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Traffic commissioners unenthusiastic about O-licence auditing call

A call for mandatory auditing of haulage firms before they are issued with an O-licence[1] has not been supported by the traffic commissioners (TCs). The RHA[2] said all HGV operators should be thoroughly audited to raise the bar for operators in the interests of road safety. But a spokesman for the Office of the Traffic Commissioner said the TCs did not agree with the proposal. “Traffic commissioners do not support the introduction of mandatory auditing for all licence applicants, as they cannot be assured as to the quality and integrity of some audit services,” he said.

The RHA suggested that any audit system could be overseen by the DVSA and would address the frustrations of TCs who have regularly complained about industry compliance in their annual reports. The FTA told Commercialmotor.com that mandatory audits needed to be considered in the context of the DVSA’s earned recognition scheme[3], due to be rolled out over the next few months. James Hookham, FTA deputy chief executive, said: “Making such an audit mandatory for new operators only would be difficult to sustain as it would quickly lead to calls for refresher audits at regular intervals and for these to be applied to existing operators as well.

That makes for a major new potential cost and burden on the industry that would need to be thought through before committing to.”

  • CM will be taking a close look at mandatory audits in a forthcoming issue.


  1. ^ mandatory auditing of haulage firms before they are issued with an O-licence (www.commercialmotor.com)
  2. ^ RHA (www.rha.uk.net)
  3. ^ DVSA’s earned recognition scheme (www.commercialmotor.com)

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