Hammond Trotter solicitors are experts in motoring and driving laws. Every year we help businesses and Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) drivers operate within the law and continue to run their businesses or keep their livelihood. There are HGV driving licence rules and obligations which apply to HGV drivers and operators which you should be aware of, the consequences for infringing the rules could be very serious.
Hammond Trotter solicitors provide a range of legal services to drivers and operators including:
• HGV driver licence applications
• HGV operator licence applications
• HGV driver conduct hearings
• HGV overloading
• Public Inquiry and Tribunal representation
• Magistrates Court representation
• Crown Court representation
• Health and safety Law
UK HGV Licence Law
Driving licences for HGVs are issued by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and the law on HGV driving licences is enforced by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). As a driver you must have the correct licence to drive a HGV and as a vehicle operator you must have ensure you drivers have the correct licence as well as having an operator’s licence for yourself.
HGV Driver Laws
Under UK licensing law licences for HGVs are referred to as Large Goods Vehicles (LGVs). The type of category licence you require depends on the weight of the HGV you are driving. The Maximum Authorised Mass (MAM) of a vehicle is the total weight of the vehicle and its goods for more information see our HGV weights page. There are a two types of driving licence categories for LGVs:
Category C Licence
With this licence you can drive vehicles weighing over 3,500kg with a trailer weighing up to 750kg.
Category C+E Licence
This licence allows you to drive category C vehicles with a trailer weighing over 750kg.
To apply for a LGV licence you must be over 18 years of age and have the correct provisional requirements on your existing licence. You must apply to the DVLA for a licence and to renew it every 5 years if under 45 years of age. If you are over 45 years old you are required to provide a clearance medical report to renew your licence.
As well as passing the LGV licence theory and practical tests you must also hold a Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) before you can work as a HGV driver professionally. You are required to have a Driver CPC if:
You are EU state national resident.
You work for a company based in the EU.
After passing the Driver CPC you will be issued with a Driver Qualification Card (DQC) which you will need to keep with you at all times when you are driving.
As a HGV driver you must adhere to the motoring laws and driver with good conduct. You could face fines and driving licence penalty points if you are caught breaking the law. A driving disqualification is possible for serious offence as well as gaining over 12 penalty points.
HGV Operators Licences
If you own or run a road haulage business which employs HGV drivers you will need an operator’s licence in order to work within the law. The drivers you employ must all hold valid Driver CPCs the correct licences for the loads they carry. Depending on your operations scope you will need one of the following vehicle operators licences:
• Standard National Licence
• Standard International Licence
• Restricted Licence
The rules on operator licence are enforced by the DVSA and infringements could mean a Traffic Commissioner Public Inquiry and the loss of your licence to operate. It is very important that you have the correct licences for the type of work you do.
We are expert motoring solicitors who work in road traffic offences and HGV licensing issues and who specialise in helping drivers keep their licences. If you or your business needs to stay on the road contact one of our specialist Heavy Goods Vehicle solicitors today.