Part of an HGV Drivers’ duties is to carry out a pre-use check on his vehicle.
It’s part of the operator licence requirements. The operator is responsible for ensuring checks are carried out by his driver and the driver is in turn responsible for carrying out the checks.
Failure to carry out and record a pre-use check can affect both the operator’s and driver’s vocational driving licence.
In a recent six month survey conducted by VOSA, it was found that of the PG9 prohibition notices issued in roadside checks, 74% were for obvious faults that should have been detected by the driver in his check. Which begs the question – did the driver do the checks?
When an operator applies for an Operator licence, standard or restricted, he must agree in writing that pre-use vehicle checks will be carried out and faults duly recorded in writing, (one of the undertakings on the GV79 application form).
The pre-use check is intended to identify any faults on the vehicle and ensure it is roadworthy and safe to use. The check is carried out visually at ground-level with no tools and should only be seen as a basic inspection.
Normally, it should take no more than 15 minutes. The check should be recorded, dated and signed by the person carrying out the check. If no faults are identified after checking the vehicle, then ‘no defects’ should be recorded.
If the vehicle has defects and is not safe, it should not be taken out onto the road. Defects should be reported to the appropriate person and be rectified.
The operator should make clear to drivers what defects he may remedy and what should be dealt with by maintenance staff. (For example: Oil to be topped up by drivers or not? Light bulbs to be changed by drivers or not?)
VOSA have indicated that in drivers’ hours checks, they will now be looking for a duty period on charts/digital cards prior to vehicle movement where the driver was carrying out his check.
Movement immediately after chart/card insertion would indicate either no check being performed or no back-recording of duty time prior to insertion.
A guide as to how to carry out a pre-use check can be found on our Driver CPC Module 4 practical test page.
If you need to pass the new Driver CPC module 4 practical knowledge examination then you will be required to carry out a pre-use check.
For further information and training advice please contact one of our approved local training providers..