Thousands of stretched limousines across the country could be made redundant from next month if new legislation’s are not taken seriously.

Letters were sent to limousine operators this week by the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) giving them twenty days to get vehicles certified to Certificate of Initial Fitness (COIF) standards if their vehicles carry more than eight passengers.

They were also told to make sure they hold a valid Operators Licence, or risk having their vehicles impounded under the new legislation which come into effect in October.

Nick Clarke, owner of Star Limousines based in East Sussex told thechauffeur.com; “Most of the industry received letters this week notifying them of the changes. It basically means that operators like us who run vehicles such as Hummer H2 limousine will have to obtain a COIF certificate if we want to continue trading.”

He added; “Unfortunately this cannot happen overnight and can take weeks to complete and costs around £15,000. Also it takes a minimum of six weeks to get an operators licence. I do fear that many operators will simply disappear when this legislation is enforced.”

Operators throughout the country are being encouraged to attend the UK’s biggest trade event for the limousine and chauffeur industry to hear VOSA talk about the new legislation. The event takes place on 26th and 27th September 2009 at the Transport Research Laboratory, near Bracknell, Berkshire.

To attend, visit www.drive09.co.uk and register free-of-charge.

Founder and editor of The Chauffeur magazine in 2003, Paul has worked in the media industry since he left college at 17 years old. Starting off in newspapers, he soon developed into local and then national radio stations including BBC, Capital and ITN. Paul is now a BBC Independent Producer and runs the Sussex Press Agency which provides journalism services, video production and PR. On top of this, he continues to run thechauffeur.com, a dedicated news and review website for the UK’s chauffeur and limousine industry.