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The end of section 19 minibuses
roythebus
post Thu, 13 Apr 2017 - 21:47
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As I stated on here about 2 years ago, the end of the illegally operated minibuses is about to happen. Only those operated by volunteer drivers and where no money is paid by or on behalf of the passengers, and for which the driver does not receive anything except expenses, will be allowed to continue.


http://www.route-one.net/articles/Driving/...inibus_guidance
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post Thu, 13 Apr 2017 - 21:47
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mickR
post Thu, 13 Apr 2017 - 23:07
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How many seats determine it a minibus?
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roythebus
post Thu, 13 Apr 2017 - 23:32
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More than 7 passenger seats, 16 or less passenger seats.
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emanresu
post Fri, 14 Apr 2017 - 07:18
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Does this affect the pretend charities such as some of the large not-for-profit organisations. Seems they won't be caught by this.
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roythebus
post Fri, 14 Apr 2017 - 10:04
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Yes, this is actually a clarification of what "the law" has always been. There has been an ongoing campaign from various trade associations and operators over the years to catch out these bogus charities, some of whom operate up to 800, yes 800, minibuses "not for profit", but manage to pay their executives large salaries. some of these "not for profit" companies are the likes of G4S and others who have government contracts, others are the local community bus groups who charge fares for people to go on their minibuses.

These laws can be traced back to the Road Traffic Act 1930 (yes, I've looked), and have always been there, but successive governments have chosen to ignore them as in early years was not too much of problem. that has only arisen in the last 30 years or so when minibuses have become easily available. There's been "test cases" in the UK courts over the years to decide what is "hire and reward" (Rout-v-Swallow Hotels is one that springs to mind) but over the years the DafT in its wisdom has confused the carriage of passengers for hire and reward (any form of payment from or on behalf of the passenger) and driving for hire and reward (getting paid to drive). This eventually ended up in the ECJ in the Glockner Ambulanz-v-<one of the German states>, where the outcome was that the UK "hire and reward" was "any fiscal activity, regardless of the status of the operator".

This led to discussion with the EU authorities, obtaining advice from top level barristers, the UK government facing action from the EU for not obeying and applying UK law; the whole thing may blow up by 27th April unless the UK government obeys its own laws from what I've been told by one of the leading campaigners.

Basically the UK government let these unlicenced operations to drive a coach and horses through its own laws over the years. The section 19 bit of the act gave exemption for small groups such as the local church group or scout group to run a minibus for their own members without the need to get a D1 licence, no psv operators licence and the like; but, as has been mentioned, this has been widely abused over the years so much so that there are now more unlicenced minibuses on the roads than licenced PSVs! Most of those minibuses are carrying people for hire and reward with drivers who are unlicenced, uninsured and the vehicles often fall far short of the maintenance required for psv's. A lot even run regular bus services totally unlicenced! And that is not to mention the breaches of drivers hours that occur on a daily basis. And yes, the 1930 Road Traffic Act also mentions and legislates for drivers hours, rest periods and the like, so no point blaming our friends in the EU for those either!

Several s19 operators have already been caught by DVSA staff and have ben prosecuted and action taken by Traffic Commissioners. There's been a "mock" shock horror reaction from the Community Transport Association over this "sudden change", but they have been fully aware of the situation and the high level talks over the last few years but have chosen to totally ignore them and the outcome.
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notmeatloaf
post Sat, 15 Apr 2017 - 21:44
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Government cuts funding for councils.
Councils cut funding for subsidised bus services.
Government stops community groups running their own bus services.

Next: care costs rise as elderly people no longer able to get to the shops.


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roythebus
post Mon, 17 Apr 2017 - 09:51
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Sounds about right, but government hasn't stopped anyone running their own bus services, has just realised after 30 years or more that they've been giving the wrong "advice" to certain groups about what licences and insurance they need! My view is that an awful lot of money has been wasted on community bus services to provides services that, with a similar amount of subsidy, could have been provided by legitimate licenced operators.
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notmeatloaf
post Fri, 19 May 2017 - 03:58
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QUOTE (roythebus @ Mon, 17 Apr 2017 - 10:51) *
Sounds about right, but government hasn't stopped anyone running their own bus services, has just realised after 30 years or more that they've been giving the wrong "advice" to certain groups about what licences and insurance they need! My view is that an awful lot of money has been wasted on community bus services to provides services that, with a similar amount of subsidy, could have been provided by legitimate licenced operators.

If that's the case why don't the operators make the offer to the council? After all they could find out the subsidy with a FOI request. I can't imagine any council turning down a cheaper and less hassle offer.

