The Scrap Metal Dealers Association is concerned that both Scrap Metal Dealers and Motor Salvage Operators are being lured into a trap that might one day bite them. In order to protect our members we are openly airing the issues that we have with record keeping. The 1964 Scrap Metal Dealers Act and the Vehicle Crimes Act required us to collect very different records, obviously because we are 2 very different businesses. However in 2013 when the untrained eye of pen-pushers decided that Motor Salvage Operators looked like scrap yards and therefore they would call us all Scrap Metal Dealers, issues arose in record keeping.The 2013 Act is very precise as to what records we are supposed to keep. We all understand that the information on those records will never stop crime because of the following factors
1. It asks for the wrong information to be recorded
2. It has asked for 2 separate industries to record the same information as if one form fits all
3. Although the information gathered is exact, no standard template was devised so all the businesses have a different layout making reading of the information impossible police.
4. The information is gathered and kept for 3 years in storage but never collated or processed in order to track and trace5. The Local Authorities licensing officers that deal with taxis and pubs and clubs, haven’t any idea what the records signify6. The Local Authorities have no idea that we also have to collect other information for the DVLA and the Environment Agency.
Despite spending a year traveling the country teaching Licensing Officers what their job are, we also noticed as we travelled that many businesses are not collecting the correct information as per the law.
The reason for this we believe is because
1. The local authority couldn’t advise as they don’t have a scoopy doo.
2. The Environment Agency are very good at telling businesses what information they need.
3. In order to comply businesses follow the Environment Agency guidelines which is their own set of rules and regulations not the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 law.
WHERE DOES THIS LEAVE US TODAY?
Under the SMDA 2013 law the charge of not taking down the correct information is a level 5 fine ( which can be any amount above £5000) It also applies to not only the business owner, but the site manager and the person that was in charge of writing down the information. As if that wasn’t bad enough you’ll all get a criminal record and won’t be able to be licensed in the future.
Many businesses will be reading this and thinking they are OK. However, you are not. if you are relying on your waste transfer notes to be your records. Waste Transfer Duty of care notes are for the ENVIRONMENT AGENCY and not for the SMDA 2013.
Businesses have been able to get away with using the wrong information because their Local Authorities don’t know what they are reading, or do not bother visiting. However this is leaving you vulnerable in the future should the Gestapo decide to come a knocking.
The Scrap Metal Dealers Association is offering all its members a standard template for their record keeping book ( a totally separate book from the Environment Agency or DVLA information) for incoming metal. If you wish to protect yourself and start collecting all the information required by law, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org