DTC adjourns over maintenance concerns
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A DEPUTY Traffic Commissioner has ordered that a further maintenance inspection be carried out in June on a C.astleford, West Yorkshire firm appearing at its third public inquiry; the DTC then adjourned the hearing.
Kenneth Howley Transport, which holds a licence for 18 vehicles and 14 trailers, had been called before North-Eastern DTC Patrick Mulvenna. It had appeared at previous public inquiries in 2002 and 2003.
Vehicle examiner Andrew Williams said there had been four immediate and nine delayed prohibitions since March 2003, one S-marked following a wheelloss incident. He carried out an unannounced maintenance investigation last July, examining four vehicles and issuing two delayed prohibitions. There were instances where the stated inspection period had been exceeded, and defects reported by drivers had not always been signed off as rectified. All the systems were in place, but they were not working effectively.
Director Kenneth Howley said that not one of the prohibitions had been S-marked since 2004. He added that some inspection records damaged by a flood had not been filed, and that the two fitters employed at the time had since left. The flood had been triggered by a pump failure in the nearby sewage works. The vehicle that had caused concern over possible missed inspections had been sold in 2005 and repurchased in February 2007. Howley also said that driver training was to take place over the next four weeks, and thereafter annually. In addition, drivers were in the process of taking an NVC) course. Audit spot checks on the daily walk-round checks were now being carried out. He was pleased with the initial pass rate at annual test of 75%, although there was still room for improvement.
For the company, Gary Hodgson said there was no evidence that safety inspections had been missed altogether, adding that the company had come a long way since the licence was curtailed in 2003.