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Recyclers loses licence for running dangerous vehicles

An east London recycling firm has had its operating licence revoked after regulators found it was running vehicles in a “shocking state”.

Traffic commissioner Nicholas Denton found that Remarkable Recycling Solutions ran vehicles with numerous defects, posing a danger to other road users and the company’s own drivers.

The firm’s director, Joseph Esqulant, was also disqualified from operating goods vehicles for 12 months.

Denton said the company had been grossly negligent while running heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

During the inquiry, he heard the company:

  • repeatedly ran vehicles on the road with known defects. One had over 40 defects, many of which made the vehicle unroadworthy
  • allowed two vehicles on the road with insecure loads, one of which posed a health and safety risk to the driver
  • reported a driver’s conviction and ban from driving for a dangerous load offence
  • picked up two S marked prohibitions denoting a significant failure of maintenance for safety critical defects in the same month
  • allowed  a driver with no qualifications to carry out routine safety inspections  on  vehicles because  it  was too expensive to pay a maintenance contractor
  • had not taken action against drivers committing offences relating to their duties
  • had no driver defect checks in place. The checks were being carried out wholly inadequately by the director
  • had  no system for checking drivers had the correct driving licence, or for educating or disciplining drivers

The  evidence, presented by examiners from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), led Denton to conclude he had no confidence at all in Esqulant’s ability to run a compliant vehicle operation.

He said: “The operator has put safety at risk for a lengthy period which still continues today, and has competed unfairly against operators in the sector who comply with the rules.”

Esqulant said the loss of his licence would mean the end of his business. He also said the company was planning to employ someone to sort out the vehicle and driver standards and admitted he had not had time to do things properly before.

However, Denton said Esqulant had shown almost no knowledge of his operator licence responsibilities.

He added that Esqulant should acquire the necessary knowledge and skills to demonstrate that he takes compliance, safety and fair competition seriously, if ever he wanted to apply for a licence after his period of disqualification has ended.

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