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Scottish border bother

By: Dave Robbins
06 June 2014

Will Scottish independence create an international border?Five years ago there were an estimated 24 million vehicle crossings heading both north and south over the Scottish border. That was, of course, before the last general election and the subsequent agreement between the Westminster and Edinburgh Parliaments for a vote on Scottish independence.

Come September, if Scottish voters choose to go their own way, it could cause a wee bit of bother for hire and reward hauliers. Scottish independence will create an international border between England and Scotland. That means that hire and reward operators carrying goods between the two countries will need a standard international ‘O-licence’. If you haven’t got one, you’re committing an offence and could be fined. This applies regardless of whether your business is north or south of the border. All of which could see the Office of the Traffic Commissioner facing a tidal wave of applications for international ‘O-licences’ – and a potential log jam in getting them approved.

There’s further potential trouble regarding the status of transport managers. At one time there were separate international and national Certificate of Professional Competency (CPC) exams. That means there must be plenty of operators whose transport manager only holds a national CPC. A holder of a standard international licence must employ a transport manager with an international CPC qualification. So applying for an international licence might mean that your transport manager has to upgrade his CPC too.

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