Failure to stop leads to driving licence suspension

A DVSA enforcement officer driving a car on the motorway

DVSA works with the Traffic Commissioners for Great Britain to protect you from unsafe vehicles and drivers. Every day, DVSA officers and examiners carry out checks on vehicles and drivers at the roadside to do this.

Our stopping officers are authorised to identify and direct vehicles to check sites for further investigation. Their work makes a vital contribution to our enforcement activities.

In most cases, drivers follow the instructions given by DVSA stopping vehicles. However, some choose to ignore them.

Failing to stop

Failing to stop when instructed to do so by a DVSA officer is an offence.

DVSA can prosecute drivers, and also send a report to the independent traffic commissioners, who have the power to take action against a driver’s professional licence.

Recently, DVSA did just that after a driver failed to stop. DVSA officers were worried about his vehicle’s load being insecure – it was carrying 4 skips stacked on top of each other.

We made 2 attempts to stop the vehicle but the driver didn’t follow our instructions and continued on his journey.

Our investigations after the incident revealed the driver wasn’t using a tachograph card for the journey. He said it was faulty but didn’t take a print out from the tachograph to make a manual entry on the back before starting to drive.

That an examiner subsequently discovered this offence only adds further justification to DVSA’s decision to stop his vehicle.

Driver conduct hearing

At the driver conduct hearing before the Traffic Commissioner Nick Denton, the driver claimed that it wasn’t safe to follow the stopping vehicle. But Nick didn’t accept this and said footage from cameras on board the stopping vehicle showed he had sufficient time and opportunity to stop.

The Traffic Commissioner suspended the driver from professional driving for 8 weeks.

As this case shows, DVSA and the traffic commissioners will not tolerate any attempts to avoid enquiries or hide non-compliance.

For more information on driver’s conduct, you can read the Senior Traffic Commissioner’s Statutory Document on vocational driver conduct.


  1. Tim Phillips

    The guy was punished for failing to stop and not having a tacho. Every single person replying to this knows that both of these are offences whether or not the skips were safely loaded. There are some very silly comments here about DVSA qualifications, jobsworths and so on. How else do you think the law is enforced?

    Such comments only reinforce the need for proper driver education, CPC etc. and if you disagree, you have the wrong attitude to professional driving (and by the way will continually find yourselves at the wrong end of properly carried out enforcement of the laws that apply to everybody).

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  2. Sandy Dobie

    Easy to say that the driver will experience hardship for loosing their vocational licence, but it is like everything else in life, it is fine and dandy until something goes wrong. What if a skip had fell off onto another vehicle and seriously injured the persons in the vehicle or even worse caused death? What would you pick then? An 8 week driving suspension or a possible custodial sentence? I also work in the industry and find that there can be a complete disregard to the law and quite often it is people just being too lazy to use proper load restraining equipment! Again, life is fine until something happens and it doesn't always happen to someone else.

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  3. MR A D BALL

    Mr Remzi
    I think your comments are totally out of place if you drive on any motorway or dual carriageway you will see buckets, wheelbarrows, plastic piping, cones, barriers and much more laying on the road or on the side of the road these haven't fell off scaffolding wagons they've fell of builders, scrap, gardeners and tarmac wagons & vans these people don't even have any rope of strapping on boards to secure there loads. The majority of competent scaffold companies will have net covering on their wagons and strapping to ensure nothing falls off.

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  4. Mark Hyde

    Well these DVLA inspectors seem well qualified. I'm all for it. That many lorries bursting into flames on motorways today suggest they are not being looked after.

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  5. mel woodbridge


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  6. Phil hughes

    If your legal , no problem , if your not serves you right !!!!

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  7. Chris Good

    I strongly disagree with Mr Glenn. Any driver who does not stop for an enforcement officer has no right to a licence.
    I am pleased that DVSA is taking these cowboys off the road.

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  8. Jon darke

    I would like to see you guys pulling over coaches taxis and cars been pulled in my trucks many a time in 40 years on the road never seen above must be in the wrong industry

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  9. Mr T. Woods

    Failure to stop only go's to prove one of two things or both, that 1 you are illegally in use of a vehicle on the road or 2 that your vehicle is illegally on the road and should carry a minimum sentence of a 2 year ban for the driver and a 4 year o licence ban for the operator.

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  10. John Smith

    We are easy targets just so we can pay their wages plus they have no training just jobs worths who want to be police officers

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  11. Mr K. Broome

    what qualifications has Nick got ie has he ever driven a loaded hgv? the unfortunate driver has obviously got the DRIVER CPC. making him a professional driver. Also you haven't said if it was an unsecure load. as for the punishment I would say that is nothing but a disgrace to put a working man into financial hardship (one pay slip away from debt for a vast amount of working class). What qualifications do need to have, to be a DVSA officer????

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    • John (DVSA)

      Hi Mr Broome

      The vehicle was carrying 4 skips stacked on top of each other. Our officers wanted to stop the vehicle because they were worried about the load being insecure. As the post explains, our investigations after the incident found that the driver wasn’t using a tachograph card for the journey.

      When a serious offence, such as failing to stop is committed, the driver should be fully aware of the consequences. The statutory guidance on vocational driver conduct sets out the action the Traffic Commissioners can take in regards to driving licence suspension.

      Our job is to protect the public from unsafe vehicles and drivers. Drivers and operators who break the law and put other road users at risk should expect to face the consequences.

      DVSA officers need a vocational related qualification issued by a recognised awarding body. For example, the City & Guilds Level 5 IVQ Advanced Technician Diploma in Motor Vehicle Engineering, IMIAL Level 3 Diploma in Heavy Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Competence, IMIAL Level 4 Diploma in Vehicle Maintenance & Repair Competence, or the EDEXCEL Level 3 BTEC National Diploma in Vehicle Repair and Technology.

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      • Mr Meehan

        The sad events in Glasgow last christmas are testament to the reasons why vehicles and drivers MUST be safe, the damage large vehicles can do even at lower speeds can be catastrophic!

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  12. Stephen Hicks DVSA-ADI

    White Sprinter / Transit Commercial Vans exceeding The permitted Speed Limits they're the ones that need flagging up and pulling in.

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  13. Mitch Remzi

    The worst offenders are scaffolders who do not even have to do the driver cpc! In the last 10 years I have been hit by 2 scaffolders and had a near miss at speed on the motorway with one.

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  14. Stephen Dean

    It's easier to follow the rules, so best advice is, follow the rules.

    Mr S Dean.

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  15. Steve mansell

    I would think anyone failing to stop knows they are breaking the rules or law otherwise you would stop.

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  16. Mr P. Glenn

    "Failure to stop leads to driving licence suspension"

    All very well and good, but you are left with the perennial problem of foreign operators, who are not controlled by the Senior Traffic commissioner. These lorries are the ones that need close scrutiny.

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    • robert walker

      why do bad drivers have to blame someone else if there in the uk they are checked at port of entry eg ferry ports

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