Shadow director disqualified indefinitely…

HGVs were operated in a “shocking condition” despite previous ban.

The Traffic Commissioner for the West Midlands, Nick Jones, has disqualified the “shadow director” of a Wolverhampton business who deceived enforcement officers because he had already been banned by the Environment Agency.

The industry regulator ruled that Shane Fletcher was the controlling mind of Fletcher Metals Ltd, which operates from Chillington Industrial Estate.

In a written decision following a public inquiry last month, Jones remarked: “It was [also] clear that those employed by the entity holding the operator’s licence took orders from Shane Fletcher who had been banned by the Environment Agency. All correspondence was answered by Shane Fletcher, despite his using someone else’s name.”

Fletcher admitted to setting himself out as another person when dealing with investigators from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA).

The Traffic Commissioner also heard that documents relating to vehicle inspections were falsified, drivers had committed offences and a vehicle had been operated with an insecure load, in what was a described as a “shocking condition”.

Reaching his decision to revoke the operating licence held by Fletcher’s Metals Ltd with immediate effect and disqualify Shane Fletcher from running vehicles indefinitely, Jones said:

“An issue of significance is that the records were not merely false, the vehicle was operated ‘in a shocking condition’ and it is clear that there was no control over the drivers or records. He also ensured a significant competitive advantage as a result of failures to comply to with the law and failures to maintain vehicles safely.”