In this case study, employment lawyer Kevin Murphy looks at a client case where a HGV driver was caught carrying out an extremely bad overtake.
Overview and Background
The client is a haulage company operating HGVs across Stoke-on-Trent, Crewe and the North West. The client received a complaint from a member of the public in relation to one of their branded vehicles being driven in a dangerous manner.
The client reviewed in-cab CCTV footage and saw that one of their drivers overtook a tanker on an uphill stretch of road. The driver ignored the towing in arrows on the road and continued to overtake. The driver proceeded to cross solid white lines to complete his overtake at the top of the hill and narrowly avoided a collision with an oncoming vehicle.
Client concerns and aims
The client utilised their access to our HR lawyers and asked for assistance with their next steps. They considered this a serious matter and became concerned about the driver performance across the team.
What we did
We advised the client that they could discipline the driver. Due to the extremely poor standards, and the fact that the driver broke the highway code as well as the damage to the reputation of the business, we advised that a gross misconduct dismissal could be possible.
We assisted with the investigation ensuring that it would meet the standard of reasonableness expected by the Tribunals. We drafted the disciplinary invitation letter ensuring that all obligations were met and that the allegations were clear and precise. We provided the Disciplinary Chair with a question guide to assist the progress of the meeting.
After the meeting, the Disciplinary Chair sent us the minutes for review with their desired outcome.
Outcome and benefits
The Disciplinary Chair felt that a gross misconduct dismissal was appropriate in this situation.
Upon review of the minutes the diver admitted their poor conduct and that they had damaged the reputation of the business. We, therefore, agreed with the Disciplinary Chair and drafted the outcome letter in line with their beliefs.
The client found that by taking this one matter seriously and dealing with the employee in a firm, but fair manner, the rest of the drivers improved their driving standards.
HR help and advice for your logistics business
If you are in the logistics industry or have drivers on the road representing your business and want to ensure you have the right HR support please get in touch with the team who can carry out a free HR review and advice you on your HR headaches.