Coronavirus: PHE guidance on social distancing in the workplace
Public Health England (PHE) has published a list of tailored advice for different scenarios as an example of how social distancing and other measures might be implemented by employers in England to help protect their workforce and customers from coronavirus while still continuing to trade.
Advice for Transport businesses
Social distancing should be maintained where possible but we recognise that on many forms of transport, staff will not always be able to stay 2 metres away from each other or passengers. Some examples of the advice are below.
If workers have to share enclosed spaces such as the cabs of vehicles, they should keep the window open for ventilation and they should be careful to avoid touching their face at all times. On leaving the enclosed space, they should wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or more or use hand sanitiser when they cannot wash their hands.
For the use of private vehicles or when car pooling, if the journey is essential, such as travel to work, and there is no option but to share a car with people who are not part of the same household, journeys should be shared with the same individuals and with the minimum number of people at any one time.
Good ventilation (i.e. keeping the windows open) and facing away from each other may help to reduce the risk.
Private vehicles that are used by people from multiple households should be cleaned regularly using gloves and standard cleaning products with particular emphasis on handles and other areas where passengers may touch surfaces
More information on different scenarios and advice can be found here.
Keep up to date with all official government advice on Covid-19 at www.gov.uk/coronavirus
3rd April 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: changes to professional driver requirements
he Government has announced temporary changes to professional driver requirements as part of its response to the coronavirus outbreak.
Driver CPC periodic training
During the coronavirus outbreak, it may be difficult for drivers to complete their periodic training. The Department for Transport has therefore put in place temporary changes to professional driver qualification requirements.
Professional lorry and bus drivers whose Driver Qualification Card (DQC) expires in the period 1 March 2020 to 30 September 2020 can continue driving.
Drivers should continue to carry their expired DQC during this period.
Find out more about the updated guidance and keep up to date with all official government advice on coronavirus.
19 March 2020
With the COVID-19/Coronavirus situation continuing to evolve we would like to reassure you that business is continuing as normal here at DMP Training (UK) LTD and that we are closely monitoring all the advice from both the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the UK Government and evolving our procedures accordingly.
We are taking extra measures to protect our staff and customers in the following ways:
- A Coronavirus check sheet will be completed by every candidate to protect our staff and fellow candidates
- We are providing antibacterial cleaner in all our training vehicles, the steering wheel, gear stick, handbrake and door handles will be wiped down before each training session.
- Our training centre will be regularly cleaned and disinfected throughout the day especially in the key customer contact points with antibacterial cleaner.
- Our handwashing and drying facilities in our training centre will be maintained to ensure that they are constantly refilled and available.
- Guidance on proper handwashing techniques are now displayed.
- Please don’t be offended that we have stopped shaking hands with our customers.
The most important steps that you can personally take to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are:
- Wash your hands regularly
- Cough and sneeze into a tissue and dispose of it immediately
- Avoid touching your face
We will continue to monitor developments and advice very closely. Should you have any questions in the meantime please don't hesitate to contact us.
Top myths about DVSA roadside enforcement
Every job has them.
Those niggling misconceptions often fed by people’s prejudices or misunderstandings.
Our roadside enforcement work is no different.
I heard them all when I was a frontline enforcement officer. Now I’m in a management role, I often hear the same untruths at seminars and conferences.
Here are the top myths surrounding our enforcement work and the reality behind them…
1. Our roadside checks include cars
This is not the case. Our enforcement focus is on commercial vehicles as set out by law.
Why I hear you ask?
Commercial vehicles – whether they’re lorries, vans or large passenger vehicles – pose a higher risk to road users.
Often their sheer size means the impact of something going wrong is huge. It’s potentially even worse when you’re talking about a coach with 70 passengers on board.
Unlike your average car driver with a short daily commute, commercial drivers are on the road for long hours.
Our role is to make sure they’re taking breaks and not driving for too long to keep us all safe. We’ve dealt with over 15,000 serious drivers’ hours offences since last April.
Trailers and caravans
The Government also requires us to check other road users such as vehicles towing trailers and caravans as part of wider road safety initiatives.
The Police are responsible for roadside enforcement of cars. However, we work with the Police in joint enforcement operations targeting all vehicles.
We do cover cars with our statutory work on MOTs.
2. We pull over all lorries
Our enforcement is focused on the bad guys – the serially non-compliant operators – to improve safety and traffic flows.
We are very unlikely to stop vehicles run by the safest operators, such as those belonging to our earned recognition scheme, unless there is an obvious visual problem. This is an extra ‘carrot’ to encourage operators to keep their vehicles in good order and stick to the rules.
Our enforcement officers check how compliant an operator is at the touch of a button.
Operators’ compliance ratings are based on previous roadside checks along with other intelligence such annual test results of their vehicles.
3. We keep the money from our roadside fines
Quite the opposite.
All of the money from our fixed penalty fines goes to the Government to fund vital public services.
The only exception is the £80 fee we charge to free up an immobilised vehicle once a serious defect or offence has been resolved. This fee partially covers the cost of this action.
A large part of our enforcement funding comes from other DVSA income such as lorry and large passenger vehicle testing fees.
Above all, our fines aim to deter commercial drivers and operators from breaking the rules and not maintaining their vehicles.
Other deterrents include prosecutions and referring more serious offences to the Traffic Commissioner.
