The UK Traffic Commissioners this week issued a statement reiterating the need to manage drivers effectively. This was enthusiastically welcomed by transport training experts Novadata. Says Managing Director Su Winch, “We couldn’t agree more that maintaining a healthy O Licence relies heavily on knowledgeable transport managers instilling best practice and compliance in their drivers. It is essential, therefore, that managers themselves keep up to date on industry best practice and legislation by refreshing their knowledge on a regular basis.”
One of the most effective ways of ensuring that your knowledge, processes and practices are up to date is by attending a Transport Manager CPC Refresher course, Novadata believes. The Traffic Commissioners have themselves, in the past, also recommended that transport managers should attend a Transport Manager CPC Refresher course every few years.
“If you gained your Transport Manager CPC qualification some years ago, you must bear in mind that the transport legislation framework does evolve quite rapidly, so there will inevitably be some significant changes since you passed your examination,” explains Su Winch. “It is essential that you stay up to date with those changes, that you communicate them to your drivers and that you comply with them. Your O Licence depends on it.”
Many Restricted O Licences are held by organisations who don’t have a dedicated transport manager, and it should not be forgotten that the owners or directors of these operations share all the same legal responsibilities as standard O Licence holders, says Novadata. “For holders of Restricted O Licences, it is just as important to stay current with legislation and best practice,” adds Su Winch. “That’s why we, and the Traffic Commissioners often urge Restricted O Licence holders to attend OLAT or Operator Licence Awareness Training courses. If you face the same penalties for getting it wrong, you need the same knowledge of getting it right,” she says. “Taking an OLAT course every few years is the best way to safeguard your licence and your business, and it’s better to do so on your own initiative, rather than wait for a Traffic Commissioner to order you to attend.”
The Traffic Commissioners further stressed the importance of checking a new driver’s entitlement to drive with a driving licence check, and outlined the responsibility of the O Licence holder to ensure that drivers keep up their required Driver CPC training. They also reiterated the importance of keeping a file for each individual driver, which should include proof of regular checks, either on paper or online, of driving licences, Driver CPC cards (DQC) and digicard. Also emphasised were records of periodic training; other qualifications such as ADR; working time directive and tachograph infringements; DBS checks where appropriate; driver assessments and records of any reprimands or disciplinary measures taken. Novadata’s unique range of specially tailored products and services have been designed to help transport professionals to ensure that their systems, checks and processes are robust and compliant, helping to protect the all-important O Licence.
Novadata is one of the UK’s leading transport training providers, offering a wide range of courses including Transport Manager CPC, Transport Manager CPC Refresher, Operator Licence Awareness training and a wide range of Driver CPC courses. Courses are tailored to the LGV or PCV sectors.