The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has reassured fleet operators it’s maintaining licence checking services in light of the Coronavirus crisis, for the time being.

The process for updating new endorsements and points on a licence also remains unaffected, says the DVLA.

A spokesperson at the DVLA said: “Our digital enquiry services are currently running as normal, with the relevant support in place. We are continuing to process any manual or paper enquiries, but there may be some delays.

“We receive any new endorsements via electronic notification from the courts, which in turn update the driver records.”

Licence Bureau, supplier of driver licence validation services, have also reassured clients that it’s ‘Business as usual’ and says it is continuing to deliver online services.

Steve Pinchen, sales director at Licence Bureau, said: “Our priority is the safety of all our staff and clients. We have been closely monitoring the situation as well as following the advice and guidelines issued by the government and other the relevant organisations.

“With the above aspects satisfied, we’re proud to say it is pretty much ‘Business as usual’ at Licence Bureau. We have not seen any significant change in activity to date (27 March) apart from one or two clients, mainly in coach travel and tourism, asking to suspend activity for the short-term.

“We have a fully operational and tested business continuity plan. Within this plan, we have a designed operational approach for dealing with instances such as viral outbreaks and enforced remote home working.  

“We can continue to deliver vital online services to clients through our compliance managed services (CMS) platform including the provision of audits, licence checking, grey fleet, risk assessments, e-learning and permit to drive services. These operations continue to be safely and securely delivered remotely, with no loss of client service.”

Pinchen believes that health and safety must remain an organisation’s priority during the coronavirus pandemic and warns that taking unnecessary risks by short-cutting compliance procedures could lead to far greater implications.

Pinchen said: “It is critical to abide by and maintain your duty of care obligations during this period of uncertainty, especially relevant to those organisations taking on extra drivers to accommodate the rising demand in home delivery services.

“Despite the economic challenges we all face, health and safety must remain an organisation’s top priority. Taking unnecessary risks by short-cutting the necessary compliance procedures could lead to far greater implications – consider an unqualified driver causing a road traffic accident and requiring NHS support right now. It truly doesn’t bear thinking about.”