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Ask the MAC – June 2022

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


Our driver was stopped this morning and asked for his driving records. When the enforcement officer checked the driver’s records, he instructed our driver that the records were incomplete as they did not show his daily and weekly rest. Is this correct?

Yes. On 20 August 2020 new drivers’ hours rules regarding the recording of EU drivers’ hours came into force. The changes saw the introduction of recording holiday and sickness under the rest symbol. This also saw the more stringent enforcement of recording drivers’ rest periods which must be shown on a driver’s records. This now means that all a driver’s activities, including rest and holidays, needs to be recorded for every 24-hour period. These entries must be recorded using one of the following methods.

• Written manually on a chart.

• Written manually on a printout from a digital or smart tachograph.

• Made by using the manual input facility of a digital or smart tachograph.


We checked our OCRS score recently and to our horror we are in the red. How would this happen as we have not had any MOT failures? Our licence has always been green.

The Operator Compliance Risk Score (OCRS) is based on actual data from events or tests. Points are attributed when a vehicle test or an enforcement encounter result in a defect or infringement being identified. A baseline score is then created by dividing the number of points accumulated by the number of events over a three-year period, giving an average number of points per event. The baseline score is then allocated a colour status of green, amber or red.

As time moves on, encounters and test results will fall outside of the three-year period and your score will change. It is important to remember that the score is merely a snapshot in time and likely to change as they are recalculated every week for a rolling three-year period.


I had a driver complete his CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) units some time ago but has never received an updated card. I don’t have access to his online CPC credits as he has set it up himself and lost the information. Is there any way I could chase his card? The current one runs out in 2024.

Drivers who complete their 35 hours of periodic training prior to the fifth year of the training cycle will have the DQC (Driver Qualification Card) issued within the fifth year, on the anniversary of the completion of the periodic training. Once this card has been issued, it may be used immediately, and the old card does not have to be carried in addition to the new one.

It would, however, be worthwhile getting the driver to get the login credentials for the online periodic training check. The driver can request a new password by clicking the ‘forgotten password’ option in this link.


We have a trailer due a Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) inspection and a regular service on the same date. Does the LOLER cover the service, or do both need doing?

The LOLER examination would not count towards the service, so both LOLER and the service would need to be completed when due.

The Health and Safety Executive’s INDG422 guidance states that thorough examinations under LOLER or inspections are not the same as routine maintenance. Thorough examinations may indicate areas of poor maintenance but are not intended to replace the maintenance, and that maintenance is a requirement under the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 applying to all work equipment, including lifting equipment.


One of my drivers has been told that DVSA want to see 15 minutes “other work” at the start of the day for a vehicle walk around check. It doesn’t take him that long, so does he have to wait around until the 15 minutes are up?

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has not set a time limit as such and there is no specific legislation on the matter. Of course, there are offences for driving a vehicle in an unroadworthy condition and you are obliged to ensure your drivers carry out defect checks as part of your operator licence undertakings and so a proper check must be carried out. It is important that enough time is allowed for the completion of these checks and that staff are encouraged and trained to carry them out thoroughly.

DVSA enforcement officers or your Traffic Commissioner are likely to want to see some amount of time allocated to the daily walkaround checks, but it will vary with different vehicles and different circumstances.


My driver’s digital tachograph card is faulty, what do they need to do? Can they continue to drive?

Your driver will need to report this to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) immediately by phone if the card is not working properly. As this is a malfunctioning card it will need to be returned to the DVLA along with the application D777B/DL. You can only drive without a card for up to 15 calendar days if the one you were previously issued is lost, stolen, damaged or malfunctioning. You must be able to prove that you could not use the card during this period, additionally, you must keep drivers’ hours records using printouts produced by the VU (vehicle unit).


We have been looking into taking on a driver, however there would be a requirement for a seat belt extender. Are these legal for commercial vehicles?

The use of seat belt extenders is allowed, and they would fall under the same regulations as a seat belt and therefore must be E marked and approved. They must also be type approved and meet manufacturers’ requirements and recommendations. 

You should also do a risk assessment and document this and check that the seat does not have a maximum carrying capacity that may affect its full function.


We have started to use a subcontracted courier for our smaller loads but are concerned that the driver’s windows are heavily tinted. Is there any law governing the tinting of vehicle windows?

On vehicles first used on 1 April 1985 or later, the front windscreen must let at least 75% of light through and the front side windows must let at least 70% of light through. There are no rules for tinting the rear windscreen or rear passenger windows.

The police or the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) vehicle examiners use light measuring equipment to measure window tint. Vehicles that are found to be tinted too much could end up with a prohibition notice, stopping the use of the vehicle until the extra tint is removed. If this is refused, a penalty notice or court summons would be issued.


Published On: 09/06/2022 16:00:49


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