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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/amendments-to-driver-cpc-regulations/outcome/amendments-to-driver-cpc-regulations-response-to-consultation
The Department for Transport (DfT) in conjunction with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) sought views on the department’s proposals for implementing the requirements of the Amending Directive On Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) (Directive 2018/645/EC).
The overall reaction to most of our proposals was positive. Ministers have taken into consideration all the comments made. The directive will be implemented as soon as possible.
On 18 March 2020, DfT and DVSA published an online consultation on amendments to Driver CPC, which ran until 29 April 2020. This consultation set out proposals to implement EU Directive 2018/645 EC in domestic law. This primarily involved proposals regarding;
- an exemption for maintenance personnel driving category D and D1 vehicles
- dropping the ‘personal use’ phrase from exemptions for non-commercial
- an exemption for certain drivers in rural areas
- an exemption for drivers in some industries
- views on alternatively fuelled C1 vehicles being driven on a category B licence
- a definition of driving as a principal activity
- amendments to Section 1 of Annex 1
- amendments to the delivery of periodic training
The consultation also sought views on proposals to issue longer Driver CPC course approvals periods, roadside enforcement of Driver CPC using the electronic record and recognition of Swiss Driver CPC.
These proposed changes were additional to those made by EU Directive 2018/645.
192 responses were received to the online consultation, along with 26 other submissions, including from road haulage and public transport associations, road safety bodies, vocational driver training associations, vehicle manufacturers and other road transport professionals.
Ministers would like to thank everyone who contributed to this consultation.
Of the larger organisations and representative bodies, responses were received from the Freight Transport Association (FTA), Confederation of Passenger Transport, Community Transport Association, National Farmers Union, National Farmers Union (Scotland), Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, the John Lewis Partnership, Equality and Human Rights Commission, Association of Local Bus Company Managers, Bus Users and Transport Museum Wythall.
FTA expressed concern that the consultation coincided with restrictions arising from the coronavirus outbreak, which had prevented them from consulting with stakeholders in the usual way.
Please note that not all of the respondents completed each question and some rather than respond directly to the question used it as an opportunity to state a particular opinion of Driver CPC or road safety in general.
Please also note that all percentages have been rounded up or down to the nearest whole number.
Disclosure of information
As part of the consultation, we told recipients that, at the end of the consultation period, we would publicise some of the responses received in the response to consultation report unless the respondents made clear that their responses were to be treated as confidential.
Eight of online respondents asked for their response to be treated as confidential.
This report identifies comments only from respondents who have not requested confidentiality. The statistical analysis includes replies from all respondents who indicated whether or not they supported each of the proposals. Not all respondents commented on every proposal or question.
The new requirements will be implemented by making changes to the Vehicle Drivers (Certificates of Professional Competence) Regulations 2007 SI 605, which apply to the United Kingdom.
1. Exemption for maintenance personnel driving category D and D1 vehicles
Question 1. Do you agree that we should retain our current arrangements and not change the UK law?
131 respondents answered this question online of which 95 agreed that we should retain our current arrangements.
Of those who agreed one individual stated ‘the current arrangement works well and drivers understand their role’ another comment was ‘The law works perfectly well at the moment and therefore don’t change it.’
Of those who disagreed one respondent stated ‘The exemption should be removed as we have come across many mechanics who road test loaded vehicles and drop goods off at a customer on the way back to the depot’.
Another considered that ‘There should be specific wording relating to the vehicle being moved for the purpose of maintenance’.
Of the larger representative bodies, the Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT), The Community Transport Association (CTA), the Association of Local Bus Company Managers (ALBUM) were in favour of the proposal. CTA considered that the current arrangements were working satisfactorily, they were unaware of significant issues affecting the community transport sector and that domestic legislation was broadly in line the Directive.
The Freight Transport Association (FTA) and John Lewis supported the continued use for the existing exemption for the movement of empty vehicles.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Trainers (SMMT) did not, however, agree with the assessment. They considered that vehicles would need to be tested loaded, and returning to the original domestic legislation would not allow this and to retain the current exemption for maintenance personnel.
The existing exemption for a vehicle undergoing road tests for mechanical, repair or maintenance purpose or the driver of a new or rebuilt vehicle which has not yet been put into service is not changed. So this would not prevent a vehicle being tested loaded which concerns the SMMT.
After taking all views into account the government has decided to retain our current arrangements which are intended to facilitate the movement of an empty vehicle between maintenance sites for purposes such as cleaning, refuelling or in preparation to be put into service.
The regulation permits an empty C, C1, D and D1 vehicle to be driven within 100km radius of the driver’s base, providing the vehicle is being driven by a person whose principal activity is not driving these vehicles.
Question 2. Do you agree we should implement this exemption?
174 responses were received to this question online with 126 agreeing with the proposal.
One respondent stated ‘Certainly would. Clarification is certainly needed in cases where driving isn’t their first job and only very rare’
A number of the larger representative bodies were in favour of the change, which would provide clarification of the position.
