12 May 2011
New Government moves to hand out on the spot fines and points for careless driving could see a rapid increase in the number of company car and van drivers with points, says CFC Solutions.
Transport Minister Philip Hammond unveiled proposals yesterday that are likely to include immediate fines and points for actions such as tailgating, undertaking and "cutting up" other drivers.
Additional proposals include new measures on drink and drug driving, and a wider range of training and retraining options for new drivers and those who have been previously given points or banned.
Neville Briggs, managing director at CFC, said: "These are some good ideas in the new Government proposals. Anything that brings furthered structured driver training into the legal framework is to be generally welcomed.
"We especially like the idea that drivers who have been previously banned will have to undertake compulsory training before they are re-awarded their licence. This may help change the behaviour of a small but troublesome group of drivers."
However, Briggs said, the idea of on-the-spot fines was likely to prove controversial and probably unpopular.
He explained: "There is some merit to the idea, especially if it can be enforced in a consistent and fair fashion. However, it seems to combine two ideas that have proven very unpopular with voters - on the spot fines and driving fines."
Briggs added that, if the on-the-spot fines were enforced by police in a forceful manner, it could lead to a rapid and sustained increase in the number of company car and van drivers with points.
He explained: "At present, statistics covering company car and van drivers from our Licence Link licence checking software indicates that around one in five have points on their licence. This could rise quite quickly with on-the-spot fines and create something of a risk management headache for fleet managers.
"The question is whether such a policy would change company car and van driver behaviour? Would it make them less likely to tailgate or undertake? It is quite a difficult point to answer."
CFC's Licence Link licence checking software is used by fleets to carry out online checking of the licence status and number of points of thousands of company car and van drivers.