You must use an authorised operating centre
The operating centre is defined as the base or centre at which a vehicle is normally kept. Operating centres must be specified on the licence before they can be used. The term ‘normally kept’ usually refers to where the vehicle is normally parked when not in use. This could, for example, be the operator’s depot or a customer’s premises. Care should be taken to ensure drivers avoid taking in-scope vehicles home at night, as it may cause neighbours to complain. If the vehicle is normally parked there without it being an authorised operating centre (note that a residential street would not normally be considered suitable), you could risk action against your licence. Members are advised to discuss such cases with the Member Advice Centre (0370 605 0000).
Suitability of operating centre
The Traffic Commissioner must be satisfied that any proposed operating centre is suitable for that purpose – covering not only environmental acceptability but also the availability and size of the operating centre and the safety of the access from the public road. In deciding environmental suitability, the Traffic Commissioner must take into account:
- the nature and use of land in
- the vicinity of the operating centre and the effect that granting
- the application would be likely to have on the environment
- the extent to which granting a licence, which will materially change the use of an existing (or previously used) operating centre, will harm the environment in the vicinity
- in the case of land not previously used as an operating centre, any planning permission (or planning application) relating to the operating centre or the land in its vicinity
- the number, type and size of the authorised vehicles which will use the operating centre
- the parking arrangements for the authorised vehicles which will use the operating centre
- the nature and times of use of the operating centre
- the nature and times of use of any equipment at the operating centre
- the number and frequency of vehicles which would be entering and leaving the operating centre
For more information or if you have any questions on authorised operating centres please contact the Member Advice Centre.