4. Human error causes most accidents, why bother with vehicle defects?
It’s true that defective vehicles account for around 2% of all road accidents.
However, this is a testament to our enforcement role along with car MOTs and annual tests for larger vehicles.
The UK has some of the safest roads in the world, which is partly due to our checks on commercial vehicles.
This myth also ignores our work on distractions such as mobile phone use and drivers’ hours which help to reduce accidents caused by human error.
5. We give out huge fines on any defect or offence
It’s all about the level of risk, so the fine or other punishment is in line with the severity of the defect or offence.
Just like a car MOT, we give out advisory notices on minor defects which need looking at but aren’t serious safety risks and these don’t involve a fine.
What about a faulty indicator bulb?
Whilst some drivers feel it’s not a major issue, we make sure the bulb is replaced before allowing the vehicle to move on to prevent an accident. We’ll only hand out a fine if the driver was aware of the defect and carried on with the journey.
It’s estimated 85% of defects can be spotted by the commercial driver during their required walkaround check before each journey.
6. We maintain Britain’s roads
In short, no.
The clue is in our title – our role covers drivers and vehicles, not the roads themselves.
Councils are responsible for maintaining local roads, whilst Highways England and Traffic Scotland cover the maintenance of motorways and major trunk roads in England and Scotland.*
However, we are part of the bigger road condition ‘picture’ as we’re tackling overloaded lorries and insecure loads, which can cause significant damage to the network.
Setting the record straight
I hope this blog post sets the record straight on these persistent myths surrounding our work.
For more information on becoming an earned recognition operator and how it works visit our earned recognition webpage.
*South Wales Trunk Road Agent and North & Mid Wales Trunk Road Agent cover the major roads in these areas, and all Northern Irish roads are maintained by Transport NI.
Do you know your Operator Licence Undertakings? We get asked this question more nowadays as this information isn’t that easy to find due to operator licence applications being all online. So for anyone looking here they are!
What are Operator Licence Undertakings?
They are set of undertakings which, when issued with your operator licence, you will sign and agree to abide by. Not doing so will probably result in you appearing in front of the traffic commissioner! Depending on your application there may some extra provisions added to the statuary operator licence undertakings.
Undertaking No 1.
The laws relating to the driving and operation of vehicles used under this licence are observed.
Undertaking No 2.
The rules on drivers hours and Tachographs are observed, and proper records are kept and that they are stored, also that records are readily available on request
Undertaking No 3.
To ensure vehicles and trailers are not overloaded
Undertaking No 4.
That all vehicles operator within speed limits
Undertaking No 5.
To ensure drivers promptly report any defects that could prevent the safe operation of the vehicle or trailer and that all defects are recorded in writing.
Undertaking No 6.
To ensure all vehicles and trailers, including hired vehicles and trailers, are kept in a fit and serviceable condition.
Undertaking No 7.
To ensure you are keeping full records for a 15 month period for all drivers reports of defects, safety inspections, routine maintenance and repairs to vehicles.
All these records need to be available on request.
Undertaking No 8.
In respect of each operating centre specified, that the number of vehicles and number trailers kept there will not exceed the maximum number authorised at each operating centre. (Which will be noted on the licence)
Undertaking No 9.
An unauthorised operating centre is not used in any traffic area.
Undertaking No 10.
You will inform the traffic commissioner of any convictions against yourself, company, business partners, company directors and nominated transport manager/s named on the application.
Undertaking No 11.
That you will ensure that you will notify the traffic commissioner of any changes within 28 days, EG: proposed changes to maintenance arrangements. A change in the financial status of the licence holder (Liquidation etc) or a change to the limited company status or partnership that may affect the licence.
Are you confident you are keeping your promise to the Traffic Commissioner?
Comment from FTA re approval of Cat C+E apprenticeship amendments
Wednesday 30 October 2019
Today’s (30 October 2019) announcement from the Institute of Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IFATE) of approval of the drivers’ C+E apprenticeship is recognition of much hard work by FTA, which speaks for the logistics industry, in partnership with the Apprenticeships Trailblazer Group. However, as Sally Gilson, Head of Skills Development at FTA, explains, there is still much more work that needs to be done to ensure the future workforce for such a vital industry:
“FTA has been collaborating with the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IFATE) for some time to find a route for both Cat C and Cat C+E licences, and today’s announcement is the culmination of more than two years’ complex and intensive negotiations. We are delighted that the IFATE has heard our call for a viable apprenticeship standard against which young people can train for a career in logistics, and will now continue work on developing an Urban Operative standard which will provide the two paths the logistics industry desperately needs.
“However, many logistics businesses will not ever be able to draw down all the funds they paid into the Apprenticeship Levy as apprenticeships do not meet all the needs of our sector. So, while today’s announcement is welcome news, government still needs to reform the Levy to enable it to pay for all forms of training."
Efficient logistics is vital to keep Britain trading, directly having an impact on more than seven million people employed in the making, selling and moving of goods. With Brexit, new technology and other disruptive forces driving change in the way goods move across borders and through the supply chain, logistics has never been more important to UK plc. A champion and challenger, FTA speaks to government with one voice on behalf of the whole sector, with members from the road, rail, sea and air industries, as well as the buyers of freight services such as retailers and manufacturers.
Driver CPC deadline reminder