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The owner of a Scottish haulage company has been denied an HGV license after one of his drivers was caught operating illegally. The determination was made by Scotland’s traffic commissioner Joan Aitken. In her written decision, Aiken said haulier John Baird is not an individual in whom she can ‘repose trust’.

Baird’s trouble began when his father passed away in the spring of 2012. He told the traffic commissioner he intended to take over his father’s HGV license in order to continue the family business. However, he delayed taking the action necessary to do so. In the meantime, he continued operating company vehicles in violation of the law.

In July of this year, while Baird’s application was still under review, VOSA personnel pulled over an HGV that was not displaying an operator’s disc. A further inquiry revealed that neither the truck nor its trailer had a valid MOT. The driver identified himself as an employee of John Baird.

In his defence, Baird said he needed to take a chance with the illegal lorry in order to avoid losing the business to competitors. The traffic commissioner understood the dilemma but said nonetheless Baird’s behaviour violated the trust necessary to operate as a road haulier.

In addition to not granting Baird an HGV license, Aitken also banned him from working as a transport manager indefinitely. There is no word on what would be needed to be done to lift that disqualification.

The Law Is the Law

While we certainly understand Mr Baird’s plight, we also understand that the law is the law. Operating a haulage operation illegally is very difficult to justify under any circumstance. Furthermore, requiring an HGV driver to operate a company vehicle, knowing it is illegal, takes things to the next level. Baird’s compulsion of his employee is likely what led to his disqualification as a transport manager.

As an industry, haulage and transport is made up mostly of dedicated individuals who make every effort to comply with the law at all times. Regrettably, there are small handful of operators and drivers who blemish the good reputations of everyone else. It is unfortunate.

Becoming HGV Driver

Despite the recent goings-on in Scotland, becoming an HGV driver is still a great career choice. Driving professionally offers you unique challenges, adventure, long-term stability, and good pay. It is an excellent career choice whether you are just starting out or you have been negatively impacted by redundancy.

Earning your HGV licence starts when you get in touch with us at that HGV Training Centre. Our HGV Training programmes are designed to provide you with all the information you need to pass your test. When you train with us, you can be ready to look for work in a matter of months.

We offer training for almost all commercial licenses at more than 45 facilities throughout the UK. We are also available for individual or fleet-wide CPC training as required by law. Remember, all HGV drivers must complete CPC training by September of next year.


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