this week.Under the proposals all motorists who endanger lives by using hand-held mobile phones while driving will face an increase from the current three penalty points to four, with the fixed penalty notice rising from £100 to £150. 

Polish-registered trucks top DVSA prohibition list

Some 42.1% of non-UK registered trailers stopped by the DVSA in 2014 were defective.Mechanical prohibition figures obtained via a freedom of information request by showed that of the 29,567 foreign-registered trailers stopped by enforcement officers between 1 January and 31 December 2014, 12,473 were issued with a PG9.

Annual test first-time pass rate at highest-ever level

First-time pass rates for HGVs and trailers at annual test have continued to improve, reaching their highest-ever levels.According to the DVSA’s Vehicle Testing, Enforcement, Approval and Safety Defect Data report (formerly the Effectiveness Report) for the 12 months to 31 March 2015, 80.1% of trucks passed first time. This is up from 78.4% achieved the previous year, which was the seventh consecutive increase.

Lawyer warns of tax changes

A lawyer has warned that many subcontractors the haulage sector could lose out when the government makes changes to tax rules in April 2016.  

Majority of operators unclassified by OCRS data

Almost two-thirds of HGV operators are unclassified under the DVSA’s OCRS system in terms of traffic compliance, has learned. Figures supplied by the agency show that as of November 2015, 49,801 operators out of 79,842 (62.3%) fell into the grey band for traffic under OCRS (covering drivers’ hours and vehicle weights), with 14,306 (nearly 17.9%) in the grey band for roadworthiness (covering vehicle condition).

Operators sanctioned for lending O-licence discs

Nick Denton, traffic commissioner (TC) for London and the South East, has curtailed a London operator’s licence and disqualified a transport manager for three months after they were found to have aided an illegal vehicle operation.The TC has reduced Darrells Transport Services’ authorisation from two vehicles to one for three months after its director, Noel Darrell, specified an additional fuel tanker on the company’s O-licence without the knowledge of its transport manager.

Senior TC sets out what is expected of a transport manager

Senior traffic commissioner (TC) Beverley Bell has for the first time outlined the responsibilities the TCs expect transport managers to have and the number of hours they should work every week.In the revised Senior Traffic Commissioner’s Statutory Guidance, which was published today (14 December) and will take effect on 1 January 2016, the TC highlighted the activities a transport manager may be expected to carry out.

Charges brought in fatal bath tipper crash case

Avon and Somerset police have charged two men in connection with the fatal Bath tipper crash earlier this year. A statement today (10 December) said:  “We’ve charged two men in connection with the road traffic collision Bath in which four people died.