Around here any community bus service has to wash it's own face, there is no subsidy. As I said for every penny you save on bus subsidies you will spend much more on care for people who can no longer get to the shops.


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Foxy01
post Sun, 21 May 2017 - 08:45
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QUOTE (roythebus @ Fri, 14 Apr 2017 - 00:32) *
More than 7 passenger seats, 16 or less passenger seats.

Can you show a source for this? All the guidance I can find says more than eight, up to sixteen.
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roythebus
post Sun, 21 May 2017 - 20:52
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QUOTE (Foxy01 @ Sun, 21 May 2017 - 09:45) *
QUOTE (roythebus @ Fri, 14 Apr 2017 - 00:32) *
More than 7 passenger seats, 16 or less passenger seats.

Can you show a source for this? All the guidance I can find says more than eight, up to sixteen.
My error, I should have said more than 8 passenger seats and less than 17 passenger seats which is what the original guidance I was given stated! Nothing is ever clear with government guidance, I only go by what the statute books actually say.
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Harnes
post Thu, 25 May 2017 - 10:47
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Hi,
How does this affect private schools who run a minibus to collect pupils, where the parents are paying for the service and the driver gets paid ? Does the school require an O licence ?





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roythebus
post Tue, 30 May 2017 - 09:05
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QUOTE (Harnes @ Thu, 25 May 2017 - 11:47) *
Hi,
How does this affect private schools who run a minibus to collect pupils, where the parents are paying for the service and the driver gets paid ? Does the school require an O licence ?
Yes. There's been test cases in other EU states that have confirmed that what counts is the carriage of passengers for fiscal activity, regardless of the statuts of the operator. I'll find a link to the case later.

There's also the UK case of Rout-v-Swallow Hotel.

If it's provided entirely free by the school then no it doesn't need an operator's licence but the driver will need pcv entitlement.


At last a newspaper that has picked up on the story, albeit in the Republic of Ireland. Operations in Ulster will also be affected by this. what the DVLA needs to do is not to issue "guidance", but to issue a statement of law just to make things crystal clear.
http://www.irishnews.com/news/2017/05/30/n...forced-1038615/
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Harnes
post Tue, 30 May 2017 - 09:52
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Hi,
Thanks for replying, just to clarify, the school apparently charges the parents "enough" to cover the running costs of the minibus and the driver is relying on their own driving licence cat D1 to drive the bus.

So, does it still stand that the school require an operators licence and the driver requires a pcv licence ?

Thanks again.

PS The school in question runs at least 4 vehicles, used during the day for ferrying pupils to sports events etc

This post has been edited by Harnes: Tue, 30 May 2017 - 09:52


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roythebus
post Tue, 30 May 2017 - 18:25
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My view is that the drivers will need pcv entitlement but the buses will not need to meet psv standard or require section 19 permits. "Enough to cover running costs" is in my opinion "fiscal activity". I've had a lengthy chat with operators in Europe and that is the answer they gave me a few years ago when this raised its head. School buses don't need to meet psv spec or be licenced as such providing they are only used for school purposes, but the drivers must have psv licences and obey drivers hours regulations.

The way things have got out of hand here is what you say, the school has 4 minibuses. A lot started like that, and some now have dozens of minibuses; some fleets run int many hundreds of minibuses, all run "not for profit". <ahem>

This post has been edited by roythebus: Tue, 30 May 2017 - 18:26
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roythebus
post Tue, 6 Jun 2017 - 19:10
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For further clarification of what is "hire and reward" I've just received the latest amendments to the regulations of the tachograph rules following the Lundberg case. This is part of a lengthy list of EU amendments to tachograph and other drivers' hours regulations which sets out to clarify various matters.

Regulation (EC) No 561/2006 is amended as follows:
(1) "(h) (2)
in Article 3, the following point (h) is replaced by the following:
vehicles or combinations of vehicles used for the non-commercial carriage of goods;"
In Article 4, the following point ® is added:

reward or for own account, for which no remuneration is received and which does not generate any income.
'non-commercial carriage' means any carriage by road, other than carriage for hire or reward.

The same will apply to the carriage of passengers.
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roythebus
post Wed, 21 Jun 2017 - 14:04
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Latest update:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-40347630
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roythebus
post Tue, 1 Aug 2017 - 16:49
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Latest update from the DaFT, an official letter telling the Community Transport Groups they MUST get all their drivers in line with category D licences and Driver CPC qualification. All their vehicles MUST be licenced as Public Service Vehicles. i.e. comply with the law as it's always been, not the way the DaFT interpreted it.
http://ctauk.us11.list-manage.com/track/cl...mp;e=2e22699cb1

This post has been edited by roythebus: Tue, 1 Aug 2017 - 16:49
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