Abus wins PI appeal over drivers
Bristol bus independent Abus has had the decision of the Traffic Commissioner overturned, an appeal deciding the operator is entitled to employ drivers through another company.
Traffic Commissioner Kevin Rooney (B&CB 16 November 2018) had said the close relationship between Abus and nearby Mundens, from whom Abus hired drivers, was unusual and unlawful, and suspended the Abus O-licence from 31 January this year, though he agreed this would not take place if the decision was appealed.
At the appeal tribunal, Judge Marion Caldwell QC said that case law established that contracting employees was legal in that Abus had control of the drivers. Barrister Nicholas Cotter, from B&CB’s legal columnists, Stone King, established that previous cases had demonstrated that this arrangement is allowable under Section 81 (1) (b) (ii) of the Passenger Vehicle Act 1981.
Abus Ltd Director, Alan Peters, told B&CB he is relieved the appeal was successful: “The greater injustice, in my view, is that the considerable cost of the appeal is not recoverable. Fortunately I had legal insurance.”
- A full explanation of the appeal will be carried in B&CB’s Legal Advice pages in next week’s issue