Government crackdown on foreign lorries

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The government is cracking down on the number of foreign lorries that continue to flout UK road laws. Police and VOSA enforcement officers can now, for the first time, issue on-the-spot fines to all foreign hauliers found exploiting drivers’ hours, overloading lorries, or breaking road safety laws.

Jim Fitzpatrick, road safety minister, said: “We want to keep our roads as safe as possible and these tough new measures mean that any driver who breaks the rules of the road – putting themselves and others at risk – will have to face the consequences.”

Offenders will have to pay a deposit equal to the amount of the fixed penalty or £300 as a deposit in respect of a potential court fine. Penalty points will also be added to the UK licence of any offender, which could lead to a permanent ban from driving in the UK.

Fines can be issued for any of the following:

* Offences under drivers’ hour’s rules
* Failing to hold an Operator’s Licence
* Overloading a vehicle
* Cabotage offences
* Failing to produce evidence of a driver Certificate of Professional Competence.

The levels of fixed penalties range from £30 to £200.

The Freight Transport Association reckons the move will level the playing field between domestic and foreign drivers.

Joan Williams, FTA’s head of road freight and enforcement policy, said: “No longer will foreign drivers be able to break the law with impunity. Any driver issued with a fixed penalty who cannot provide a suitable UK address will be required to pay a deposit at the roadside and if necessary the vehicle will be immobilised until the deposit is paid.”

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