RHA Messenger 19 April

General Election Impact Prime minister Theresa May’s decision to call a snap election, and its acceptance by the opposition parties, means normal business at Westminster stalls until after the vote on June 8th. That means the RHA is unable to lobby MPs over the HMRC’s imposition of new red tape related to overnight allowances for

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60 second law update: drug-driving

In March 2015 the government introduced a law that made it an offence to drive with certain prescription and illegal drugs above specified blood levels in the body, whether their driving was impaired or not. The law, which covers England and Wales, was intended to bring drug-driving enforcement into line with that of drink-driving. The

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FTA says Driver CPC training must remain flexible

The Freight Transport Association is concerned that proposed revisions to the European Commission’s Driver CPC Directive (Certificate of Professional Competence) could limit operators’ ability to provide relevant training for their drivers. FTA says the planned changes (which prevent refresher courses on the same subject during the five-year period) could mean specialised training required in certain

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DVSA considers outsourcing part four of the Driver CPC test

The DVSA is to gauge how practical it would be for external assessors to carry out Driver CPC practical demonstrations. From early December to early January 2017 it will trial whether it would be possible to outsource part four of the Driver CPC assessment, which includes vehicle walk-around checks and safe loading, to a third

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No plans to scrap Driver CPC after Brexit

The government has said it has no plans to scrap the Driver CPC after Brexit. Responding to a question from CM about whether the Driver CPC would be kept, scrapped or amended, a spokesman for the DfT said : “Lorry drivers help keep Britain moving and play a vital role in boosting growth and prosperity

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DVSA collects £1.2m in HGV Road User Levy fines

The DVSA has collected more than £1.2m in roadside fines from foreign-registered operators for non-payment of the HGV Road User Levy. Some 4,058 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) were issued to HGVs that had not paid the road user charge, while fines taken at the roadside totalled £1.22m, the DVSA said in its annual report and

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EU low-emission strategy a step in the right direction – says FTA

Responding to the European Commission’s low-emission mobility strategy announced today – the Freight Transport Association (FTA) has said that the proposed measures are a step in the right direction to reducing freight carbon emissions. Elements of the Communication have been welcomed by the FTA which noted that the strategy does not focus on only one

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Sadiq Khan boosts pollution fund to tackle London toxic air hotspots

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is to help some of London’s most polluted boroughs implement new hard-hitting measures to tackle toxic air quality hot spots and filthy emission fumes with an £11m fund. Five ‘Low Emission Neighbourhoods’ will be set up across eight boroughs, with pollution-busting measures including strict new penalties for the most

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Driving test changes to ‘better reflect real-life driving’

Changes to the driving test will better reflect real-life driving, says the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). The proposals are to: Increase the ‘independent driving’ part of the test from 10 to 20 minutes Ask candidates to follow directions on a sat nav as an alternative to following road signs Replace current manoeuvres such

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Consultation on driverless vehicle regulations a positive step, says FTA

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) says this week’s announcement by the Department for Transport (DfT) of a consultation on driverless cars is a positive step. As well as setting out regulatory changes to better facilitate the use of driverless vehicles in the future, the document also restates the potential positives from HGV platooning. The document

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RHA calls for new penalty regime for Red X driving offences

The Road Haulage Association calls on the government to introduce a camera-based fixed penalty regime for those drivers who ignore Red X lane closures on motorways. Commenting, RHA director of policy Jack Semple said: “We do not make a habit of calling for new penalties for drivers but, in this case, the law has fallen

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Road Safety Laws: Are You Being Compliant?

Road safety laws are put in place to ensure that everyone is safe on the roads – that includes those driving for pleasure or work – whether that is a motorbike, car, van or truck. We know the general laws of the road such as ensuring your vehicle is regularly examined for road-worthiness and sticking

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Free guidance on safe trailer coupling and uncoupling published

The Freight Transport Association has been instrumental in the drafting of new guidance, published today, on the safe coupling, uncoupling and parking of commercial vehicles and trailers. The ‘Safe coupling and uncoupling guide’ is intended to assist employers, those who control sites where coupling and uncoupling is undertaken by users of large goods vehicles, managers,

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London Mayor sets out ‘Clean Air Action Plan’

