Uber loses right to classify UK drivers as self-employed

Landmark employment tribunal ruling states firm must also pay drivers national living wage and holiday pay with huge implications for gig economy

Uber drivers are not self-employed and should be paid the “national living wage”, a UK employment court has ruled in a landmark case which could affect tens of thousands of workers in the gig economy.

The ride-hailing app could now be open to claims from all of its 40,000 drivers in the UK, who are currently not entitled to holiday pay, pensions or other workers’ rights. Uber immediately said it would appeal against the ruling.

Employment experts said other firms with large self-employed workforces could now face scrutiny of their working practices and the UK’s biggest union, Unite, announced it was setting up a new unit to pursue cases of bogus self-employment.

Research by Citizens Advice has suggested that as many as 460,000 people could be falsely classified as self-employed, costing up to £314m a year in lost tax and employer national insurance contributions. Four courier firms are already facing legal action from cyclists who want similar recognition as staff employees and the rights that go with that status, while delivery firm Hermes is under investigation by HM Revenue & Customs.

The Uber ruling could force a rethink of the gig economy business model, where companies use apps and the internet to match customers with workers. The firms do not employ the workers, but take commission from their earnings, and many have become huge global enterprises. Uber now operates around the world, with the company valued at more than £50bn.

The decision of the employment tribunal comes amid mounting concern within government about the growing trend towards self-employed workforces. The government has recently announced a six-month review of modern working practices and HMRC is setting up a new unit, the employment status and intermediaries team, to investigate firms.

MPs launched an inquiry last week into pay and working conditions in the UK which will look at the status and rights of agency and casual workers and the self-employed for the purposes of tax, benefits and employment law, and how to protect them.

Friday’s ruling by a London employment tribunal involves a case taken by two drivers, James Farrar and Yaseen Aslam, on behalf of a group 19 Uber workers who argued that they were employed by the San Francisco-based firm, rather than working for themselves.

At a hearing in July, Farrar told how he was put under “tremendous pressure” to work long hours and accept jobs and said that there were “repercussions” from the company if he cancelled a pickup. He said some months he earned as little as £5 an hour – far below the £7.20 that employers are obliged to pay workers aged over 25.

Uber argued that it was a technology firm not a transport business and that its drivers were independent self-employed contractors who could choose where and when they worked.

The judges were scathing about Uber’s arguments, however, accusing the firm of “resorting in its documentation to fictions, twisted language and even brand new terminology” and even quoting Hamlet to suggest that the group’s UK boss was protesting too much about its position.

“The notion that Uber in London is a mosaic of 30,000 small businesses linked by a common ‘platform’ is to our minds faintly ridiculous,” the judges said. “Drivers do not and cannot negotiate with passengers … They are offered and accept trips strictly on Uber’s terms.”

Nigel Mackay from the employment team at law firm Leigh Day, which represented the drivers, said: “We are pleased that the employment tribunal has agreed with our arguments that drivers are entitled to the most basic workers’ rights, including to be paid the [national living wage] and to receive paid holiday, which were previously denied to them.

“This is a ground-breaking decision. It will impact not just on the thousands of Uber drivers working in this country, but on all workers in the so-called gig economy whose employers wrongly classify them as self-employed and deny them the rights to which they are entitled.”

The GMB union, which took up the case for the drivers, said that it was a “monumental victory” which would have an impact on thousands of workers in other industries “where bogus self-employment is rife”.

Maria Ludkin, GMB’s legal director, said: “Uber drivers and thousands of others caught in the bogus self-employment trap will now enjoy the same rights as employees. This outcome will be good for passengers, too. Properly rewarded drivers are the same side of the coin as drivers who are properly licensed and driving well-maintained and insured vehicles.”

Farrar said he was thrilled with the “emphatic” ruling. He said his industry had seen the deterioration in workers’ rights since Uber entered the market. “We’ve brought that to a halt,” he said.

Employment experts said that other firms with large self-employed workforces could now face similar action. “This judgment is likely to have massive implications, as we see an increasing number of start-up businesses effectively adopting Uber’s model,” said Tim Goodwin of law firm Winckworth Sherwood. “The effect of this judgment is that those kinds of business may owe a lot more to their workers, such as paid holiday and minimum wage, than they had bargained for.”
The ruling should be regarded as “ a salutary lesson by businesses who try to arbitrarily ‘classify’ workers as contractors to avoid affording them their full rights as workers,” Goodwin said.

