Haulage companies everywhere should be aware that the Driver and Vehicles Standards Agency (DVSA) is putting its foot down when it comes to tampering with a vehicle’s exhaust emission control system. Operators who are trying to cheat the standards and get around the red tape usually do this to save money (it can push back their fleet’s investment costs) and keep their vehicles on the road for longer periods of time. And, although there are only a select few that are a part of this, the DVSA is looking to stamp the practice out completely.
Read on to find out how they are ensuring operators all over the country are remaining honourable.
Cracking On with Cracking Down
In an attempt to reduce those trying to cheat their emission readings, the DVSA has instituted a roadside check system in which they pull buses, lorries and coach operators over at random to perform spot inspections. By doing this, they’re looking to see if drivers are misrepresenting data relating to their road emissions, and making sure they’re are abiding by all rules and regulations set in place to maintain the general safety and wellbeing of road users.
If a haulier is found to have dismantled parts of their vehicle or used a device that alters their emission results (these tools are known as emission cheat devices), they are initially given a ten day period with no consequences to sort the problem out. However, if they make the decision not to get the issue fixed, they must either pay a fine of £300 or risk having their vehicle retired early.
This grace period gives smart operators the chance to amend their behaviours with no consequences – a win-win for everyone involved.
The FTA’s Response
The action by the DVSA has been backed by the Freight Transport Association (FTA). As they take this type of offence quite seriously, they believe that this is a proportional and responsible reaction to the issue at hand. Although these illegal activities are carried out by a minority of operators, they see their actions as painting haulage companies and the rest of the logistics industry in a negative light. They are firm believers that these emission cheat devices simply have no place in the trade.
The freight industry is already highly regulated and this type of random spot checking is an ideal way (and an easy one) to weed out any cheats, and make sure haulage remains safe, secure and legal.
With the help of the DVSA’s new policies and their lack of leniency for those breaking emissions laws, they’ll be able to stay on top of the cheaters and allow the hardworking employees of Britain’s haulage companies keep the UK happily moving forward.
Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Connecting professionals across the UK and Europe through their website, Haulage Exchange provides services for matching haulage companies or self-employed drivers with jobs in road transport and haulage work. Over 5,300 member companies are networked together through the Exchange to fill empty capacity, get new clients and form long-lasting business relationships.