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Unlicensed drivers a menace to road users

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Research undertaken by the Department of Transport into unlicensed driving has found that the time spent by unlicensed drivers on the road is a significant menace to road users. Thus it is essential for any company that expects its employees to drive company, or their own vehicles, on company business, to ensure that employee driving licence checks are up to date. This is particularly relevant as in the event of an accident, or fatality, involving an unlicensed driver, the company itself faces the risk of Corporate Manslaughter charges if it is shown that they have not checked the employee licence fully.

A major problem arises as many companies fall into the trap that they believe they have satisfied their legal requirements by visually inspecting their employees driving licenses; hence it is essential that the employer ascertains whether this a true licence check, or are they simply inspecting a document provided by their staff. The fact of the matter is virtually no UK company has in its possession, or access to, the latest driver record held by a licence authority such as the DVLA. Thus they are not aware, although it is their legal responsibility, of the member of staffs licence details, endorsements, penalty points, convictions, category entitlements or medical requirements.

The good news is that there is now a solution at hand to this tricky problem, as there have been significant developments by companies such as Licencecheck, since 2003 enabling companies to be sure that their drivers licence information is correct, and is as up to date as possible. As companies now have to be aware of their responsibilities whenever they employ people who have to drive as part of their work, it is key that they are not only aware of their obligations, but also complied with. These are easily fulfilled through the use of an electronic system that enables companies to be fully compliant with the legislation cost effectively, conveniently and efficiently, thus making huge savings on administration and vitally providing effective monitoring.

Author: Richard Brown - Director, Licencecheck

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