The Road Haulage Association has welcomed a new campaign against lorry drivers who use magnets to stop their tachograph recording time spent driving.
VOSA and the police have this week started issuing leaflet warnings to UK and foreign drivers from, highlighting potential penalties of a fine of £5,000 fine or two years in jail.
These warnings must be backed by action by VOSA and the police bringing drivers swiftly before the courts, the RHA says. That is especially true of foreign drivers. Whereas UK drivers can normally be easily traced, it is tempting to take lesser action against foreign drivers because of the practicalities of getting them into court.
Distorting the tachograph record in this way is commonly used to disguise gross abuses of drivers’ hours rules, which is a major road safety hazard. It also distorts fair competition and pushes others to break the rules.
“We have been stressing the ministers that the UK must send out a clear signal that the use of magnets is a really serious offence will not be tolerated in this country,” RHA Director of Policy Jack Semple said.
“There is an important message here, also, for the magistrates courts. We look to them to reflect the seriousness of the offence in their penalties, including revoking the licence of guilty drivers,” Semple said.