Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) are those such as buses, minibuses and coaches and are defined by the Public Passengers Vehicles Act 1981 as being a vehicle adapted to carry more than eight passengers, is used for carrying passengers for hire or reward; or a non adapted vehicle which is used for carrying passengers for hire or reward at separate fares in the course of the business of carrying passengers.
Hammond Trotter solicitors provide a range of legal services to PSV driver and operators including:
• PSV driver licence applications
• PSV operator licence applications
• PSV driver conduct hearings
• Public Inquiry representation
• Magistrates Court representation
• Crown Court representation
Public Service Vehicle (PSV) Licences
In order to legally drive certain PSV vehicles you must have an appropriate driving licence which allows you to drive the category of vehicle. The following are the vehicle categories for Public Service Vehicles:
Category D1 driving licence allows you to drive a bus with no more than 16 passenger seats, which is a maximum of 8 metres long and with a trailer of up to 750kg in weight.
Category D1+E driving licence allows you to drive a D1 category vehicle with a trailer which can’t exceed the weight of the vehicle and for which the combined vehicle and trailer weight does not exceed 12,000kg weight.
Buses & Coaches
Category D driving licence allows you to drive a bus with more than 8 passenger seats along with a trailer weighing no more than 750kg.
Category D+E driving licence allows you to drive a category D vehicle with a trailer weighing no more than 750kg.
You must apply to the DVLA for a PSV licence and renew existing licenses every 5 years if you are under 45 years old. If you are over 45 years old you must pass a medical examination before your licence is renewed. In order to hold a PSV licence you must be at least 18 years old.
In addition to the applicable PSV licence you are also legally required to have a Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) to drive a PSV professionally. A Driver CPC is required if you are a EU national or the company for which you work is EU based. You do not require a Driver CPC if:
• The vehicle you are driving is limited to 45kph.
• The vehicle you drive is under control of the armed forces, police, fire or rescue services or a local authority.
• If you a driving a vehicle to test repairs or servicing.
• If you are driving a vehicle for technical development reasons
• If you are driving a vehicle to or from a pre-book appointment at an official testing centre.
• If you are driving a vehicle as part of an official rescue mission or during state of emergency.
• If you are taking or preparing to take a driving licence test or Driver CPC test.
• If you are driving a vehicle for non-commercial carrying of goods or passengers for personal use.
• If the vehicle you drive is driven within 100km of its base and not carrying goods or passengers.
PSV Operators Licences
If you own or run a bus or coach company you will need a PSV operator’s licence applicable to your operation. Depending on your operations scope you will need one of the following vehicle operators licences:
• Standard National Licence
• Standard International Licence
• Restricted Licence
• Special Restricted Licence
PSV licences are regulated by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) and are issued by the Traffic Commissioner for the area of your operations centre. The Traffic Commissioner will issue licences depending on:
• Whether you are of good repute
• Your businesses is financially secure
• The vehicles you operate are maintained
• Your staff are properly qualified and trained
As a PSV driver and operator there are a number of laws which apply to you and of which you should be aware. If you, or one of your drivers, have committed an offence contact our team of PSV solicitors today.
PSV drivers are subject to the laws under the Road Traffic Act 1991, the Transport Act 1968, Working Times Regulation 1998 and also, due to their contact with the public they are subject to the Sex Offenders Act 2003. The penalties under UK law for offences committed range from fines and driving licence penalty points to a prison sentence. More information regarding PSV driver hours offences and tachograph offences can be found on our site.
It is strongly advised that you seek legal advice if you, or one of your drivers, have committed a PSV offence as the consequences on your business and livelihood may depend on it. Our team of specialist PSV solicitors can advise on all legal issues relating the Public Service Vehicles and are experts in helping drivers retain their licence.