- A legal requirement for anyone driving for financial gain
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What is the Driver CPC?
The Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) is EU legislation introduced to improve the standards of professional HGV and LGV drivers across Europe.
Who needs the Driver CPC?
The short answer is ‘most HGV drivers.’ If you want to earn money from driving, you need it. If you legally need the CPC and you don’t take it, you’re driving illegally. All pretty straightforward stuff.
The bit that is confusing is how the Driver CPC applies to you, and what bit of it you need to complete.
As the requirements are quite complex Easy As HGV has a team of CPC experts ready to answer your CPC questions, and advise you how CPC legislation affects your personal circumstances. However, as a general guide:
- If you’re new to professional HGV / LGV driving you must get the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) Initial Qualification.
- When you qualify you will be issued with a Driver Qualification Card (DQC) which you must keep with you when you are driving professionally.
- The Driver CPC Initial Qualification must be completed if you are under 21 years of age (whatever reason you are driving for).
- It must also be taken if you passed your car test after January 1997 and do not have a 7.5 tonne (Category C1) entitlement on your Driving Licence.
- If you passed your vocational licence before 10th September 2009 (C1, C1+E, C or C+E) and are over 21 you have “acquired rights” and do not need to take the Driver CPC Initial Qualification because of your experience. BUT you still need to complete 35 hours of Driver CPC periodic training every 5 years.
In effect, the legislation affects anyone who intends to drive a HGV or LGV vehicle for financial gain. But if you’re only driving for personal use (e.g. driving a horsebox or hiring a vehicle to move personal possessions) and are over 21 – the legislation does not affect you.
Most HGV / LGV drivers will need to take the Driver CPC Initial Qualification as a first step but ALL drivers need to comply with the Driver CPC periodic training requirements.
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What is the Driver CPC Initial Qualification?
The Driver CPC Initial Qualification consists of two parts: (i) a Theory Test and (ii) a Practical Test.
MODULE 2 – THE CASE STUDY THEORY TEST
The Theory Test is covered under Module 2 and is included in Easy As HGV’s Driver CPC Initial Qualification package:
- Revision is conducted online.
- The Case Study test is conducted at a DVSA Theory Test Centre and is multiple choice. It assesses your ability to apply your knowledge of highway code, health and safety, and industry best practice to real life scenarios.
- Your results are issued immediately after the test so you’ll know straightaway whether or not you’ve passed.
MODULE 4 – THE PRACTICAL TEST
The Practical Test is covered under Module 4 and is included in Easy As HGV’s Driver CPC Initial Qualification package:
- Training involves showing you the checks required to ensure the vehicle is safe to drive, as well as teaching you important health and safety skills, such as the use of common load restraints.
- The test requires you to complete a ‘show me, tell me’ walk round check of a stationary vehicle, explaining safety checks you’d carry out before starting your route, and health and safety features of the vehicle.
- An examiner observes your capability to conduct these checks correctly.
Once you’ve passed the Initial Qualification you will have 5 years in which to complete 5 modules of CPC Periodic Training.
Module 2 training is done online with our modern theory test revision software. The software is totally mobile so no matter where you are you can take advantage of the sophisticated learning material which includes case studies, sample questions and mock tests to bring your knowledge up to the standard required to pass first time.
Module 4 training is done at your local Training School, usually after you’ve passed any practical vehicle tests you have booked in. There’s no driving involved in this test, but you must show the Examiner that you understand the safety features of the vehicle, that you know how to conduct rigorous checks for faults or illegal immigrants and smuggled packages, and that you understand how to load and secure the vehicle ready for a journey. The Examiner may also ask you to demonstrate the use of various different loading restraints, for example to tie a dolly knot or use a ratchet strap.
To prepare you for this test you’ll receive training from your Instructor, in which you’ll be taught to use the load restraints and will be taught to check the vehicle thoroughly. Sometimes this training will be conducted on an individual basis, and sometimes it will be done in a group session.
How much does it cost?
The Initial Qualification costs £299 and you can take it at 45 training locations nationwide with Easy As HGV. This price includes both parts of the Driver CPC Initial Qualification, all of your revision materials and test fees, as well as vehicle hire for the Module 4, fuel and Instructional fees.
Visit our CPC Periodic Training page to find out more about how the Driver CPC will continue to improve your skills long into your career. If you’d like to chat to a Training Adviser about how the Driver CPC affects you, please give us a call on 0800 0744 007.
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