The GMB’s Ludkin said employers should be “on notice” that it was reviewing similar contracts. “This is old-fashioned exploitation under new-fangled jargon, but the law will force you to pay GMB members what they are rightfully due,” she said.

There were calls for more clarity over employment status, with Citizens Advice pointing out that many people were locked out of employment tribunals by fees of up to £1,200.

“The fact it takes an employment tribunal to decide whether these drivers are self-employed shows that proving employment status is an extremely complicated and costly process,” said its chief executive, Gillian Guy. “For many people struggling at the sharp end of insecure work, such as in false self-employment, taking such a case is simply not an option.”

The ruling is not the end of the process for Uber. The firm will take the case to the employment appeal tribunal, and following its decision there could be further hearings in the court of appeal and then the supreme court. Any payments due to drivers will not be calculated until that process is over.

Other drivers with the firm will not automatically receive payouts but, if the firm accepts the ruling, it will have to change its contracts to avoid more cases being taken by drivers. Lawyers say that its terms and conditions are similar for all of its UK employees.

Jo Bertram, the regional general manager of Uber in the UK, said many of the firm’s drivers did not want to be classified as workers: “Tens of thousands of people in London drive with Uber precisely because they want to be self-employed and their own boss.

“The overwhelming majority of drivers who use the Uber app want to keep the freedom and flexibility of being able to drive when and where they want.”

Uber in numbers

40,000 The number of Uber drivers in the UK

£5 The hourly wage received in some months by one of the drivers who took the case.

$62.5bn Uber’s valuation based on its last round of funding.

Seven The years that Uber has been in operation.

460,000 The number of people who could be falsely classified as self-employed in the UK

£314m The yearly estimated cost in lost tax and employer national insurance contributions from falsely classified employees, according to Citizens Advice

source: https://www.theguardian.com/

Uber driver races the rising tide, and the tide wins

For some reason, people keep thinking they can outsmart Mother Nature, and Mother Nature always wins.

Take this uber driver, who either thought the tide would not rise for him or that his car would turn into a raft, Transformers-style.

Unfortunately, it didn’t end well – as this drone footage shows.

The driver was caught out at Holy Island, off the north east coast, while travelling back from Lindisfarne.

One of his passengers, a Buddhist monk, waves to the drone while the car is stopped on the only part of the bridge that wasn’t submerged.

Mark Bradshaw, from Seaton Burn, Tyne and Wear, posted the video on his YouTube channel.

He said: ‘I went out to Holy Island with a friend to take footage of the castle.

‘We saw the vehicle coming over from the island side. It was very brave of him and I decided to film him.

‘I was in the military for 24 years and I’ve seen lots of things but nothing as ridiculous as that.

‘One of the passengers got out and walked up and down, pondering what their next move was.

‘I guess they just had to wait for nature to take its course before they could leave.’

Eventually, the stranded driver and passengers were rescued, with footage showing a lifeboat pulling up to help them to safety.

Holy Island causeway has safe crossing times due to the high tide that covers the road – but it appears this driver ignored the advice.

Read more: http://metro.co.uk/

Commons Questions – Rossendale

Taxis: Rossendale

Department for Transport written question – answered on 31st October 2016.

Paul Blomfield Shadow Minister (Exiting the European Union)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 12 October 2016 to Question 46806 on taxis: licensing, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the increase in licence applications from Rossendale Borough Council between 2013 and 2015.

Andrew Jones Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The legislation that provides for licensing of taxi and private hire vehicle services is enabling in its nature, giving local licensing authorities the discretion to set standards that they deem to be appropriate for their area. Rossendale Council has already made changes to the Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle application process to address the rapid rise in the number of drivers they license. Wherever a driver has been licensed, the licensing authority that issue that licence must have confirmed that the driver is a “fit and proper” person.

To help licensing authorities set standards the Department for Transport issues Best Practice Guidance. In addition to this, the Government has also introduced an amendment to the Policing and Crime Bill that will make statutory all aspects of the guidance that are related to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults. Both parts of the guidance will be consulted on publicly once the Bill has received Royal Assent.

