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Red_Dragon_Bus 07-02-2005 00:52

7.5 tonne licence
What is the maximum weight any rigid vehicle can be with only two axles?

18 Ton, above that it must have a third axle

What is the largest vehicle that can be driven on a category C licence?

The holder can drive any rigid vehicle with no restriction on weight (provided it is not carrying passengers under PCV regs)

What is the largest vehicle that can be driven on a category D licence?

The holder can drive any rigid vehicle with no restriction on weight (provided it is designed to carry passengers under PCV regs) The holder may also drive a purpose built bendi-bus articulated vehicle as it is considered to be one unit.

The maximum design weight of a bus must be stated on the vehicle; The ULW must be written on the side of the vehicle on the near side in front of the back wheel arch. The carrying capacity must be stated on the vehicle, to include the seating capacity and standing capacity. On double decker vehicles the seating capacity is stated as upper and lower. Standing is not permitted in the upper deck as this would affect the stability of the vehicle. The seating capacity of a bus is governed by weight and not volume, 15 people equals 1 ton. The luggage space is calculated and factored in with the seating capacity, added to the ULW to determine the MAM. Category D licence holders are permitted to drive any size of bus which is approved by the UK government for use on our roads.

If a PCV driver is caught with too many people on their vehicle they will be prosecuted in the same way as a HGV driver would be prosecuted for overloading their vehicle, or a car driver would be prosecuted for over loading their car.

A category D1 licence allows the holder to drive a vehicle with upto 16 passengers. As stated before any rigid vehicle can be upto 18 ton on 2 axles, if it is over 18 ton it must have 3 axles.

A category C1 licence allows the holder to drive a vehicle not designed to carry passengers under PCV regs upto 7.5 ton

As stated category D vehicles are not restricted by MAM, however :D

They are restricted by seating capacity; thus a vehicle with seating for 16 passengers allows a payload of just over 1 ton [15 people = 1 ton], if you add luggage you might get away with a payload of 2 tons.

Now considering the fact that pre 1997 licences permitted drivers to drive;

A car upto 3.5 ton

A vehicle [goods vehicle] upto 7.5 ton

A bus upto 16 seats [which actually equates to about 7 ton]

It would take a very broad interpretation of the legislation to say that a bus which is designed to carry people rather than "goods" should need to weigh more than 7 ton, the company I drive for has a 17 seater transit which has a MAM of 6.9 ton.

If a minibus was 18 ton it would have to be filled with 11 tons of something other than people. And I would argue that the extra weight would have to be cargo of some description which would make it a "goods vehicle".

If you have a vehicle with 7 tons of people and 11 tons of cargo, I would say that was a dual purpose vehicle under the road traffic act, rather than a bus?

GeorgeTelford 07-02-2005 09:37

Hi All

Or with the law as it stands at the moment a Motorhome of any weight at all, whethor a pre or post 97 Licence. The police tend to avoid mtorhomes other than cursory checks. And as a Judge said on appeal recently the law as turned a blind eye to the size irregularoties for years.


Red_Dragon_Bus 07-02-2005 18:15

I am still waiting on your legal definition of a motor car as per statutory instruments.

GeorgeTelford 07-02-2005 18:58

Hi Jonathon

As far as cars go I am not interested (not being rude honest, I really am not interested in car definitions), what I have alluded to several times are motor caravans.

Min of Transport/VOSA definition basically dont laugh they look and see if any reasonable person would think it was, loosely based on C&U, the following is from a fax From VOSA Vehicle Inspectorate division.

"motor caravan" means a motor vehicle (not being a living van) which is constructed or adapted to carry passengers and their effecta and which contains as permenantly installed equipment, the facilities which are reasonably necessary for enabling the vehicle to provide mobile living accomodation for its users; motor caravans are not classed as goods vehicles for MOT test purposes and therefore in Class IV or V depending on their seating capacity, but regardless of their size and weight

"living van" means a vehicle, whethor mechanically propelled or not, which is used as a livinjg accomodation by one or more persons, and which is also used for the carriage of goods or burden which are not needed by such one or more persons for the purpose of their residence in the vehicle; Living vans are classed as goods vehicles and depending on their weight are either class IV or VII within the MOT test scheme or are subject to HGV Plating and testing.

I will had this to the weights thread it throws what VOSA said earlier into doubt especially re the people living in and "trading from" (without goods)


Red_Dragon_Bus 07-02-2005 19:10

Why not answer the question?

You are legally permitted to drive a Car with a B licence, what is the legal definition of a Car? That definition will tell you what you CAN legally drive on a B licence.

What can you legally drive on a car licence?

ie Define a car.

You are reading into the legislation what you want to read.

There is no driving licence category for motorhomes or motor caravans.

