Traffic Commissioners – work carries on despite pandemic – shows annual report

The Traffic Commissioners (TCs) for Great Britain have today (10 August 2021) released their Annual Report for 2020 to 2021.

It comes as a government review of the TCs’ function starts and the TCs publish a new set of Strategic Objectives for 2021-2023.

In it, the TCs provide updates on their strategic objectives to 2021, detail their new objectives and reflect on the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As with the previous report, a significant part of the report is given to continuity of service through the pandemic, notably on issues such as:

  • Issuing of Exemptions
  • Processing of applications
  • Periods of Grace
  • Maintaining vehicle safety
  • Maintaining skills
  • Regulatory Action
  • Local Bus Service Registration

As the previous set of Strategic Objectives have now come to an end, this was an appropriate time to reconsider the support the Traffic Commissioners can give to industry, with a new set of objectives.

These areas are discussed in the report and include business recovery, legislative change, local bus services, better targeted regulation and helping compliant businesses.

The reflections of the Traffic Commissioners touch on some very important current issues: traction-only operators, driver shortages and the incoming legislation on LGVs between 2.5 and 3.5 tonnes.

Reflecting on the report, the Senior Traffic Commissioner Richard Turfitt said: “This report identifies some of the key achievements during a very difficult year for the transport industry.

“Traffic commissioners take responsibility for effective licensing and regulation of the commercial vehicle industries, but the success of any public service relies on the energy and willingness of those at the frontline.

“People are at the heart of the Office of the Traffic Commissioner (OTC) and the delivery of quality services to our stakeholders; it remains the mission of everyone in OTC to promote safe, fair, efficient, and reliable passenger and goods transport.

“It is right to record the exceptional efforts made during the last year.”

The Annual Report also contains statistics describing the licensing and regulatory activities. The data recognises the achievements of the commissioners and their support during the year, notably:

  • 14,080 operator licence applications and variations processed
  • 21,717 local bus registrations processed
  • 1054 public inquiries determined
  • 178 preliminary hearings held
  • 46 Senior Team Leader (STL) interviews held
  • 10,442 vocational driver cases closed


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