DRIVING licence and verification supplier, AdvancedCheck is lobbying the Government to change to law so that businesses have the responsibility to check the licences of their vocational drivers against DVLA records in a bid to stop fraudulent dangerous drivers taking advantage of a loophole.
Businesses that need employees to drive as part of their work must monitor their entitlement to drive and verify driving licences, under the Corporate Manslaughter Act 2007. If they don’t, they can be fined upwards of £500,000.
According to the DVLA, 22 per cent of drivers currently have out-of-date licences and a whopping million UK drivers are only three points away from losing their licence.
Ken Naismith, general manager of AdvancedCheck, which verifies driving licences on behalf of businesses, says it’s no longer enough for companies to rely on a visual inspection:
“Keeping organisations compliant means verifying that all permitted drivers are legal to drive, highlighting oversights and errors that can be put right before there’s a problem. We check for more serious issues too like employees holding more than one licence – a clean one to give to their employer while withholding the real one which is up-to-date with their convictions.
“When they know they are about to reach 12 points on their licence and facing a ban, unscrupulous drivers call the DVLA saying that they’ve lost their licence. When the DVLA issues a duplicate, fraudsters keep the old one for their employer while only the new counterpart is updated with endorsements.”
AdvancedCheck is one of a small number of companies who work with the DVLA to provide an Electronic Driver Entitlement Checking Service (EDECS) to businesses, giving them confidence that their employees, who are required to drive, are correctly licensed, entitled and insured at all times.
With such concerns on the rise, AdvancedCheck is now calling for the Government to change the law so that businesses have a responsibility to check the licences of their vocational drivers against DVLA records on an ongoing basis to ensure that fraudulent drivers don’t slip through the net.
Alan Pert, head of Security at First Bus Glasgow supports the call for the Government to change the law. He said:
“It’s important that DVLA-verified checks become a legal requirement for businesses. As a retired police officer, I have come across too many instances of people driving through a ban, including those who have sent for a duplicate licence to keep the true picture from their employer.”
Tim Culpin, head of Transport & Regulatory Law at Aaron and Partners LLP, commented:
“The growing number of people getting points on their licence has resulted in the temptation for people to hide their poor driving record from their employer. It’s not enough for businesses to carry out a manual inspection of a driving licence. An online checking facility is the only way that businesses can effectively check that all of their vocational drivers are keeping within the law.”