The basic legal prescedent of the pre 1997 driving licence is that the holder is issued with B D1 C1

B is a vehicle upto 3.5t
D1 and C1 are vehicles upto 7.5t (based on cargo carried or seating capacity.)

You have jumped on the fact that it DOESNT say you CANT drive a motorhome over 7.5t as it doesnt actually have the words motorhome or motorcaravan in the legislation.

You insist that a motorhome is not a "goods vehicle" as it does not carry goods for hire and reward.

If you are limited to a vehicle upto 7.5t on the basis of the D1 and C1 licence what makes you presume you can drive a motorhome regardless of weight.

Don't quote construction and use, they don't issue driving licences.

GeorgeTelford 07-02-2005 19:35

Hi Jon

You are reading what DVLA say, unfortunately (fortunately?) they cannot quote the law which backs this up Re motorhomes not cars.

If you can show, where a motorhome is restricted by weight.

Why can I not quote construction and use? DVLA specifically direct you to Marsham and Marsham disagree with DVLA.

Marsham say that like minibuses a motorhome is not restricted by weight, DVLA agree that a minbus could legally be up to 16 Tonnes single axle and be driven on the same licence that restricts you to 7.5 tonnes or the one restricting you to 3.5 tonnes, they just dont accept that motorhomes are, but the legislation does not back them up.

When the only case went to court it was abandoned after 3 adjournments by the CPS, they say through lack of evidence, but that is nonsence all the evidence is still on file, Driver statement, camera evidence and plod on the ground.

Ring them, I did and ask under what law the case was being tried, if you look it up it refers to goods vehicles. get the definitions of a goods vehicles from C&U (this dept is refered to in the legislation as the people responsible for defining vehicles) Do that and you will see that they could not proceed as there was no law to prosecute the driver under.

Over to you


Red_Dragon_Bus 07-02-2005 19:46

Yes but if you read the OP, as you are aware the DVLA cannot state law.

The legal precedent of the pre 1997 licence is a vehicle upto 7.5t

If you do the maths there is no need for a 16 seat vehicle to weigh more than 7.5t,

Why do you thinkg you are limited to 16 seats on a D1 licence?

Why not 19 or 23 or 25??

16 is the magic number, that is the number of people you can carry along with reasonable personal luggage in a vehicle within 7.5t

The current DVLA staff "don't know" or have forgotten the relationship between seating, weight and vehicle size.

As I said, Why would you need a 16 seat passenger vehicle not used to carry "goods" which weighs more than 7.5t??

The D1 licence does not state MAM as it states seating capacity. Bus licence categories are based on seating as that is how a driver interprets the loading of the vehicle.

A motorhome is not restricted by weight, you can have a motorhome as big as you want. It does not mean you can drive it on a licence which relates to a "car"

The definition of which you still do not want to look at.

GeorgeTelford 07-02-2005 20:03

Hi Jonathon

I posted that the DVLA statements are not law ages back when people were quoting the DVLA info. That is why I spent about 4 months exchanging Phone calls and faxes with the DVLA's Legal Dept. They quoted the 99 size part, I sent back the reference to the earlier legislation, they said it was superceded by 99 I countered with 99 does not supercede in that area and were it does supercede, it is stated clearly at the beginning.

DVLA are basing their stance on legislation which refers clearly to Goods vehicles, they originally claimed C&U agreed that a motohome was a goods vehicle, after I presented the fact that Mearsham actually disagreed the DVLA then came out with, we are not here to give legal advice, although they had tried and failed over a 4 month period to back their claims.

Pls Jonathon stop quoting DVLA dross and read the legioslation.


Red_Dragon_Bus 07-02-2005 20:04

I have read the legislation.

Now tell me what the legal definition of a car is!

crackpot 07-02-2005 20:32

Excuse me for jumping in. the way I see it is this.
If you aquire a 7.5 tonne GVW goods vehicle,and then proceed and convert it to a "MOTORCARVAN" ,that vehicle is no longer a 7.5 goods vehicle it is a "MOTORCARAVAN". It does not carry or is able to carry goods any more.
Same applies if you do the same with a bus or coach,once converted it is a "MOTORCARAVAN". Unable to carry fare paying passengers any more.

If it is a "MOTORCARAVAN" it is a class 4 MOT
See-:VOSA, MOT Test: Fees and Appeals.

All of our vehicles started off as commercial bases they just ended up as "MOTORCARAVANS" which takes the "commercial" out of the equation.
So the bottom line is, if it is a "MOTORCARAVAN" you can drive it on a car licence :wink:

One proviso is you must not exceed the gross weight of the vehicle regardless :lol: And it must be registered as a "MOTORCARAVAN" :roll:
I await being shot down on this :o


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