Heavy goods drivers suspended for mobile phone use

Both drivers have been suspended
Both drivers have been suspended

Two HGV drivers have been suspended from professional driving for four weeks after using their mobile phones while at the wheel.

Orson Chichon (42) of Beech Farm Drive, Macclesfield, and David Coates (26) of Victoria Mews, Earby, will not be able to drive large goods vehicles throughout July, the region’s Deputy Traffic Commissioner has ordered.

Both drivers were called to a conduct hearing on June 14th before industry regulator Miles Dorrington for using a mobile phone while driving.

Mr Chichon did not attend the hearing and was dealt with in his absence, after failing to appear at an earlier hearing. He was caught using a mobile phone on two occasions.

His licence was suspended from July 1st for four weeks.

Mr Coates did attend the hearing and told the Deputy Commissioner about the two offences he was reported for.

In March this year, he was caught in a goods vehicle while sat in stationary traffic at a roundabout. The Bluetooth device was not working.

The previous offence, from February 2015, was while he was driving to work. Again, he was sat in stationery traffic when he made a call.

Mr Coates said he had learned from the latest offence and produced a character reference from his employer.

The Deputy Traffic Commissioner concluded that his actions had compromised road safety and noted the second offence had been committed in a large goods vehicle.

He made an order to suspend the professional driving licence held by Mr Coates for four weeks, with effect from July 1st 2017.

The Traffic Commissioners for Great Britain partnered with the Department for Transport’s THINK! Mobiles Campaign earlier this year to raise awareness of changes in the law with regard to mobile phone offending, as well as the dangers of using a hand held mobile phone while driving.

Specific guidance is now available for truck, bus and coach drivers on their responsibilities as professional drivers and the penalties they can face, including from traffic commissioners.

https://extranet.dft.gov.uk/think-downloads/wp-content/uploads/sites/29/2015/02/A5-Leaflet-Online-view.pdf