Derby man used forged documents to work as a taxi driver

Manveer Singh Khakh pleaded guilty at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court today to 23 offences relating driving a taxi without the correct licence.

The court heard Khakh had been given private hire work by an operator in Derby on the basis that he was licensed as a hackney carriage driver with Gedling Borough Council.

Derby City Council’s licensing team carried out an investigation which found that Khakh had not been licensed as a hackney carriage driver by Gedling Borough Council since December 17, 2014, and that he had been allocated work by providing forged documents to the operator.

The city council said it was pleased with the outcome of the case.

Councillor Baggy Shanker, who has responsibility for licensing at Derby City Council, said he was pleased with the outcome of the case. He said: “This is a welcome decision by the magistrates that highlights one of the loopholes created by hackney carriages licensed in other local authorities working in the city.

“This sends a clear message to drivers that, if they are found to be operating in the city without the correct authorisation, the council will not hesitate to take action against them. We intend to continue our pressure on other local authorities who license drivers operating in Derby to close these licensing loopholes.”

A spokesman for Derby City Council said following the case that all operator licence holders in the city were being reminded of the importance of stringently checking documents provided by drivers to ensure they were genuine prior to allocating work to them.

Khakh was charged under section 47 of the town and police clauses act 1847. He was fined £60 per offence, in total £1,380, but, due to his guilty plea, the fine was reduced to £920. Derby City Council was awarded £1,977.35 costs.

Read more at http://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/

Landmark ruling looms on basic workers’ rights for Uber drivers

A tribunal is going to decide whether Uber drivers are entitled to receive the minimum wage as well as sickness and holiday pay.

An employment tribunal in London will today make a landmark ruling that could set a precedent for the UK’s so-called gig economy.

Two Uber drivers have brought a case against the car hire service which strikes at the heart of the business model that helped the company grow to be worth billions of pounds worldwide in less than a decade.

The drivers claim that Uber is acting unlawfully by denying them basic workers’ rights such as the minimum wage along with sick and holiday pay.
Uber insists its 40,000 drivers are “partners” and self-employed, meaning they are not entitled to these benefits.

Sky News spoke to Henry, who has been working exclusively as an Uber driver for two years. He says he works 14-hour days in order to earn a weekly salary of about £300.

He explained: “Uber is a very big company and they are recruiting every single day so you can’t argue with them. That is what is worrying, you could lose your job at any time.”

Jason Moyer-Lee is the leader of the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain, and is calling for a change to employment law to ensure workers in the sector are treated fairly.

He said: “The so-called gig economy is a euphemism for exploitation.

“It’s basically a model that big profit-making companies have developed where they have realised, for the most part, they can get away with having lots of workers who work for them, often exclusively, and help them make their profits.

“But they don’t provide these people with the minimum wage, holiday and sick pay or pensions and everything that workers across the country have come to take for granted.”

But not everyone is unhappy with the kind of work that the likes of Uber, Deliveroo and TaskRabbit offer, and instead enjoy the flexibility.
Viktor is developing his own software company alongside being an Uber driver.

He said: “I think Uber is fantastic, I don’t work for anybody or serve anybody. In fact I use it to help me network and get extra money when I need it.”

The so-called gig or sharing economy has boomed in the UK.

Deliveroo is another company embroiled in the row over workers’ rights

According to official figures, the number of people registered as self-employed rose to 4.8 million in August this year – accounting for 15% of the UK population.

As for Uber, it has two million users in London alone and they make around one million trips a week.

For many people using the one-off, on-demand services for takeaways, odd jobs or taxi rides is a convenience but critics say it’s fuelling inequality, with big companies growing at the expense of others less fortunate.

The tribunal’s decision could have huge implications not just for Uber and its drivers but for all those invested in the UK’s gig economy.

If Uber loses, it may radically change how companies in the sector do business and how they treat those that work for them.

But if the case goes against the drivers, experts say it would validate this type of flexible working and encourage more on-demand services into the market.

source: http://news.sky.com/

Taxi drivers won’t be forced to take BTEC after all because courses ‘cost too much’

THE high cost of courses to improve the level of service from taxi drivers in Christchurch has led to councillors rejecting the idea.

At a meeting of the licensing committee on Monday, members discussed plans to ask drivers to complete BTEC and NVQ qualifications in a bid to raise the quality of service for passengers.

