If you are an operator and you carry goods for hire and reward then you need an operators licence
If you decide to operate as a haulier of goods for hire and reward on a public road without an operator’s licence, you are breaking the law. You may be prosecuted and fined under the Road Transport Acts – the maximum fine is €1,904. Any trader or business owner hiring an unlicensed haulier is also at risk of a fine.
The RSA and An Garda Síochána enforce the licensing provisions of the Road Transport Acts. As well as a fine, if you are an unlicensed haulier you can expect the RSA to look closely at your compliance with other laws, such as those covering:
Certain types of activity are exempt from the licensing requirement. You don’t need an operator's licence to carry the following within Ireland:
- Cattle, sheep, pigs, livestock or turf
- Milk or milk containers to or from a creamery or cream-separating station
- Newly harvested wheat, oats and barley from 1 August to 30 November each year from a farm to a place of storage, assembly or processing.
In addition, an operator’s licence is unnecessary if your vehicle (or combination of the vehicles to be used) has a maximum authorised weight of less than 3.5 metric tonnes, including the vehicle, fully laden, and any trailer or semi-trailer.
Where to get an operator’s licence
Road haulage operator licences are available from:
Road Transport Operator Licensing Unit
Department of Transport
Lo-call: 1890 443 311