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“Change of Entity” Confusion Leads to Traffic Commissioner’s Public Inquiry

The Operator in this matter, represented at Public Inquiry by Harry Bowyer, decided to change his business from that of a sole trader to a Limited Company. He contacted the Office of the Traffic Commissioner to change the name of the business, failing to realise that the change in entity required an application for a new licence.

He had been operating unlawfully as a Limited Company for a year before the situation came to light. Matters proceeded to go down hill from this point as it soon became apparent that the Operator, who was operating a one vehicle business, was occupying each and every role in the business and in none of them did he shine. He was his own transport manager and hadn’t taken any form of refresher training since 1997. He was the only driver and whilst he was undertaking the daily defect inspections he was not recording them as, “it seemed stupid to report them to myself.” His Maintenance Provider was using PMI forms which dated back to 2012, a vintage year but not entirely current.  The Operator could boast a 100% initial MOT failure rate.

The Operator had not been downloading his vehicle unit and did not even have a company card.

A reputable Transport Consultant was instructed and set up proper systems and instructed the Operator in the correct use of his Drivers’ Hours systems.

The Maintenance was shifted to a Main dealership who could provide roller brake testing.

The Operator was booked on a two day FTA Transport Manager refresher course

It was quiet apparent that this was a case where compliance had taken a back seat to running the business rather than a deliberate attempt to obtain a financial advantage.

The sole trader licence was revoked and the Licence in the Limited Company’s name was granted.

Case Details

Case Name: “Change of Entity” Confusion Leads to Traffic Commissioner’s Public Inquiry
Case Date: October 2018
Case Type (info): Traffic Commissioner’s Public Inquiry

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