Police uncover shocking state of lorries
By Roddy AshworthPOLICE were left shocked after a road safety operation uncovered a firm was employing a haulier who had not passed a lorry driving test.
By Roddy Ashworth
POLICE were left shocked after a road safety operation uncovered a firm was employing a haulier who had not passed a lorry driving test.
Traffic officers said they were stunned by the “total lack of respect” some lorry drivers displayed for other people's lives during the three-week operation.
Bocking traffic police stopped 307 lorries on major roads in and around Braintree and checked them for mechanical faults. They also examined the truckers' records for any signs of excessive driving hours.
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Pc Graham Lumley, who co-ordinated the operation, said: “We were shocked to discover so many lorries that were in a dangerous mechanical condition.
“Furthermore, we were disappointed to see so many drivers dangerously tired, despite the many road safety campaigns around highlighting this problem.
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“On some occasions, we were dealing with both poorly-maintained vehicles being driven by tired people.
“And on one stop, we found a man who has yet to pass a test allowing him to drive such vehicles, yet was employed by a firm to drive every day.”
Police prohibited 35 drivers from travelling any further, while almost 60 vehicles were prevented from being driven because they were mechanically unfit for the road.
Inspector Mark Harman, of Bocking traffic police, said: “The hard work is all worthwhile when we find the really dangerous ones.
“We stopped one driver whose lorry was dangerously defective. He actually tried to hide his driving records, which showed that he had driven for 12 hours the day before without any significant break. It is these drivers who put other road users lives at risk.”