Lay-offs and short-time working — contractual terms

20 March 2020

I am experiencing financial difficulties within my company. The time has come, I have now decided to cut costs, introduce short-time working to reduce the wage bill and get the business back on its feet again. All the staff have a clause in their contract of employment entitling me to lay them off work or to introduce short-time working. Is there any more that I should know?

Swapping driving duties and recording travelling time

17 March 2020

As a business, we operate a number of vehicles and regularly have drivers swapping over driving duties, midway through journeys. We are now being told by VOSA that the drivers have to record their travelling time to or from the vehicle, when the changeover takes place, as part of their duty. Is this correct?

Transporting hand sanitisers — are these dangerous goods?

17 March 2020

As a result of the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak there is an increase in the use of alcohol-based hand sanitiser. Does the hand gel count as dangerous goods? If so, do my drivers need to be trained? And how should it be packaged?

Maintenance records

17 March 2020

When I applied for my operator’s licence, I said that vehicle inspections would be carried out every six weeks. I have always thought that if they are done in the sixth week that is okay, but I have just had a visit from DVSA who say that I am exceeding this when vehicles are inspected after six weeks and a few days. Who is right?

Vehicle repair mechanics — exemptions from drivers’ hours and CPC?

17 March 2020

Mechanics employed in my vehicle repair business pick up vehicles for repair. Sometimes they use vehicles with trailers to collect the broken-down vehicles. They are also involved in the movement of new-build vehicles. Do we need to organise Driver CPC training for them and should they be working within tachograph rules?

Has Northern Ireland retained the paper counterpart?

17 March 2020

We know that there is no longer a paper counterpart to the driving licence in GB but we have a driver with a licence issued in Northern Ireland who says that the paper counterpart to his licence is still required and that his driver details cannot be accessed on the DVSA website.

Paperless VED discs and detection systems

17 March 2020

Now that paper Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) discs have been abolished how are road tax and insurance requirements enforced? Surely, relying solely on number plate recognition cameras in police patrol cars to enforce VED will allow more people to avoid paying road tax and also lead to more uninsured vehicles on the road at the same time.

Driver licensing and van drivers

17 March 2020

Our LGV drivers all have photocard licences issued in the last five years and since the abolition of the paper counterpart we have had to use the DVSA enquiry system to check their entitlement and penalty points. However, we also have one or two older van drivers still with the old-style paper licences that have space for endorsements and penalty points to be recorded on them. So, when it comes to licence checks, therefore, we don’t need to bother with the DVSA online facility for them — or do we?