Fleet News

Fleet News debate: Should employees self-certify driving licences?

How can fleet managers ensure driver licence checking is performed legally and accurately? Should fleets adopt a policy of allowing drivers to self-certify their driving licences?

Do you think that fleets should get drivers to self-certify their driving licences?

Leigh Stiff, fleet manager, Hannaford It’s a bad idea from a worst case scenario standpoint. Say an employee self-certified, failed to notify you of a ban (through fear of losing their job), and seriously injured another road user. Insurance may be invalidated but, aside from the financial implications, we need to adhere to duty of care and corporate social responsibilities.

In a perfect world this would work, but human nature flaws the overall effectiveness.

David Wallington, group safety adviser, BT To some extent I can understand the desire to move to self-certification of licences, but there are some very significant risks if this is all the governance that is used.

It is worth considering where there are small teams and where the employer is very confident in the character and capability of the individuals concerned. If the individual has a crash, reliance on a self-declaration is unlikely to be a defence for the employer.

Debbie Floyde, group fleet/risk manager, Bauer I would very much like to see drivers self-certifying their licences as I feel it would be an immediate solution rather than having to complete mandates and wait for checks to be done. Also, there is the reduction in cost if you are already paying to check licences.

Graham Short, fleet and property operations manager, Evander Glazing and Locks No, fleets need robust measures to be in place, managed by an adequately-trained person. I don’t think this is a good idea as it leaves room for discrepancy and error.

What could be done to reduce the cost of driver licence checking?

Leigh Stiff From my experience of licence checking, you’re better off not thinking about the cost. We have had cases where individuals have intentionally hidden bans. Licence checking brings this to the surface along with the reason for a ban.

The cost is certainly a concern, but I would rather have checks done and not need them, as opposed to needing them and not having them in place.

David Wallington The move to online mandates is the most cost-effective solution to reducing the costs at the present time. I’m not sure how else it could be made cheaper unless DVLA were to waive its fees.

Debbie Floyde In an ideal world we would self-certify. Perhaps a more automated system directly linked with the DVLA would alleviate the need for a third party but without the additional cost.

Graham Short In-house licence checking can reduce costs depending upon fleet size and staffing levels.

What is the minimum a fleet manager should be required to do with regards to checking licences?

Leigh Stiff Even from a relatively small fleet perspective I feel that the minimum should be licence checks carried out by a third party, DVLA or licence bureau.

Merely taking a copy of an employee’s licence is accomplishing very little, especially as I researched obtaining a fake driving licence from a website and was taken through to the payment stage in less than 10 minutes.


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