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HGV – insecure loads – FPNs

On May 27, 2016, in Legislation, by PeterSilverman

Under the Road Traffic Act 1991 there are a number of offences that can be committed for insecure loading of Heavy Goods Vehicles. The legislation addresses the use of a vehicle in a dangerous condition stating:

A person is guilty of an offence if he uses, or causes or permits another to use, a motor vehicle or trailer on a road when the weight, position or distribution of its load, or the manner in which it is secured, is such that the use of the motor vehicle or trailer involves a danger of injury to any person.

It also states in relation to loads that causing anything to be on or over the road which could cause danger to other road users is an offence.

The Act also states a person may be liable for prosecution for dangerous driving as follows:

A person is regarded as driving dangerously if it would be obvious to a competent and careful driver that driving the vehicle in its current state would be dangerous. The state of the vehicle includes anything attached to or carried on or in it and to the manner in which it is attached or carried.

Under this legislation there are a number of traffic offences which can be committed for insecure loads which carry driving licence endorsements, fines and prison sentence penalties.

Causing or likely to cause danger by reason of load or passengers

The offence of causing or likely to cause danger by reason of load or passengers is legislated for by the 1991 Act and carries the endorsement code CU50.

The maximum penalty for this offence if committed by a goods vehicle is a £5,000 fine, three driving licence penalty points which stays on a licence for 4 years and a disqualification.

HGV Insecure Load Penalties

The Police and the DVSA have the power to issue penalties for insecure load offences. A Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) of £100 will be issued to the driver of the vehicle carrying an insecure load. The FPN must be paid within 28 days by the driver and depending on the severity of the offence they may also have endorsements added to their driving licence.

The Police or DVSA official will also issue a prohibition notice to the driver, who must pass this to the vehicle’s operator. Serious insecure load offences will receive an immediate prohibition notice (PG9) which immobilises the vehicle with immediate effect. For minor insecure load offences a Vehicle Inspection Notice will be issued which does not prevent the vehicle being used. The driver must inform the vehicle operator of any offences committed and notices issued.

If a driver receives a FPN the operator of the vehicle in which the offence was committed will be sent an Operator Notification Letter. They must then inform the Traffic Commissioner of their driver’s FPN. Failure to notify the Traffic Commissioner is a breach of operator licence conditions which could result in a public inquiry.

Source : 

Peter Silverman
27th May 2016


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