The Freight Transport Association (FTA) had been seeking clarity on this issue, surrounding exemptions for section 19 and 22 permit holders, in view of advice that had been issued which had deviated from the previous understanding. As the interpretation turned on the phrase “for personal use”, they felt this change would help to clarify the position and should be made quickly.
CTA considered that the phrase “personal use” should not have been used in the past to determine whether or not an exemption should apply, as they felt interpreting the wording as the phrase “carriage of passengers for personal use” was questionable. The new definition would add clarity and remove uncertainty.
They considered that any investigations or enforcement activity against drivers who may have been in breach of this requirement should be suspended.
The change was also supported by Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FBHVC), SMMT, ALBUM and Transport Museum Wythall who, along with FTA and FBHVC, felt that there should be clarity in the definition of “non-commercial”. FBHVC felt that this issue affected vehicle classification, for example, where it was “historic” and, for bus museums, the legal regulation of travel services provided.
John Lewis operates a small fleet of minibuses for non profit and not for hire and reward, the drivers doing so as part of this role combined with other duties. They suggest these drivers having an exemption from the PSV Driver CPC as this syllabus does not accurately reflect the operation of these vehicles. They delivered lorry Driver CPC courses and felt that the content of these courses may be better suited to these drivers.
This measure was, however, opposed by CPT. They did not feel it was appropriate for section 19 and 22 holders to compete for business with “O” licensed operators when they were subject to lower safety standards.
We have looked at this issue closely and we feel that it would benefit the clarification of the exemption, for those who are likely to use it, to remove the “personal use” condition. One issue on which clarity was sought was the phrase “non-commercial”. We consider that it is sensible to include in guidance a definition of this which is consistent with that used in other transport regulations.
The definition in drivers hours guidance offers a clarification which would seem to apply here. These are contained in the guidance affecting passenger carrying vehicles, however, the can equally read across to goods vehicles. They are as follows:
“The term “non-commercial” can be applied to journeys where either:
- the driver makes the journey for their own purposes eg in connection with a hobby and not to earn income. If there is a financial contribution towards that hobby, such as sponsorship, then the contribution does not exceed the total cost of the hobby
- no payment is made, either to the operator or the driver, for carriage per se
- any financial contributions made does not exceed the running costs of the vehicle for that journey (eg contributions towards the fuel costs)”
Having given this issue careful consideration, the government has decided to introduce the exemption.
Question 3. Would practical examples clarifying whether Driver CPC is needed in certain circumstances under the amended exemption help in understanding the law?
87 responses were received 74 of which agreed that some examples would be useful.
DVSA will accordingly publish updated advice on GOV.UK with new examples of non-commercial working and other exemptions, including the new ones in the consultation.
Of the larger organisations, the FTA, ALBUM, Transport Museum Wythall and the FBHVC agreed with the proposal, with some providing examples of the type of guidance that could be used. ALBUM considered that, where consideration for operation was made, in cash or other benefits, a Driver CPC should apply. FTA considered that, as this issue had a bearing on section 19 and 22 holders, an assessment should be made quickly and examples given.
CTA felt that it was premature to publish worked examples until guidance following a judicial review in 2019 was issued. This should apply across Great Britain and Northern Ireland and follow consultation with operators.
SMMT did not consider guidance to be necessary. This issue was well understood across the industry.
We are pleased with the strong level of support for the change in the definition of “non-commercial” to remove “personal use” and the inclusion of practical examples. We will now take forward developing those examples, taking into account comments made in responses to the consultation.
3. Exemption for drivers of vehicles in rural areas
Question 4. Do you agree with these definitions of a rural area? If not how should a rural area be defined and why?
105 responses were received to this question with 82 agreeing with the definitions of rural area outlined in the consultation paper.
These were as follows:
- in England and Wales as in the ‘2011 Rural-Urban Classification Of Output Areas’ published by the Office For National Statistics in August 2013
- in Scotland, as in the ‘Scottish Government Urban Rural Classification 2016’ published by the Scottish government in March 2018 to determine whether a driver is operating in a rural area
- in Northern Ireland, as in the ‘Review of the Statistical Classification and Delineation of Settlements March 2015’ (NISRA)
Of those who agreed one respondent stated ‘A ‘Rural Area” must be defined in law to prevent misuse and establishment of loopholes as there will always be people who will try and circumvent the law.”
One person who disagreed stated ‘I completely disagree with allowing exemption in rural areas. Driver safety is paramount on all roads and areas’. Another considered ‘No it should be UK wide everywhere or nothing’.
From a number of the large, representative bodies, there was general agreement with the definitions of rural. NFU, CTA, CPT and SMMT were in favour of this proposal and NFU(S) supported the Scottish definition to include small towns and avoid unfairly disadvantaging those in more remote or island-based settlements.
ALBUM, whilst acknowledging they were not expert in what constituted a rural area, noted that up to 10,000 population criteria were used by other government departments and for consistency suggested it was left in its current form.
