DVSA warns non-compliant operators

‘Enforcement is getting smarter’.

That was the message delivered by Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) Chief Executive Alastair Peoples, speaking alongside Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport Stephen Hammond, on 2 April at the launch of the agency, which replaces both the Driving Standards Agency and VOSA..

Making compliance easy and simple, says Mr Peoples, is one of the new organisation’s key aims.

He expects the DVSA to continue VOSA’s move towards enforcement methods other than roadside checks, in contrast to Senior Traffic Commissioner Beverley Bell’s wishes.

Mr Peoples explained: “There is never going to be enough money to provide the level of enforcement we would like, and we have to use it to target the worst operators.

“Roadside enforcement has a very important place in targeting the non-compliant, but roadside events are very expensive, and we have to find another way.”

Increasing use of the Operator Compliance Risk Score (OCRS) system and ANPR cameras will play their part in enforcement, as will Intelligence Officers and education of operators and drivers, he added. “There are lots of other things going on. If we had to depend on roadside enforcement to make it work, that would be a tall order. We have to convince people that being compliant is much cheaper and easier than being non-compliant.”

Mr Peoples also confirmed that better utilisation of Approved Testing Facilities (ATFs) is being explored, which may see them handling prohibition clearance, driving tests and Individual Vehicle Approval (IVA). “We need ATFs to be successful, and are looking at allocating more work to them.”