O Licence awareness

17 April 2023

The operator licence provides a company the legal right to operate heavy goods vehicles and passenger service vehicles commercially. It is issued by Traffic Commissioners based on trust and a number of promises made.

The promises are called undertakings and the first five relate directly to the driver. This means driver responsibilities are a large part of an operator’s commitment to the Traffic Commissioner.
This month’s O Licence awareness toolbox talk reminds drivers of their responsibilities to help protect the operator licence and how their actions can severely impact the viability of a transport operation. It covers the:

  1. Operator licence – what it is, its purpose and its legal importance as a licence to trade
  2. Role of traffic commissioners and how they regulate the commercial transport sector
  3. Five specific undertakings that all drivers need to be aware of and comply with
  4. Consequences of non-compliance and driver conduct hearings as a formal tribunal hearing

Traffic Commissioners expect operators to comply with the undertakings for the whole period the operator licence is held. The driver’s role and responsibilities are fundamental to helping achieve this.

They need to be fully aware of how their actions can have serious consequences for the business that employs them.