According to the lorry lawyer, it is estimated that metal theft is costing the economy a staggering 750 million pounds per year and a shocking statistic reveals that in 2012, metal theft claimed a total of 12 lives. Although fleet and truck tracking and adequate care of the vehicles can help to significantly reduce the likelihood of scrap metal theft, there is no telling when it will end. 

The lorry lawyer reports, “In an attempt to regulate the industry, the Government announced that from the 1st of October 2013 every scrap metal dealer in England and Wales is required to apply to their local authority for a licence to operate.” The enforcement of this new-found regulation began in December last year in order to allow the estimated £5b industry enough time to adjust to the change and apply for a licence. However, as you may have guessed, the industry of scrap metal dealers is not the only one to be affected by this regulation. Now, in certain circumstances, fleet companies who operate HGVs that may carry a load of scrap metal must apply for a licence to operate. Further to this, salvaged vehicles, in some cases, are also affected by this change in regulation. 

The BMRI (British Metals Recycling Industry), a representative body of the industry was happy to welcome the shift in regulation and stated, “The implementation of the new Scrap Metal Act is a watershed moment for the industry; it’s an opportunity to rid the industry of the ‘Steptoe & Son’ stereotype.” The lorry lawyer sums up the ins and outs of the act by saying, “the new act states that scrap metal dealers and motor salvage companies cannot operate without a licence. To do so could result in a criminal conviction and a fine of up to £5,000. Beyond these repercussions, the business would be affected by adverse publicity that the public conviction may draw, potentially damaging business relationships and negatively impacting brand value.” 

As mentioned before, all applications for a scrap metal licence must be made straight to your local authority. In order to obtain a licence, a fee must also be paid however; this fee will be set by your local authority. These licences are said to last for up to 3 years “from the date of grant” and it remains non-transferable. On a final note, it must be noted that the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 allows all applicants to appeal decisions made on behalf of their local authority, meaning that if your business is refused a licence for whatever reason, the decision of your local authority may prove not to be fatal to your company. If you’d like to learn more about the act and how it works, please follow the link provided at the start of this article. Alternatively, if you’d like to know a little more about truck tracking for your vehicles or have any questions regarding our systems, please do not hesitate to get in touch today. We would be happy to take your call.