Friday, 31 July 2015

Targeted enforcement to drive rogues out of industry . . .

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Targeted enforcement to drive rogues out of industry

Cited at:
http://transportoperator.co.uk/2015/07/03/targeted-enforcement-to-drive-rogues-out-of-industry/


The Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is to focus its roadside enforcement efforts upon those operators that it believes to be serious lawbreakers, and work towards scrutiny of electronic records to keep the rest compliant, according to Caroline Hicks, the head of enforcement transformation at the agency.

In a presentation at the Microlise Transport Conference in Coventry entitled New Agency, New Approach, Hicks outlined her ‘next generation enforcement’ strategy: envisioning a future which would be without random roadside checks, but where operators would welcome electronic overview of their activities by DVSA as an alternative.

“The focus should be on compliance, not enforcement,” she said.

She pointed out that a ‘clear’ roadside encounter with DVSA could cost the operator concerned up to £4,000 because of the delay, even though there was no fault found.

“That figure,” she said, “isn’t my figure. It’s what a major supermarket has told me.”

But targeted enforcement could leave lawful operators to get on with business, and push up costs for non-compliant operators to the point where they would be forced out of the industry, Hicks argued.

She pointed out an example in which a notoriously non-compliant operator was singled out for roadside targeting.

“In a four-hour period, we stopped 24 of his vehicles, and 17 of them were not allowed to leave the test space. Effectively, we priced him out of the market in the space of those four hours.”

Her objective was to get operators to open their electronic records for inspection by DVSA – at any time and without permission.

At the start of her presentation, she asked how many delegates would be happy for DVSA to be able to examine their driver and vehicle records at any time and without their knowledge. The majority (52 per cent) said no.

She then explained how DVSA could ‘triangulate’ data yielded by automated number plate recognition and vehicle and driver records to identify potential problems.

Remote enforcement (as successfully trialled in the Western traffic area) meant that DVSA could ask for access to records for vehicles and drivers, rather than demand them during a site visit.

DVSA was also looking at ways in which it might be possible to interrogate moving vehicles using their on-board diagnostic and telematics systems.

The agency was looking for conformance as an objective, and giving DVSA open access to records meant that conforming operators could avoid roadside checks and site visits, while the agency concentrated upon checking non-compliant operators at the roadside.

When random roadside checks were made, 13 per cent of vehicles stopped were non-compliant. But there were large variations in the figure across different industry sectors.

“Foreign trucks are a higher-than-average sector for non-compliance, as are foreign drivers in British-registered trucks,” Hicks reported. “Our message is, become compliant or get out of the industry.”

“We accept that you will never get 100 per cent compliance: components fail on vehicles and circumstances change on the roads.

“We need to know what a ‘good’ operator looks like. We already know what a bad operator looks like, but does a good operator have one tacho infringement per 100 days, or 1,000 days?

“We want to work with operators to set up good systems.”

At the conclusion of Hicks’ presentation, she asked how many operators would be willing to disclose the contents of vehicle and driver records such as tachograph and CPC details to the DVSA, if doing so reduced the likelihood of their drivers being stopped?

84 per cent said they would be willing to do this.

The table below shows current versus future DVSA activity for operators with differing levels of compliance. Whereas current roadside enforcement efforts are spread more evenly, ‘next generation’ enforcement would be progressively targeted, with the worst operators subject to massive resources. Source: DVSA presentation, Microlise Transport Conference.






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