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82% unaware of corporate manslaughter legislation

Van fleet operators need to be made more aware of corporate manslaughter legislation and how it could apply if the working condition of their vehicles were suspect or their drivers’ did not hold a valid driving licence.

In a that poll that VansA2Z.com undertook at the Commercial Vehicle Show this year, 82% of those questioned were unaware of corporate manslaughter legislation.

The law asserts that if a staff member driving a company van is involved in a collision resulting in death or serious injury to themselves or a third party, the operator could be found liable, especially if the vehicle is defective or the driver does not hold a valid licence.

A walk-around vehicle check is common sense but how many drivers take the time to do it when they are under pressure to complete jobs? This is especially true for older vans that may suffer from structural corrosion, defective lighting, brakes or steering components.

Around 1 million drivers in the UK are just 3 points away from a disqualification, and how would you know if your driver got banned? With the removal of the paper driving licence counterpart in June 2015 operators can check licence details online with DVLA, who offer a “Check My Licence” service for operators with just a few drivers. For operators with more drivers a licence management and verification service such as SmartLicence makes good sense. Once it is set up everything happens in the background and the frequency of cheques is aligned to the risk profile of the driver. Operators are alerted to issues that need their attention so that they can manage the exceptions rather than all the data and process.

The implications for an operator of falling foul of corporate manslaughter legislation are very serious and  operators should take  positive steps to protect themselves.

Click here to find out more about SmartLicence.

Source – Transport News Brief

Posted on: 26.06.2015

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