Press release

New traffic commissioners to be recruited

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Two new traffic commissioners will be recruited.

Two new traffic commissioners will be recruited by the Department for Transport, Roads Minister Mike Penning announced today.

These new traffic commissioners will cover the South Eastern and Metropolitan Traffic Area and the North Eastern Traffic Area replacing Philip Brown and Tom Macartney who both retire in October 2011.

Mike Penning said:

The traffic commissioners provide an essential service as independent regulators and provide a vital contribution to road safety by ensuring only those competent and equipped to be operators and drivers are licensed.

We will be recruiting new traffic commissioners to replace Philip Brown and Tom Macartney but in the interim their work will be covered by the remaining commissioners.

In the interim, Richard Turfitt has been appointed to temporarily act as Traffic Commissioner for the South Eastern and Metropolitan Traffic Area in addition to his existing role as Traffic Commissioner for the Eastern Traffic Area. Beverley Bell, Traffic Commissioner for the North Western Traffic Area and Deputy Senior Traffic Commissioner, will be temporarily covering the North Eastern Traffic Area.

Details of the recruitment exercise will be appearing on the Cabinet Office Public Appointments website. The department is keen to encourage applications from anyone who may have a relevant industry background.

Notes to editors

The traffic commissioners are appointed by the Secretary of State for Transport as statutorily independent licensing authorities responsible for bus, coach and goods vehicle operators and for local bus service registrations. They can also take disciplinary action against bus, coach and lorry drivers who commit road and certain other offences. Further details about traffic commissioners.

The role of Senior Traffic Commissioner gives the post-holder important responsibilities to determine how the traffic commissioners perform their statutory functions. For example:

  • determining which statutory functions each traffic commissioner works on - this could allow traffic commissioners to specialise in particular areas - for example, goods vehicle operator licensing or local bus service registrations

  • issuing general directions and guidance to the traffic commissioners and deputy traffic commissioners - directions cover administrative matters such as how to apply for an operators’ licence, guidance covers judicial matters such as how to interpret legislation

The policy and legislation on local bus service registrations are devolved in Scotland. The powers of the Senior Traffic Commissioner do not extend to bus service registrations in Scotland.

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