They also discussed whether to introduce a safeguarding module for drivers to complete.

However, members felt the fees involved in the BTEC and NVQ courses were too high.

The discussion came after Bournemouth council asked their drivers to complete BTEC and NVQ courses, which led to a concern that drivers were moving to Christchurch to work.

Officers warned that there could be strong opposition to the measure, especially with a lack of government funding.

Councillor Bernie Davis, portfolio holder for safe and healthy communities, said: “Members requested that officers investigate the feasibility of introducing BTEC and NVQ qualifications for hackney carriage and private hire drivers (taxi drivers).

“We were aware that other nearby local authorities required taxi drivers to complete such courses and that this may have resulted in a displacement of applications to Christchurch. It was also felt that such qualifications may improve the general level of service offered to the public.

“At the licensing committee meeting, members decided that the fees presented made it unreasonable to make the qualifications a requirement.

“However, we have requested further investigation into other providers to ensure best value.

“Members did agree to introduce a new safeguarding module, following high profile national case reviews relating to taxi drivers and the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults.”

The safeguarding module follows the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse in Rotherham.

A report to the committee said officers had considered an e-learning course and seminars, but had “reservations” they could be too in depth and irrelevant.

source: http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/

Coroner orders changes to taxi licensing after ‘unfit’ taxi driver killed motorcyclist in crash

A coroner has today ruled that the death of a motorcyclist killed in a head-on crash with a taxi was an ‘unlawful killing’.

Mark Buckley from Mansfield died after the crash in March 2014, having suffered “unsurvivable” injuries.

Nottinghamshire Coroner’s Court was told the taxi driver, Kevin Wiesztort, was unfit to be on the road due to lack of sleep – and the coroner has now demanded changes to licensing rules.

Mr Buckley’s partner Rachael Price told our reporter Charlotte Cross that she hopes those changes will save lives:

In a statement after the conclusion of the three-day inquest hearing, Ms Price said:

The last two and a half years have been incredibly difficult. Mark was such a positive, loving and funny man to be around and now we somehow have to rebuild our lives with only his memory.

My decision to pursue marks inquest to be resumed was because I believed that circumstances that occurred leading up to his death, if acted upon and monitored prior to the collision could have prevented it from happening.

Over the last three days the evidence I have heard has confirmed this.

To hear Dennis Lamb, the proprietor of Aaeron Cars, admit part responsibility into Mark’s tragic death was a bittersweet admission. I will be monitoring closely the outcome of his firm’s review in respects to his licensing conditions.

Mansfield District Council have worked closely with other licensing bodies across Nottinghamshire to implement changes to policies and procedures from the start of Mark’s inquest and I am hoping it will improve the future safety for the general public. I also hope other counties will look upon these changes in Nottinghamshire and review their practices to ensure this has national impact.

I hope to see safer practices enforced on taxi companies and their drivers in the hope that this can stop other people having to go through the pain and heartache we have been through.

I have offered to work closely with the licensing bodies to raise awareness in these matters and hope that going forward it can only be a positive step towards achieving this goal.

– Rachael Price

Mr Buckley, a father-of-three, was hit head-on in the crash with Wiesztort’s Fiat Doblò taxi, at around 5.30am on March 30, 2014 – Mother’s Day – as he travelled along the Derby Road in Kirkby-in-Ashfield.

Wiesztort had veered onto the wrong side of the road and smashed into Mr Buckley’s Yamaha, throwing him from the bike.

The court heard that less than two hours before the smash, Wiesztort’s customers David and Michelle Newton, who had been travelling from Mansfield to Birmingham Airport, had lodged a complaint with his employers Aaeron Cars.

They told the operator he should not be behind the wheel. He had been swerving between lanes, fluctuating speed without warning, and at one point took his jumper off over his head while on the M1, leaving them frightened for their lives.

The court heard that complaint was, in essence, ignored by the owners of Aaeron Cars, Dennis and Edna Lamb.

Mansfield District Council’s licensing chiefs have now launched an urgent, 28-day review into Aaeron Cars’ operating licence, after what the court heard were repeated failures to meet standards.

Officials from councils across Nottinghamshire have also joined together to overhaul licensing standards, introducing new guidelines to restrict who can get a taxi driver or operator licence.

