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In light of the recent conviction of former Cabinet minister Chris Huhne on charges of perverting the course of justice, officials throughout the professional driving industry are warning those who operate company cars and vans not to engage in the practice of point swapping. That very practice caused Huhne’s trouble with the law.

Huhne and his ex-wife, Vicki Pryce, were sentenced to eight months in jail after being found guilty of a point-swapping scheme. According to industry publication Fleet News, some professional drivers in the UK could face similar consequences if they are found swapping points. They are being warned to keep their noses clean.

Point swapping schemes are based on the fact that traffic violations recorded using video surveillance cameras are assigned to registered vehicle owners because there’s no way to say, for sure, who was driving at the time the offence occurred. When the registered driver is in danger of a driving ban due to too many points on his or her license, a family member or friend may agree to take the points. He or she signs the citation, thereby claiming to have been the offending driver.

In England, an accumulation of 12 points within a three-year time span could result in a six-month disqualification of a car or van license. Although such a penalty could be severe from the perspective of the professional driver, it is nothing compared to an eight-month jail term.

Fleet News says fewer than 10% of the drivers employed by the majority of the nation’s fleets currently have more than six points on their licenses. At the same time, more drivers are accumulating points at a faster rate than ever before. Greater enforcement through video cameras is one of the main reasons behind the increase.

Drive Legally All Times

At the HGV Training Centre, we believe it is necessary to underscore how important it is for professional drivers to drive safely and legally all times. Whether you are licensed to drive the largest HGV vehicles or you are running local deliveries with a common van license, the potential consequences of getting caught doing something illegal are not worth any benefit you might derive from it.

We also want to echo the warning regarding point swapping. It is a practice that takes an already bad situation and makes it worse by entangling someone else. Commercial drivers of every type need to take responsibility for themselves and their actions behind the wheel. An HGV, LGB, or PCV license is not a free pass to drive recklessly.

The HGV Training Centre takes highway safety and adherence to law very seriously. Drivers who train with us understand how important it is to be safe and legal. If you are interested in joining the ranks of professional drivers throughout the UK, we encourage you to get in touch with us today. We can provide you with all the training you need to be on the road quickly.

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