Driver Certificate of Professional Competence
CPC is a compulsory qualification designed to improve the knowledge and skills of drivers and enhance safety on our roads. It means that LGV and PCV drivers have to gain the recognised professional qualification before they can drive professionally. Driver CPC was introduced as a requirement of EU Directive 2003/59 and for LGV drivers its training requirements came into effect on 10th September 2009. It is an ongoing obligation and all professional drivers are required to hold a Driver Qualification Card (DQC).
There are a small number of exemptions, but the Driver CPC is a requirement for all professional drivers who drive a commercial vehicle ‘for hire and reward’.
- ‘New’ LGV drivers gaining a category C, C1, C+E or C1+E licence have to obtain the initial Driver CPC in addition to their licence to drive professionally. They are then required to undertake 35 hours of ‘periodic training’ every five years.
- ‘Existing’ drivers benefit from ‘acquired rights’ and do not have to take a fresh test, however are obliged to undertake 35 hours of ‘periodic training’ to keep their Driver CPC valid.
It is illegal to drive professionally without Driver CPC and both the driver and operators can be fined up to £1,000 without it. Drivers will also be suspended from working until training is completed and insurance premiums are also likely to rise.
Driver Qualification Card
DQCs are valid for 5 years from when they are issued and the expiry date is unique to each driver. During each 5 year period the driver must complete mandatory periodic training known as Driver CPC. They are required to complete 35 hours of training in blocks of 7 hours. We recommend that the best way to ensure that a DQC doesn’t expire is to carry out at least 7 hours of Driver CPC training each year.
Making the most from CPC training
Driver CPC training improves driver knowledge, increases safety and makes professional drivers employable. You will be a better driver as a result and you can choose which modules you want to take. Your choices could depend on your current role or any specific areas where you would like to improve your knowledge.
Steps to Driver CPC:
- Decide how you want to do your 35 hours of training. As mentioned above, the modules you decided to take are completely up to you but you must complete at least 7 hours at any one time. The best way for any driver to meet their obligations is to spread their training over the five year period – complete one day (7 hours) each year, as this will spread both the cost and time.
- Ask your employer if they can help you gain your Driver CPC qualification
- Book yourself a place on a JAUPT-approved Driver CPC training course. Speak to your local Driver Hire office, or take a look at Driver Hire’s Driver CPC Training website to view a variety of module choices and book online.
- Before booking, as yourself – “Will I benefit from the training modules on offer? Do I fully understand the costs? What is included, and what’s not? Is the training provider a well-established, professional company and are the courses JAUPT-approved?”
- You won’t have to take a test – successful completion of the course is based on attendance.
- Apply for your Driver CPC qualification card once you’ve completed your 35 hours, you must carry your card at all times whilst driving professionally.
What will I learn?
Courses vary depending on the approved training provider you choose, but subjects covered may include:
- Fuel Efficient Driver
- Delivering Driving
- EU Drivers’ Hours and RT(WT)R
- Digital Tachograph
- Health & Safety
- Driving Commercial in the UK
- Dealing with on-road occurrences
- Road Traffic Laws
- Customer Service
For further information on Driver CPC, please visit the Driver Hire Training website or speak to your local branch.