The DVSA has outlined a fundamental shift in its approach, which will see it move from a culture of enforcement towards a focus on compliance.

Speaking at the Microlise conference in Coventry last week, DVSA’s head of enforcement transformation Caroline

Hicks conceeded that the agency’s current procedures, including around 10,000 roadside checks a month, were expensive for both hauliers and the DVSA, intrusive, and not an effective method of reaching the whole industry.

A single roadside check, with a supermarket haulier for example, said Hicks, costs up to £4,000, due to the time-sensitive nature of its operation.

She told delegates the DVSA wants to use industry technology such as telematics to regulate vehicles and their drivers remotely and subsequently file them onto a compliance scale, ranging from “exemplar operators” to “seriously/serially non-compliant”.

This method, said Hicks, would allow the DVSA to focus its resources on those falling under the latter category, with what it labelled as a Continual Focused Targeting Regime.

At the other end of the scale, “exemplar operators” would be rewarded under a new earned recognition scheme, with those falling in between seeing a mixture of remote enforcement, roadside checks and visits, dependant on their compliance rating.

At the end of the speech, 84% of the more than 1,000 delegates at the conference said they would be happy to grant the DVSA unlimited access to their records for this purpose. At the start of the presentation this stood at just 48%.