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A Record Keeping & Compliance Guide For PCV Transport Managers

If you’re a transport manager who oversees a fleet of passenger-carrying vehicles (PCVs), keeping accurate, up-to-date records is not just an admin task – it forms the backbone of your safety and compliance efforts. Following PCV driver hours rules is central to keeping drivers alert and at their best, and record-keeping provides evidence that you’re running a tight ship.

In this article, we look at the importance of accurate recording keeping and cover some practical advice on keeping them organised and accessible.

Accurate, Available Records Are Essential

PCV drivers are exactly like HGV drivers in that they must be protected from overworking and associated fatigue. As such, following driver hours rules is the most prominent reason for accurately documenting driver hours, working times and rest periods.

It goes without saying that when operators fail to keep accurate, up-to-date records, there’s a risk that big fines, legal action and a hit to your professional reputation are soon to follow. Reason enough, you might say, to ensure all your drivers comply.

However, there are other compelling reasons, such as:

  • You’re much less likely to have tired drivers, greatly reducing the risk of your fleet of PCVs being involved in exhaustion-related accidents.
  • Well-organised records allow transport managers to schedule their routes better, meaning you get the most from your drivers while staying within the bounds of the law. The knock-on effect is timetables being met and happier passengers.
  • When the inspectors come knocking, managers who keep good records can easily produce the required documentation, reducing stress and the chances of imposed audit-related penalties.

Some Helpful Tips on Keeping Good Records

Keeping good records doesn’t happen by accident, but the good news is that there’s plenty you can do to ensure that yours are as they should be.

  • Keep Digital Records – While you might want to hold onto your paper records, switching to a digital system can significantly improve the speed and ease by which you store, retrieve and analyse data. They’re much less prone to loss, too.
  • Make Use of Modern Software – There are many software packages for tachograph records and they help transport managers to automate much of the process while alerting you to compliance issues and allowing you to generate audit reports.
  • Download & Analyse Data Regularly – Be sure that the data from your drivers’ tachographs is downloaded at least every 28 days and every 90 days for driver cards. This can help you to identify trends like repeated driver infringements and take the required corrective action.
  • Regular Team Training – It’s imperative that you provide regular training for drivers and other relevant staff in tachograph use and accurate data recording. This training should cover all aspects of recording and downloading data.
  • Run Periodic Reviews – It’s also a good idea to be proactive in reviewing your processes to check for completeness and accuracy. This way, you’ll catch errors early and sail through any upcoming inspections.
  • Safe & Secure Data Storage – By keeping your tachograph records in a safe, secure and organised fashion, you’ll be able to retrieve them quickly and easily when the inspectors call.
  • Keep a Close Eye On Regulation Changes – Regulations have a habit of changing, and it’s down to you as a transport manager to keep up with them. They may affect how records should be kept, so watch them closely.

Record Keeping – a Critical Task for Modern PCV Transport Managers 

There’s a hard way and an easy way to maintain PCV tachograph recording keeping compliance, and the latter is certainly to follow the steps as we’ve laid them out here. Doing so means that you’ll know when your drivers need correcting, and you’ll be fully prepared to breeze through any and all inspections when they pop up.

By leveraging technology and continuously reviewing how you’re doing things, you can be sure that you’re not only complying with the law but also offering a safe and reliable service for your passengers. In the world of PCV transport, your records are every bit as important as the vehicles you operate.

About the author

Jonathan Gilder

Jonathan Gilder

Head of Training and Transport
Jonathan is a distinguished NRI HGV Instructor accredited by RTITB, with certifications in IOSH Managing Safely, RTITB Lift Truck Instruction, and ROSPA Assured PAT Testing. His expertise extends to EdI Level 3 NVQ Assessing, Btec Level 2 in Transportation of Goods by Road, and he is a skilled Trainer in Driver CPC and Incident Investigation from GH Safety.

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