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has set out his ‘Clean Air Action Plan’, in which the introduction of the Ultra Low Emission Zone is brought forward to 2019 from 2020. The key points in the plan include: Implementing a £10 Emissions Surcharge (dubbed the ‘T-charge’) on the most polluting vehicles entering central London from 2017. The

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EC considering more regulation for van operators

The European Commission (EC) intends to tighten the rules for van operators and bring them into line with the regulations that govern the HGV industry. The EC is seeking the industry’s thoughts on extending the requirements for financial standing, good repute, cabotage and professional competence to cover vehicles weighing less than 3.5 tonnes GVW, as

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60-second law update: health and safety

Operators have been warned about more significant fines being imposed on businesses in the case of a fatality or injury at work, as well as the importance of proper coupling and uncoupling procedures and likely changes to maximum pallet weights. Tougher fines Following the publication of new sentencing guidelines that came into force on 1

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FTA says enforcement not legislation is the answer

The Freight Transport Association says effective enforcement of vans must come before new laws following the announcement of three new European Commission consultations. The EC yesterday released the first of the three consultations about changes to operator licensing which poses a range of questions about the way two key pieces of transport legislation work and

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FTA calls for postponement of French minimum wage rule

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has called for urgent postponement of a new employment law in France which means all foreign road workers visiting the country have to carry documents to prove they earn the French minimum wage. From 1 July, foreign vehicles operating on French soil will have to implement new reporting requirements to

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FTA publishes updated guide to truck turning and manoeuvring

By popular demand, the Freight Transport Association has published a new, updated edition of Designing for Deliveries, the longstanding guide to truck turning and manoeuvring for architects, planners and engineers designing and evaluating service areas and access roads for commercial vehicles. The new 2016 edition updates the standards for the latest vehicle changes including the

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DVSA plans to commence earned recognition scheme in early 2017

The DVSA plans to launch its earned recognition scheme in early 2017. It will reward operators with fewer compliance checks in return for access to their compliance data, which will help the agency focus its resources on the seriously and serially non-compliant. Speaking at the Woodfines Road Transport Conference in Duxford, Cambridgeshire, the DVSA’s compliance

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Bridge heights wrong!

Bridge height signs may over-state the clearance available for trucks, leading to disastrous consequences. The RHA has learned that a study by Transport for London has shown that one in four low bridges have incorrect height markings. It is believed that errors are likely nationwide and highway authorities are to carry out urgent reviews. The

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Beverley Bell: driver responsible in an autonomous truck

A driver behind the wheel of an autonomous vehicle will not see their legal standing altered if they are in an accident, said senior traffic commissioner (TC) Beverley Bell. Speaking at the Multimodal show in Birmingham last week, the TC for the North West told delegates: “It’s quite clear. The driver is in control. The

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FTA warns motorists to be aware of dangers of prescription drugs

Drink driving limits are well known but many drivers may be unaware of changes to the law in England and Wales on medications including diazepam and temazepam. Limits were introduced for eight commonly-prescribed drugs and anyone whose driving is impaired through exceeding the limit can face prosecution. The penalty for drug driving is the same

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Transport firms in favour of National Living Wage

The Close Brothers business barometer today revealed that nearly three quarters (72%) of SMEs in the transport sector welcome the new UK National Living Wage which came into force on April 1, 2016. The new rate of £7.20 per hour for workers aged over 25 is a rise of 50p on the current national minimum

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Overtaking ban on M11 to be self-enforced

An HGV overtaking ban on the M11 will act as a reminder to drivers to be courteous towards other road users and will be largely self-enforced, according to Highways England. No start date for the restriction has been announced, but Highways England said it will be rolled out when funding and statutory issues are overcome.

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Review of truck drivers’ civil penalties welcomed by FTA

Plans to improve the civil penalties scheme for truck drivers that raised £6.6m in fines for carrying illegal immigrants last year have been welcomed by the Freight Transport Association. FTA is pleased to see the Government working with the freight industry in order to combat illegal immigration. The Association embraced the opportunity to contribute to

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Will Whitehorn FCILT to become next CILT UK President

Will Whitehorn FCILT FRAeS FMS, Director, Stagecoach Group Plc and Chairman, Transport Systems Catapult, is to become the next President of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) in the UK. He will take up the one-year presidency from Beverley Bell FCILT when she passes the honour at an inauguration lunch to be held

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