Foreign truckers who drive tired and put other drivers’ lives at risk will be given on-the-spot fines under proposals launched by Roads Minister Stephen Hammond.
All hauliers who drive for longer than the law allows risk a fine, but penalising truckers without a valid UK home address is harder because they cannot be issued with a court summons.
A consultation launched today (16 June 2014) will look at proposals to give enforcement officers the option of giving truck drivers an on-the-spot fine instead of taking them to court.
The proposals – which would mean officers could issue a penalty for offences committed up to 28 days after an offence – would also allow enforcement of the new HGV road user levy for similar periods. The levy was introduced earlier this year to ensure foreign hauliers make a fair contribution towards UK revenue.
Stephen Hammond said:
Tired drivers are more prone to accidents which is why there are limits on the number of hours hauliers can drive. Sadly a selfish minority ignore this, putting others’ road safety at risk.
The option to issue a fine for this offence would provide an effective weapon in the fight against irresponsible driving by both foreign and UK drivers.
This and the fact we introduced the new HGV levy earlier this year shows we are determined to ensure UK drivers and their foreign competitors are on a level playing field.
The consultation – which runs until Monday 11 August 2014 – will seek views on enabling enforcement officers to issue fines for driving extra hours or not paying the HGV levy 28 days prior to being pulled over.
Proposals to enable historical drivers hours offences to be enforced would bring the UK in line with other EU member states.