Records are kept (for at least 15 months) of all driver reports that record defects, and all safety inspection, routine maintenance and vehicle repair reports, and that these are made available on request.
When it comes to vehicle maintenance it is essential that you retain evidence of all works completed on your vehicles. This could be a vital if your vehicle was involved in a road traffic collision and questions were raised as to the vehicles roadworthiness. People often forget that paperwork can be the difference between you being able to demonstrate that you have taken all reasonable steps to maintain your vehicle correctly or not. It acts as your audit trail.
If you are a small operator that constantly keeps your finger on the pulse and could answer any question about your vehicles history without any paperwork at all, this is all well and good, but sadly your knowledge is not the objective evidence which the authorities require. In addition to this it will not help you to achieve the import undertaking as to the need to retain fifteen months worth of vehicle records which is one of your undertakings specifically linked to your operators licence.
The reason why you have to retain fifteen months worth of vehicle records is so that a full record will be kept between two MOTs. As some of you will remember over the COVID pandemic, you were given MOT extensions. Prior to the pandemic if there was a genuine reason why you could not get your vehicle inspected you could apply for a three month extension to your MOT which would give you extra time to get it done so by keeping fifteen months you are guaranteed to have a full set of records between MOTs.
Records required could be a combination of the following:-
Driver defect forms
Tachograph calibration certificates
Rolling road brake tests
LOLER tests or thorough examinations
It is essential that you keep all the above records and anything else which is relevant to your operations so you can produce them to the authorities on request and you will be able to rely on them if anything should go wrong.
If you need any assistance with the topics covered in our Total Compliance Fortnightly Focus, please get in touch through firstname.lastname@example.org or by called 0345 9001312.
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