Anna Chestnutt successfully represents an Operator before the Traffic Commissioner.

Ms Chestnutt, instructed on a Public Access basis by Lisa Fleming of Logico, a transport consultancy firm, ensured that an Operator was successful in retaining both of their licences.

The Operator was based across two sites Nationally and, therefore, required two licences. The DVSA had conducted a series of desk-based assessments which revealed serious failings in respect of each licence, such that a referral for a Public Inquiry was made.

Crucially, the Operator had been proactive in resolving the issues in readiness for the Inquiry. The Operator held restricted licences but nonetheless recruited a transport manager to ensure full regulatory compliance.

Additionally, the Operator changed their systems to ensure their records, including driver defect reports, were all maintained online. This streamlined approach will assist in maintaining a full record of all matters pertaining to each licence.

Ms Chestnutt prepared full written submissions in advance of the hearing to persuade the Traffic Commissioner that a revocation, suspension and curtailment were all disproportionate sanctions in this case. Any of these sanctions would have had a catastrophic impact upon the Operator’s business.

Ms Chestnutt then addressed the Traffic Commissioner in oral submissions to emphasise the clear steps the Operator had taken to ensure full compliance in the future.

The Traffic Commissioner took an exceptional course in this case, issuing a formal warning. The Operator must also complete an audit within the next 12 months.

The Traffic Commissioner in this case remarked that the licences would have been revoked, had the Operator not taken the steps that they did.

This case demonstrates that going above and beyond the formal requirements of a licence, in this instance engaging the services of a transport Manager on a restricted licence, can still assist overall in preparation for a Public Inquiry.

It also demonstrates the importance of engaging a transport consultancy firm at an early stage of the process.

If you wish to instruct Ms Chestnutt in relation to a Public Inquiry, in relation to driver conduct or a company, please speak to the clerks.