At the HGV driver training centre all our facilities include training and instruction so that the legal requirements are all met for HGV drivers. You maybe or may not be aware but all drivers are technically responsible for all goods they carry in there Lorries regardless of what it is. HGV drivers are required to know and take all reasonable measures to make sure they are not carrying an illegal load meaning the goods on board or passengers. This does cause a big conundrum for HGV drivers who pick up there already packed and sealed trailers as you can imagine.
HGV drivers do rely on the transport shipper’s word to provide they are giving a truthful report on good they are carrying and loading in to the HGV trailers for the driver to take away for delivery. To open trailers units and have them inspected is almost impossible due to the industry relies on exact scheduled deliveries and timings for maximum efficiency. Good news is shippers are reliable 99.9% of the time. But what happens with that 1% of shippers reports that are fraudulent you ask and the HGV driver is unknowingly driving it for delivery?
Reports of HGV UK addresses relating to illegal goods such as animal parts, is not a problem in the UK, but don’t be fooled it does exist. United for wildlife started by prince harry and the Duke and duchess of Cambridge are now working very close with the logistic industry to bring an end to this activity. If they succeed in keeping the illegal animal parts trading out of the UK, then this plan could be put in place in other illegal transport to bring this down.
The truth is that the criminal enterprises have created some very creative and clever ways to ship illegal cargo disguised as the real goods. HGV drivers training regardless of how thorough or in depth it may be, are to a degree powerless to stop illegal cargo getting transported unless they have proof and direct knowledge of fraud or criminal activity. And the likelihood of the driver having knowledge can be slim. Therefore other action needs to be developed and put in place.
Your Legal Responsibilities
Being an HGV driver in the UK, it is your responsibility to know the legal responsibilities within the illegal transport of goods and passengers. As mentioned before, you being the driver of the vehicle and the goods on board you are responsible for everything you carry. This is why it is so important you make sure you are fully aware and make an everyday effort to check your load and that it is legal.
In the event that you are found with any illegal cargo. The correct authority will have the incident under investigation straight away to determine the responsibility you hold over the incident. If in the event they find you took every step possible to make sure that anything illegally was tried not to get on board by law, you would face no action being taken against you. In this event we would recommend you consult with your fleet manager or your lawyer if you wish to know what constitutes reasonable effort.
Here at HGV Driver Training Centre we provide the highest level and comprehensive HGV Training courses and more specialised advance courses for the types of issues that have been covered in the information above. So you know your responsibilities and your rights as a professional HGV driver.