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Last autumn we reported on a Middlesbrough taxi driver who had begun a one-man crusade to ensure CRB checks are mandatory for all PCV and PSV licence holders. Now the taxi driver has enlisted the help of a Middlesbrough MP and launched an official petition in support of his cause.

Self-employed taxi driver Rasub Afzal told the Gazette Live his effort is something he feels very strongly about. He notes that the current law provides a loophole allowing drivers who are unfit for service to get jobs anyway. Afzal is hoping all drivers who carry passengers will eventually be required to have enhanced criminal background (CRB) checks just as taxi drivers are.

Afzal insists this is not a matter of getting even with other drivers. It is about closing a loophole allowing drivers who would not be able to drive taxis because of criminal issues to be prohibited from operating larger PCVs as well.

Afzal wrote to previous Secretary for Transport, Norman Baker, who responded by saying the government had no plans to change the law. MP Andy McDonald has been enlisted to write directly to the new secretary, Susan Kramer, to say there needs to be a uniform set of regulations for all commercial passenger vehicle drivers.

If the petition drive proves successful, it will lead to a legislative change requiring all drivers of PCVs, regardless of size and passenger numbers, to undergo CRBs prior to employment. Those unfit to drive a taxi would also be unfit to drive any passenger vehicle commercially.

Professional Driving Career

We applaud Mr Afzal’s effort to close what he perceives is a very serious legal loophole. We also agree that every precaution needs to be taken to protect unsuspecting passengers from drivers who are not fit to provide safe transport. We are doing our part by providing high-quality training to drivers who want to earn a PCV or PSV licence.

A PCV licence is generally necessary for large minibuses with the passenger limits exceeding a certain threshold. Coach and bus operators also need a PCV licence by default. The PSV licence is a bit different. There are four levels of licensure based on where and how a vehicle will be used. Those levels are:

You can check with the GOV.UK website or the HGV Training Centre for details regarding each type of licence. At any rate, we can provide the training you need to earn your PSV licence. Our training programmes are designed to get you on the road as quickly as possible by focusing only on the information and skills needed to pass your tests.

Furthermore, our training approach is fast paced and intense. Our experience has shown such an approach is the best way to prepare you for testing. If you’d like more information about PSV licence training, please do not hesitate to call us as soon as you’re ready.

Sources:

Gazette Live – https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/middlesbrough-taxi-driver-urging-change-6521321

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