Research consistently confirms that the lowest accident rates are displayed by companies with clear driving standards and unambiguous driving rules, including effective driver vetting procedures.
Why Carry Out Driver Vetting?
- On the UK’s road network, 10 people are killed and around 1,000 others are injured every day
- Nearly 33% of all fatalities involve the use of a company vehicle, whether it is a car, motor bike, van or commercial vehicle
- Over 65% of all company vehicles will be involved in a road accident in the next 12 months
- 33% of all large motor vehicle insurance claims involve drivers who have been employed for less than 12 months, regardless of age or driving experience
The above facts make for gruesome reading but sadly, are very true. Road accidents touch every level of society, every level of responsibility and virtually every fleet operator in the world.
The final bullet point is probably the quickest and easiest area to control. The process should start with the completion of an ‘Additional Drivers Form’ along with a Driving Licence check.
Driver Licence Checking
When recruiting any new employee required to drive on company business, whether it be a company, ‘hired in’ or ‘Grey Fleet’ vehicle you should first view the drivers original credit card driving licence. Up until recently it would have been accompanied by the paper counterpart which would have contained details of any driving convictions, bans, points and fines previously issued by the courts. However since the abolition by the DVLA of the paper counterpart licence on 8th June 2015 it is no longer possible to check endorsement or points without applying to the DVLA.
To coincide with the removal of the counterpart licence the DVLA have created two new systems, both of which are free to use.
View My Licence – This system provides the licence holder with all year round ‘on-line’ access to their licence details. The system is free of charge and 24/7. To access this online checking system the licence holder will need to log into https://www.gov.uk/view-driving-licence and enter the following information.
- Driver Licence number
- National Insurance Number
These security checks will need to be entered onto the opening screen and a box ticked which confirms that the licence holder authorises DVLA to check their details with other Government departments.
In the event that a driver is unaware of their number, an alternative screen is available where the following information can be entered, and which will provide access to the holder’s licence details.
- National Insurance number
- Full Name
- Date of Birth
It is important to note that the DVLA remain insistent that it is the driver who logs onto this system and not a third party.
Share My Licence – This system allows the third party to view most of the above details such as type of licence, Full / Provisional / Disqualified, endorsements and penalty points as well as what vehicles they can legally drive and is available free of charge 24/7.
To verify the driver’s licence details the third party / employer will need to log into https://www.gov.uk/check-driving-information and enter the last eight digits of the licence number and the access code. Note that this code is case sensitive and must be used within 21 days of it being generated.
Once you have established that the driver does have a valid licence it is worth remembering that you are then required to be ‘competent’ to ensure that this licence entitlement is of the correct category to suit the vehicle you intend them to drive, i.e. Category B for a car, etc. and that you fully understand what the penalty points issued are for. For more information on penalty points see https://www.gov.uk/penalty-points-endorsements/endorsement-codes-and-penalty-pointscodes-and-penalty-points