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Ask the MAC – February 2022

Discover answers to questions frequently put to the Member Advice Centre.


One of our drivers has completed his 35 hours of periodic training and is awaiting their new card as the previous DQC (Driver Qualification Card) has expired. Can they still drive while this is being processed and sent out?

You can still drive professionally while waiting for your card if both of the following apply: firstly that you have completed your periodic training and secondly that the training provider has recorded the training (they must do this within five working days of the training ending). You can check this on the ‘Check your Driver CPC periodic training hours https://www.gov.uk/check-your-driver-cpc-periodic-training-hours.

If you do not receive your new card within 20 days of the date you are due to receive it you will need to contact the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). You will have to pay £25 if you take longer than three months to tell the agency it has not arrived or if it is sent to an old address because you have not updated your licence.


Our first electric vehicle is joining our fleet soon. It has a maximum authorised mass that exceeds 3,500kg but is no more than 4,250kg. Are we correct in thinking there is a concession that will allow this vehicle to be driven by a driver who only holds a category B licence?

In July 2018, the government laid legislation that allows a holder of a category B driving licence to drive an alternatively fuelled vehicle not exceeding 4,250kg, provided that it is not driven outside of Great Britain. The measure requires a driver wishing to take advantage of the concession to undertake a minimum of five hours of training. In addition, the vehicle can only be used for the transportation of goods and cannot tow a trailer.

The concession came into force on 29 April 2019 (this is due to be reviewed in 2023).


When checking the MOT history on one of our vehicles on GOV.UK it states that the vehicle was tested in March 2020 and given a 12-month extension which would have taken the expiry to March 2022, however we were able to get the vehicle tested in February 2021. The certificate states that it will expire at the end of February 2022. Are we able to go by the March date due to the CTE that was issued?

As the vehicle was tested in February, the CTE date would be overwritten and a new anniversary date created for February 2022, meaning that this is the date that must be adhered to.


Our tyre supplier can only source axle three rear drive tyres (dual wheels) with a ply rating/load index of 152/148 rather than 154/148 as shown on the plating certificate. Although the size and everything else matches, is this legal and would it pass its annual goods vehicle test?

IM7 in DVSA’s Heavy Goods Vehicle Inspection Manual states:

“The Load Index (LI) may consist of one or two numbers e.g. 154 or 146/143. Where two numbers are displayed the first refers to the use of the tyre in single formation and the second in twin formation.”

Therefore, with the 152/148 tyres fitted to your vehicle, they will only pass the annual test if they are part of a twin formation; if they are used in single formation, they will not pass the annual test because the first number does not match the values on the plating certificate.


We have had a follow up audit after a roadside stop asking for more data from three of our vehicles and drivers. One of the areas that the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) requires is the GPS data for these vehicles. Are they able to request this data?

Section 99ZA(1)(c) of the Traffic Act 1968 gives the DVSA the powers to request: any book, register or other document required by the applicable community rules or which the officer may reasonably require to inspect for the purpose of ascertaining whether the requirements of the applicable community rules have been complied with. The GPS tracking data would fall within the applicable section where it is required to enable a full analysis of a driver’s records.


Due to a new business contract opportunity, we have applied to use a new site as an operating centre on our operator’s licence. We understand that the process can take up to nine weeks. The issue we have is the customer wants us to start the contract within the next three weeks. Can we do this whilst waiting for the application to be approved?

Unfortunately not. The legislation is quite clear on this matter. Section 7 of the Goods Vehicle (Licensing of Operators Act) 1995 states that, “A person may not use a place in a traffic area as an operating centre for vehicles authorised to be used under an operator’s licence issued to him in respect of that traffic area unless that place is specified as an operating centre of his in that licence”. Any contravention of this requirement would be liable to a fine of up to £1,000 with the potential for further action by the Traffic Commissioner against the operator licence holder.


We carry out a driver assessment in scenarios in 3.5t vehicles where it is part of a pre-employment requirement, or where a driver in question has had a number of accidents over a short period of time and may require further or more extensive training. 

If the assessors are not providing any feedback do they need to be Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs)? 

Under the circumstances you have described, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency’s (DVSA) position is to recommend that the organisation engages the services of a DVSA registered fleet driver trainer.

These are approved driving instructors who have undertaken additional training and specialise in providing an assessment of the driving skills of someone who drives a car or van as part of their employment. They are able to provide on-going commentary and feedback throughout the assessment drive, if necessary. And they are qualified to provide any remedial training which a full licence holder might need – which requires a different approach to licence acquisition instruction.


I’ve been informed by a driver that all vehicles must return to base every eight weeks from 2022. I can’t find any information on it; do you have any information on the new rule?

The Department for Transport (DfT) has indicated that the return to base rule for vehicles is not part of the Trade and Co-operation Agreement which now governs GB operators when in EU member states, rather than EU regulation. The worry, however, might be whether EU enforcement agencies know and understand this and unfortunately this is an unknown to us.

Published On: 03/02/2022 16:00:16


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