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NI will crack down on non-compliant

15th August 2013
Page 5
Page 5, 15th August 2013 — NI will crack down on non-compliant
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

By Roger Brom]

THE HAULAGE regulator in Northern Ireland has warned non-compliant operators that he will not hesitate to use his new powers to revoke 0-licences and issue disqualifications. Donald Armstrong, head of the Department of Environment's Transport Regulation Unit (TRU), told CM the unit's decision to revoke the licence of Craigavonbased Dewart Transport in May, following boss Richard Dewart's conviction for forgery relating to

tachograph records, sends a clear message that such behaviour would not be tolerated.

Dewart's licence was the first to be revoked since the TRU was set up in July last year under the Goods Vehicle (Licensing of Operators) Act (Northern Ireland) 2010. Dewart was also disqualified from holding a licence for five years and from acting as a transport manager. Armstrong said: "The TRU is determined to crack down on operators using tachograph interrupter devices, illegal fuel and a

range of illegal practices to gain competitive advantage. We are working with HMRC and other government agencies to target non-compliant companies."

Armstrong and his deputy Gillian McIntyre have the same powers to revoke and disqualify as traffic commissioners in England, Scotland and Wales, and the pair hold regular meetings with their counterparts in Britain to discuss regulatory issues. "There are a series of public inquiries scheduled and if hauliers are found to have flouted the law,

appropriate regulatory action will follow," Armstong added.

Hauliers in Northern Ireland have welcomed the introduction of a full 0-licensing regime in the province. Willie Oliver, MD of Oliver Transport Services, in Coleraine, said: "Our organisation has been campaigning for a better system of regulation in Northern Ireland for a long time and I'm pleased with the progress."

Ashley McCulla, MD at McCulla (Ireland), in Lisburn, said: "I'm glad more is being done to crack down on non-compliant operators."

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