Further to queries made to the licensing office regarding the fitting of screens in licensed vehicles please could you inform your members of the following.
I can now confirm that approval has been received to permit the installation of screens in licensed vehicles.
Please note should you decide to install a screen it is your responsibility to comply with the requirements to ensure the safety of both drivers and passengers alike.
Guidance and Document Requirements for the Installation of Protective Screens in Licensed Private Hire Vehicles.
· Any fittings and equipment must comply with the Road Vehicle (Construction and Use) Regulations.
· Any screen must be tested to the relevant EU standard for an original equipment type approval test covering interior fittings
· The screen must be approved by MIRA or other comparable independent product engineering, testing, consultancy and certification organisation.
· Screens must be professionally and securely fitted in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
· Certification from the vehicle’s manufacturer should be sought to confirm that the screen does not compromise the integrity of the vehicle structure.
· The Screen should not interfere with or compromise the operating or safety features in the vehicle (including but not limited to airbags, handbrake, gearstick) or the vehicle type approval
· The Screen shall not be made of materials that will increase the fire risk
· The screen will be made of materials that are shatterproof and not be liable to cause injury following impact.
· The Screen shall be transparent enough so as not to interfere with the safe use of the vehicle, and to enable the driver and passengers to see each other;
· The Screen shall remain clear of scratches, clouding or stickers which would impede the drivers or passengers’ visibility including the rear view mirror.
· The Screen shall be adequately and safely secured and not interfere with the safe access and egress of the driver or passengers or become easily detached during normal use.
· The Screen shall be adequately cleaned and disinfected between bookings.
· The Screen shall be cleaned and disinfected at the start and end of the working shift.
· The Screen should not impede driver or passenger access or egress to the vehicle.
· Inform insurers about the intention to fit such a device and ensure their insurance will not be invalidated as a result. Written confirmation will be obtained from the insurers and sent to the Licensing Service before installation.
· Fit/install screens at your own responsibility and in accordance with the manufacturers specifications and recommendations. Documentation relating to the type of screen to be fitted, the material the screen is made from, should be forwarded to the licensing service before installation.
· Provide confirmation that the screen has been crash tested indicating safety properties of the screen will be provided to the Licensing service after the screen has been installed.
· Certification issued by the installer must be provided to the Licensing Service immediately after installation.
· Understand that this is a temporary measure and the Council reserve the right to require removal of the screen with reasonable notice
· Be aware depending on the type fitted (full front/back partition or driver only) the front passenger seat in the vehicle may be unusable in which case the maximum number of passengers the vehicle is licensed to carry will be affected.
· Ensure that frequent cleaning and disinfecting of specific areas takes place throughout each shift, i.e. door handles, seat belts and buckles and other obvious hard surfaces touched by a passenger, including areas that may have been infected following a passenger coughing or sneezing.
If an authorised officer or vehicle examiner has any concerns about the use of a partition screen in a licensed vehicle, they will speak to the proprietor and may require the removal of the device, explaining their reasons for doing so in writing.
Failure to meet the requirements above will result in the vehicle proprietor being asked to remove the screen.
Finally, the Council wishes to reiterate its position that it can neither require nor prevent Private Hire drivers from working during this crisis. It simply recognises that some licence holders will work, and wishes to provide as much guidance as possible in these circumstances.
We would remind those who are working that they have a responsibility to minimise the potential for the spread of the virus by taking all possible precautions to keep themselves and the vehicles as safe and sanitised as is practically possible.
Should you have any questions regarding these requirements please contact email@example.com and finally I would like to thank you for your patience in this matter.