Fleets, young drivers and problems

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 - 10:01
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EXPERT: John Richardson, of Walmsleys

How would you manage your busy workload and shift patterns if one of your drivers lost their driving licence?

Not only do you potentially have to find a replacement driver, but for the short term, share work out amongst current drivers, resulting in additional costs..

Those who are at most risk are new drivers who have recently obtained a driving licence.

As you will undoubtedly know, new drivers that obtain six or more points in the first two years will have their licence revoked.

If this occurs, the driver has to take both the practical and theory tests again to obtain a full licence.

Not only is this time consuming, but may mean you having to replace the member of staff.

A recent study by BBC Newsbeat shows that in 2012, at least 200 new drivers had their licence revoked every week.

This is an alarming figure to all fleet managers who employ new drivers, showing the vulnerability of the young and inexperienced on our roads.

In total, the DVLA confirmed a total of 10,797 drivers with less than two years’ experience had their licences revoked.

Even more alarming, is the fact that more than half of these drivers were found to have no insurance!

This is obviously an immediate revoke of the licence, the second most common cause of licence revoke being speeding.

Advances in technology mean that drivers who are driving without the minimum third-party insurance are being identified in a much better way.

Effectively, drivers not showing on the central database as insured will face serious ramifications.

Luckily, your drivers will be protected by the company’s motor fleet insurance, and should therefore not receive a conviction for driving without insurance.

However, with speeding being the second most frequent catalyst to a licence revocation, your driving team could be at risk.

Companies like Fleetcover offer specialist advice when it comes to driver management.

Some of the simple things could change the behaviour of one of your driving employees in a company vehicle; making them responsible for the policy excess in the event of a fault accident, or restricting them to the size of a vehicle they drive to limit the temptation to put their foot down.

Although these examples seem like simple ideas, they have shown among our current clients that having to pay a £250 excess in the event of a fault claim makes them a much more considerate driver.

Not only that, slowing down that extra 3-4mph will only benefit the fuel consumption on the vehicle.

I recommend that when a business employs extra or replacement drivers, new or experienced, a copy of both the card and counterpart licence be taken, and updated on either an annual or six-monthly basis.

This allows you to keep track of your drivers, and to make sure that none of them are either driving without licences, or aren’t racking up points in your company vehicles.


  1. Simon some excellent points raised in this article however, I suggest rather than taking copies of licences that unfortunately can not be validated by any visual inspection process because the data held on the counterpart licence was only valid when the DVLA printed the document or it when the last entry was made and the version number has been checked. The licence may or may not be a true representation of the driver record held by the DVLA but unless this is checked against the DVLA driver record a Fleet manager, HR department, Transport Officer etc.., will never know and its will always remain a high risk and many can not afford or wish to take the chance.

    This is why such services like LICENCECHECK exist, to offer an online licence checking and monitoring service using DVLA driver records (with driver consent). This model service has proven time and time again to save time, administration, man hours, removes the paper chase of records and keeping of records. Online checking improves the performance of checks, audit processes and, procedures of any manual process that organisation wish to implement in to their business – Its such a small price to pay to get it right, when getting it wrong has such dire consequences.

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