The Federal Office for Goods Transport (BAG) recently carried out a focus check control. Trucks and their drivers nationwide were checked at approximately 25 different checkpoints across Germany. According to the BAG's press release No. 37 of 21 September 2021, various violations in the areas of cabotage, driving, rest times and vehicle safety were detected.

Although it might seem that such inspections primarily relate to the transport companies carrying out the specific transportation, experience has shown that the shippers could also be affected by these control measurements. This can not only include a delay of the concrete transport (eg, if the driver is prohibited from continuing their journey), but it can also lead to proceedings against the persons responsible for loading and the shipper's company itself.

Even if the obligation to load and secure the load is usually transferred in the transport order or a framework agreement from the shipper to the carrier, this does not completely release the shipper from their obligations under public law. Control measurements must also be established and executed on a regular basis – and through irregular checks as well. The shipper must at least randomly check the roadworthiness of the vehicle, the validity of the necessary licences, and the driver's compliance with the driving and rest periods. In case of doubt, loading must be prohibited. Otherwise, considerable financial penalties may be imposed.

For further information on this topic please contact Carsten Vyvers at Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein by telephone (+49 69 97 98 85 0) or email ([email protected]). The Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein website can be accessed at