Institute of Transport Administration

Educating Transport Management since 1944


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Furloughing (standing down) a Transport Manager

9 Apr 2020

A Transport Manager is required to effectively and continuously manage the transport activities of an undertaking. The conditions on the operator’s licence require the operator to notify the traffic commissioner of matters which might impact for instance on the ability to show professional competence.


There may be several scenarios which lead to an agreement to furlough a Transport Manager. The traffic commissioners will consider each case on its own merit, but the following provides the starting points for the traffic commissioners in their deliberations:

  • If an operator has temporarily laid up the whole fleet of licensed vehicles, the Transport Manager will not be required to exercise continuous and effective management of an undertaking which is not in operation. It is likely that the traffic commissioner would consider that there continues to be a genuine link between the operator and Transport Manager, who must be re-engaged before operations recommence. The traffic commissioner would not normally expect to be advised of that change.
  • If an operator reduces their overall operation and some Transport Managers are furloughed (as may occur with some larger operations who have several Transport Managers) the operator and/or the Transport Manager(s) must advise the Office of the Traffic Commissioner by email providing details of the arrangements. The Traffic Commissioner may require additional information.
  • If an operator continues to operate and attempts to furlough the only Transport Manager, the Office of the Traffic Commissioner must be advised immediately. There is a mandatory and continuing requirement for professional competence on all standard licences. In order to continue operating that standard operator
  • must make an application for a Period of Grace or seek a temporary exemption, in order to continue operating without a Transport Manager. The Contingency Statutory Document already refers to the approach, which might be taken by the Traffic Commissioner.