Here at SACT we have four types of drivers: contracted, who do a set amount of paid hours per week; sessional, paid drivers who drive for us as required; members, who drive for member organisations; and volunteers, who are willing to have their names passed on to member organisations to drive for them. Information on each is found below.
Basic driver information.
To drive most of our vehicles you must be aged 25 to 75 and have a D1 entitlement on your licence. D1 was automatically added to licences up until 1st January 1997. Since then it has been categorised as an add on, simliar to PSV and HGV. You must undergo a course of PCV training and have it added to your licence. Costs start at around £800. Most of our 10-17 seater vehicles fall into the category, requiring D1.
We also have three MPV size vehicles which seat up to nine, including the driver. These vehicles do not require a D1 entitlement, but you must be aged 25 to 75.
Information on licence categories can be found here.
Assuming you meet the criteria above, all you need do is register with us using this Driver Application Form and supply a copy of both sides of your driving licence.
To have had MiDAS (Minibus Driver Awareness Scheme) training is an advantage, but all drivers are expected to complete their MiDAS training within their first year of driving our minibuses. Costs start at around £70 for basic and £100 for enhanced training, which includes wheelchairs.
Contracted & sessional drivers.
Drivers will receive full training on each of our vehicles in order to get the right Heath and Safety knowledge required for the safe installation of wheelchairs and occupants and to give the best customer service in our minibuses that they can.
Jobs vary from long all day runs to shorter split shift runs depending on the needs of the customer. Customers include sheltered housing units, day centres, community associations and youth groups.
Drivers are also encouraged to create their own work by suggesting and planning trips on which they would like to take our Out & About Club members.
Drivers are paid for the hours they work from collection to return of the vehicle.
Organisations which use our buses often have their own paid or volunteer drivers working for them. Once the driver is registered the organisations just let us know who is driving the bus when booking it and everything is good to go. Member drivers are asked to attend a brief familiarisation of the vehicles they will be using.
As you may expect volunteer drivers are always in great demand. Volunteer drivers come from all walks of life and have a variety of reasons why they like to volunteer, from just getting out of the house to using it as a route back into the workplace to name but a couple. Volunteering is a great way to give back to the community.
The driver application form asks whether we may pass on your details to organisations that are looking for a volunteer driver. Please consider ticking the box if you are able to give up some of your spare time to worthy causes every now and again.
Preferred Volunteer Drivers.
If as an organisation you would like to use one of our volunteer drivers for every hire you make, please nominate them as a Preferred Volunteer Driver. There is an additional Volunteer Driver Application Form that needs to be completed by your preferred driver. On the booking form please add their name in the relevant box and we will do the rest.
Advanced Driver Information.
Having been accepted as one of our drivers you need to know what happens next when using and driving the buses.
There are two forms which will need to be completed for every hire.
The Defect Sheet
The Vehicle Operators and Standards Agency (VOSA) dictates that a walk around be performed before and at the end of each journey to ensure that the vehicle is in a roadworthy condition before you set off and on it’s return to the operator. A driver is held liable for defects found while on the journey and it is the drivers responsibility to ensure vehicle defects which occur on the journey are reported to the operator on return of the vehicle. The operator must ensure the vehicle is kept in a roadworthy condition between hires.
In practice this means taking 15 minutes or so to examine the vehicle properly and tick the boxes on the form as you perform the inspection. Failure to inspect the vehicle properly could lead to breakdowns or worse, points on your licence. Failure to complete the form on return could delay or cancel the next hire if a fault is subsequently found. It is in everyone’s interest to complete the form correctly.
The Journey Log
The log sheet is of importance to the hirer, driver and to SACT for different reasons. The log sheet, filled out correctly, will provide SACT with the necessary information in order to invoice the hirer correctly. Prices are based on the vehicle type (registration number), travel distances (mileages) and hired driver time (pick up/return times). The hirer needs to sign the document (group signature) to accept the charges, as provided by the driver as correct. Finally, the driver needs to accept the terms and conditions reminder by signing the form. At SACT we have to measure the usage and so the passenger ‘type’ needs to be recorded too. Pre-printed forms containing pre-travel information are available on request and require less time to complete. Please ensure it is completed accurately.
On each bus is an information folder containing defect sheets, log sheets and other driver information which may be of use. Please look though it at your leisure.
On board your bus should be a step, a first aid kit, sick bags, a bio hazard clean up kit and other materials used to keep the bus interior clean. It is the drivers responsibility to ensure the bus interior is returned clean and tidy or to note on the defect and log sheet, why it isn’t. Cleaning charges will be applied to the hirer in certain circumstances.
If there is any item missing or you think something could be added, please let us know. Driver feedback, good and bad is essential if we are to ensure that driving in one of our vehicles is an enjoyable experience.