Bo’ness coach operator disqualified from industry

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The owner of A & A Executive Coach Hire has been disqualified from holding or obtaining a licence to run PSVs for three years, following a Public Inquiry (PI) before the Traffic Commissioner for Scotland.

Miss Joan Aitken made the ruling after finding Ann Mason was no longer in control of the 10-vehicle O-licence.

The business, which ran eight registered school services, was called to the hearing in Edinburgh following an investigation by VOSA.

The TC heard Mrs Mason’s husband, Allan Mason, had taken over the firm from his wife yet continued to run under her O-licence. Licences are not transferable – Mr Mason should have applied in his own name to operate those vehicles.

In addition, a VOSA Examiner reported to Miss Aitken that a licence disc issued under the Ann Mason licence was photocopied and provided to another operator, Ian Orr. Mr Orr did not hold his own licence and was therefore operating illegally. The copying of licence discs is also an offence.

After hearing all the evidence, the TC concluded Mr Mason had made a copy of an O-disc from his wife’s licence and provided it to Ian Orr.

She said: “Both men knew this was Mr Orr operating on his own account and that cannot be done without an O-licence. By lending the licence Mr Mason allowed Mr Orr to get on and operate rather than working for someone else.”

Mr Orr subsequently applied for a licence with his wife, to run vehicles from Bo’ness.

Miss Aitken ruled the application could not grant authority to run because he was not a fit person to run PSVs. Mr and Mrs Orr had attempted to withdraw their application before the PI.

On Ann Mason’s licence, the Traffic Commissioner made an order to revoke the authority immediately and ruled that she would be disqualified from the running public service vehicles for three years.

She concluded: “I cannot trust Mrs Mason with an O-licence. I consider a period of three years would reflect the seriousness with which I regard her in attention to the licence and her failure to challenge her husband’s activities and to hold the reins herself.”