The enforcement of the standards and requirements set down in an operator’s licence and under road transport law, which includes the enforcement of drivers’ hours is the responsibility of the RSA and Garda Siochana. The RSA and Garda Siochana have the power to stop vehicles and carry roadside checks on commercial vehicles and they have a number of powers afforded to them regarding the action that they can take if any issues are identified.
The RSA and Garda Siochana have a number of available options at the roadside when they identify matters of non-compliance with drivers’ hours which include:
- issuing prohibition notices
- issuing fixed penalty notices/graduated fixed penalties
- the immobilisation of the vehicle
- conducting an interview under caution
- the issuing of a summons/prosecution (not dealt with at the roadside)
- notification to the RSA of issues identified.
Only the very serious infringements and most serious infringements will be dealt with in the Circuit Court, as in recent years. For minor infringements, the authorities should review the existence of the professional access requirements within 12 to 15 months.