From air to road and truck to taxi, by and large, the South African transport industry covers an extensive array of systems and segments, and represents a driving force within the economy whose sole purpose is geared towards ensuring that goods as well as people are conveyed from point A to point B in the safest and most cost effective ways possible. From commercial truck and courier companies to bus and metered taxi companies including online transport concerns such as Uber, it is incumbent upon every business engaged in employing drivers to ensure that prospective as well as drivers who are already employed, meet the required licensing, performance and operational standards. As a starting point, carrying out extensive employee screening measures can reduce the risk of incurring liabilities when the wheels fall off in the face of fraudulent activities.
Driver screening requires a number of checks to keep the wheels in motion; including, but not necessarily limited to, an identity check, criminal record check, Matric or senior certificate verification and tertiary education verification. It is also necessary to ensure that the driver is in possession of a valid South African Driver’s License or International Driver’s License, and holds a Professional Driver’s Permit (PDP), as required. A valid vehicle registration certificate is also needed where any vehicle may be involved. Having fulfilled the necessary hygiene factor requirements, the importance of ongoing checks such as alcohol and drug testing should also form part of the process. Fraudcheck is committed to providing relevant information that mitigates the risk of fraud, resulting in greater peace of mind and a smooth road ahead.
According to a statement released by Statistics South Africa on 5 October 2015, road freight leads employment creation in the transport industry. As at the end of June 2013, freight transport by road had the largest number of employees at 31%, followed by railway transport at 19% and ‘activities of other transport agencies’ at 10%.
An article published in The Star on 19 February 2015 revealed that South Africa currently has 433 073 unlicensed truckers on its roads. This shocking revelation was disclosed by the Road Traffic Management Corporation which stunned Gauteng MEC for roads and transport, Ismail Vadi, who subsequently joined senior RTMC officials in urging public transport owners to comply with the law or face punishment for defaulting. RTMC chief executive Makhosini Msibi was also reported to have said that the corporation had found that almost half a million professional drivers were currently operating with expired Professional Drivers’ Permits and that operators were to be held responsible. Fraudcheck helps to expose potential threats as a result of non-compliance with the law, keeping clients informed and putting the brakes on non-compliance.
Drivers are also required to produce a medical fitness certificate and maintain a clean criminal record in order to obtain or renew a Professional Driver’s Permit. However, an RTMC spokesman also confirmed that they would be investigating the possibility that certain drivers had obtained bogus medical certificates and that Swazi national Sanele Goodness May, who was charged with the killing of 24 people in Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal, in September 2013, did not have a PDP.
Conducting checks on drivers is an integral part of the Fraudcheck service, helping to pave the way towards preventing fraud in the transport industry.