These include stricter fitness to drive testing, tighter monitoring of drivers’ hours, and every taxi firm having a proper complaints handling procedure.

Nottinghamshire Coroner Máirín Casey said she hoped other councils would follow suit in raising standards.

Nottinghamshire Authorities Licensing Group are leading the way nationally in terms of the changes they have implemented in this case. This is much to be commended and is a fitting legacy for Mr Buckley.

– Máirín Casey, Coroner

In tribute, Mark’s family has described him as “thoughtful, funny and kind”.

source: http://www.itv.com

Minicab company owner to have licence reviewed after driver caused motorcyclist’s death

The owner of a Minicab company that failed to act upon a complaint against a dangerous driver who killed a motorcyclist is to have his licence reviewed, an inquest has heard.

Hayley Barsby, deputy chief executive of Mansfield District Council, told coroner Mairin Casey that the authority will review Dennis Lamb’s operator’s licence within 28 days as a result of evidence heard in the inquest into Mark Buckley’s death.

The 34-year-old was killed in the early hours of March 30, 2014, when Minicab driver Kevin Wiesztort collided with him on the A611 Derby Road at 5.30am

Wiesztort admitted causing death by dangerous driving and was jailed last year for 45 months.

On Monday, the inquest heard that a dispatcher at Mr Lamb’s company Aaeron Cars, in Mansfield, received a complaint about Wiesztort’s driving and reported the issue to his wife Edna Lamb.

Mrs Lamb failed to act upon the complaint and just hours later Wiesztort hit Mr Buckley’s motorcycle.

The inquest heard that the company had no formal complaints procedure at the time of the accident but Mr Lamb said that he has since introduced a complaints sheet where employees can document them formally.

The hearing heard that Mr Lamb is subject to a “strict 12 month warning” until February next year to assess his fitness to hold an operator’s licence.

Miss Casey told the inquest that, following his evidence, Mr Lamb “concedes” that he failed to implement a complaints procedure or train staff in how to deal with them.

As a result, Mrs Barsby said she was concerned that Mr Lamb had been unable to adhere to the requirements of his notice.

She said: “Mr Lamb was to implement a complaints procedure and he was to train staff.

“I think it’s very clear on the evidence that Mr Lamb gave yesterday that that has not been put in place.”

Mrs Barsby told the court that the review of Mr Lamb’s operator’s licence would be a priority.

She said: “We will be requesting him to attend a panel hearing in order to satisfy that he is fit and proper to hold that licence.”
Read more: 200 Degrees is to open a fourth coffee shop

Police family liaison officer Helen Neaverson told the inquest that efforts could have been made to stop Wiesztort from driving if a complaint had been made to the police that day.

She said: “There’s a chance that we would have been able to find the vehicle – it wasn’t a particularly busy time of day – we would have known the route back to Mansfield and we would have been able to, potentially, put vehicles out looking for the Minicab driver.”

Samantha Yates, licensing team leader at Mansfield District Council, told the inquest that a letter was sent to Mr Lamb following a hearing with the authority in February, requiring him to implement a complaints procedure.

She said the council believed that Mr Lamb had fulfilled the requirement, however he admitted that that was not the case during the inquest proceedings.

Miss Yates said future checks will have to go further to find out “is this a reality or a piece of paper”.

Mr Buckley’s partner Rachael Price was also able to the witness.

During her questioning, she stated that Wiesztort continued to work for Aaeron Cars after the accident.

Coroner Miss Casey interjected and asked Miss Yates when Mr Lamb reported the incident to the council.

Referring to a report, Miss Yates said that he notified the council that one of his cars had been involved in an accident on April 1, 2014.

Miss Casey said that Mr Lamb had given a “partial account” and had left out crucial information relating to Mr Buckley’s death.

As a result, the council only investigated whether or not the vehicle involved in the accident was fit to be on the road.

The coroner asked Miss Yates what action would be taken if the council received a similar call now.

She said that a full investigation, including questions relating to any people involved in the accident, would be carried out.
The inquest continues.

Read more at http://www.nottinghampost.com/

Taxi driver Abdo Al Arab loses his appeal against Taunton Deane Borough Council revoking his licence

Barred taxi driver who ‘gave false address’ loses appeal to get licence back

A CABBIE who gave a false address to try to get a licence has been told the council was right to block his application.

