The Government has completed its review of the function and role of the Traffic Commissioners. The review ran for August to September 2021, with the full consultation outcome published on 17 May this year, and applies to England, Scotland and Wales.
The review sought views on whether the functions carried out by traffic commissioners are required; how effectively and efficiently carry out their role and duties; whether the existing staffing and administration arrangements of Office of the Traffic Commissioner are effective or whether alternative arrangements are required, and; whether additional functions and responsibilities should be added to the Office of the Traffic Commissioner
The consultation concluded that Traffic Commissioners undertake an important function on behalf of the Department for Transport, contributing directly to improving transport for the user by promoting the safe operation of heavy vehicles and buses on the roads and growing the economy by supporting transport operators to keep goods and passengers moving. It was found that the Traffic Commissioner function generally operates effectively and can meet the standards of service for the transport industry, the Traffic Commissioners enjoy support from stakeholders for the scope of their activities and independence, and that all major stakeholders agreed on the necessity of fee reform.
The main recommendations which arose from the consultation were that substantial improvement to the Traffic Commissioner function would require legislative change, and that opportunities exist to improve efficiency by better allocating responsibilities and providing additional governance through improving collaborative working between DfT, and the Traffic Commissioners.