Magistrates have upheld Taunton Deane Borough Council’s decision to revoke Abdo Al Arab’s taxi and private hire vehicle and driver’s licence.

Licensing officers at the Deane House became suspicious when Al Arab gave his address as a property in Taunton, having previously supplied a Bristol address.

Their enquiries revealed that the premises was actually vacant and had been for some time and there were complaints about Al Arab using his taxi in Bristol.

They suspected Al Arab of trying to get round the authority’s rules, which state that drivers living outside the district must prove they will use their licence to drive in the Deane and not elsewhere.

The policy was introduced in August 2015 in response to an influx of applications from drivers based in Bristol looking for an easier and cheaper route to obtain their taxi driver licence.

He was interviewed by council officers who subsequently revoked his licence.

Al Arab appealed the decision at Taunton Deane Magistrates’ Court, where the bench believed he had made a false statement on his application and upheld the council’s decision.

The district council was awarded costs of £300.

After the case, Cllr Patrick Berry, Taunton Deane Borough Council’s executive member for environmental services, said: “It is very important that the travelling public has confidence in taxis, their drivers, and the local authority that issues their licences.

“We have taken positive actions to ensure that the taxis and drivers that are permitted to operate in Taunton, live in or near the area and have the necessary knowledge of the towns and the surrounding countryside.

“So our message to the taxi drivers is, ‘You have to work here to have a licence’.”

source: http://www.somersetcountygazette.co.uk/

Killer taxi driver put passengers through “pure hell”, inquest is told

Taxi customers described a journey as “pure hell” and made a complaint about their driver just hours before he ploughed head-on into a Mansfield motorcyclist and killed him, an inquest was told.

Mark Buckley, 34, died when a taxi smashed into his Yamaha 125cc bike on the A611 Derby Road in the early hours of the morning.

Kevin Wiesztort is thought to have fallen asleep and his Fiat Doblo careered into the path of the bike ridden by the father-of-three who had been heading to work in Annesley.

However, the inquest into the death of Mr Buckley, held at Nottingham Coroner’s Court today, heard that a couple who had used the taxi in the hours before had even phoned the cab operators, Aaeron Cars in Mansfield, to complain about him.

Wiesztort had taken the pair, who are from the Mansfield area, to Birmingham Airport where they quickly rang the company.

Statements taken by David and Michelle Newton were read out at the inquest and had described his driving as “erratic”.

They said his speed fluctuated, he was fidgety and weaving in and out of lanes on the motorway, even crossing the rumble strips at one point.

The couple suspected he had either been drinking or was on drugs, and told the cab company that they did not want him picking them up when they returned from holiday.

Mrs Newton said: “I could not get out of that taxi fast enough. I told him he was not fit to drive and a danger.

“He had no right to be behind the wheel.”

The inquest was told how the cab radio operator, Stephanie Dudley, had taken the call from the angry passengers and she had contacted Wiesztort shortly after he had dropped them off.

He had stopped off at a garage to get an energy drink before heading back to the Mansfield area, but assured her he was fine.

Coroner for Nottinghamshire, Mairin Casey, asked Stephanie Dudley if the police had been contacted over his driving, to which she said they hadn’t.

Following the fatal smash, Wiesztort, 36, was found to have no alcohol or drugs in his system, but said he only had nine hours sleep in the three days previous to the accident which happened at around 5.30am on Sunday, March 30, 2014.

Wiesztort said he had no recollection of the incident, which happened near to Notts Golf Club.

Forensics suggested the taxi had veered completely over to the wrong side of the road, while conditions were described as being “extremely foggy”.

For his part, Wiesztort was jailed in February, 2015, for 45 months after admitting causing death by dangerous driving.

Earlier in today’s proceedings, Mr Buckley’s partner of seven years, Rachael Price, read out two heartfelt statements.

She said: “I would like to say it’s got easier, however, it hasn’t.

“In fact, at times, things have got much harder.

“We put our trust in taxi driver and expect certain standards to be in place.”

She told the coroner that she wanted to know what happened to the complaint made by the couple in the hours before her partner’s death and if any policies were put in place to prevent drivers from taking to the road if they were unfit through drink, drugs or even tiredness.

The inquest is expected to be completed tomorrow, Tuesday, October 25.

source: http://www.chad.co.uk/