A robust and enforceable definition of ‘rural’ would be required to introduce this exception as whether a driver was committing an offence or not would turn on it. There is no existing definition of ‘rural’ in criminal or road traffic law and definitions found elsewhere are used for statistical purposes, so further work would be required before this exception could be introduced.
Question 5. Do you agree with our intention to incorporate this exemption into UK law?
We received 140 responses to this question with 89 agreeing that it would be desirable for the exemption to be incorporated into UK law.
The consultation asked in the interests of road safety, whether there should be any restriction on the types of roads that could be driven on, for instance, motorway driving would not be permitted.
Of the larger organisations, the NFU and NFU(S) were in agreement but felt that it should be possible to use motorways and expressways and that these should not be excluded. The FTA, whilst accepting this amendment, were concerned about possible abuse; it would be necessary to establish an enforcement strategy to mitigate potential risk. CTA felt that whilst this would only affect a small number of their members, it would be beneficial within the charitable sector, for example when transporting furniture to charitable shops. SMMT also expressed support.
However, in view of the legal difficulties outlined above it is not possible to implement the exemption at this time. The comments raised about the type of roads to be included are, however, helpful.
4. Exemption for drivers of vehicles in certain industries
Question 6. Do you agree with our intention to incorporate this into UK law?
143 responses were received to this question with 90 of respondents agreeing with our proposal.
Of those that agreed one commented ‘Yes - incorporate into UK law.
However, there must be a maximum radius from base restriction included.’ Another stated ‘Yes with no range restrictions, it’s a free market in the UK and I imagine we might want to encourage temporary import of such vehicles from our neighbouring countries too.’
Of those that disagreed ‘No. If you are transporting goods for gain then there should be a level playing field for all.’ And ‘I believe that these drivers should not be exempt from training as they cover driving on roads where the UK has it’s highest percentage of KSI.’
NFU strongly supported the proposal, highlighting the incidental nature of road use by own businesses in the farming industry, NFU(S) welcomed the exclusion for agriculture, horticultural, forestry and farming as part of their own entrepreneurial activity.
FTA accepted the implementation of this amendment and noted that the Directive matches the same exemption in drivers hours rules. Whilst they did not support the wholesale mirroring of exemptions, it was sensible for exemptions affecting the same driver population to match. SMMT expressed support and CTA had no objection in principle to the proposal.
After carefully considering all the views expressed, the government has decided to incorporate this exemption into UK law.
Question 7. Do you think we should set a maximum radius that a driver can travel from the base of the business site when we incorporate this exemption into UK law?
144 responses responded to this question with 82 being in favour.
Comments on this question included ‘Limit should be on hours driven per annum, with a maximum in any month.’ ‘Yes, stick to the other radius’s currently being utilised to make it less complicated.’ And ‘No - for example, consider a mechanic, having taken a replacement vehicle out and returning with a repaired vehicle. The matter should be the start & finish points, not the distance involved.’
FTA accepted the implementation of this. CTA, whilst not having a view because none if their members fell into the categories of exempted industry, supported a geographical restriction as, allowing non-professional drivers to potentially drive the length of the UK could be a road safety issue, due to lack of experience and training. ALBUM, CPT and SMMT also supported the proposal.
NFU and NFU(S) were opposed. NFU(S) felt that many businesses were split across different locations and it would be difficult to administer from which bases the radius should be drawn. It would also increase travel costs. NFU felt that driving by farming undertakings would be incidental in nature and the 30% limit of driving time would have the effect of limiting the distances travelled.
After carefully considering all the points made, and again seeking to support business and the agricultural sector, we do not consider that limiting the distances travelled to a pre-determined radius would be justified at the present time. DVSA is due to carry out a post implementation review of the Driver CPC regulations in 2021 and this approach will be subject to further review then.
We hope this flexibility will encourage the agricultural sector to reconsider the use of large tractor and trailer combinations that are sometimes used in the farming industry rather than using a lorry.
The government has decided that a maximum radius should not be set out in UK law with this exemption.
Question 8. If so, what do you consider this radius should be?
150 responses were made to this question with respondents stating distances from 5 miles to 300 miles. Most were in favour of a radius between 50km to 100km.
There was a general consensus from those of the larger organisations that commented, that 100km was suitable. This was suggested by FTA, ALBUM and SMMT who commented that it was consistent with drivers hours legislation and other exemptions.
However, as advised in the previous point, the government has decided that a maximum radius should not be set.
5. Enabling certain alternatively-fuelled vehicles to be driven on a category B licence
Question 9. Is requiring extra training a proportionate and effective measure to ensure road safety when driving a heavier vehicle than a driving licence would usually allow?
133 responses were made with 93 agreeing with this approach but this and other questions about alternatively fuelled vehicles seemed to cause some confusion, many people appeared to be unsure what we were asking about and not indicating agreement or disagreement and commenting that ‘the type of fuel does not alter the safety aspect of heavy vehicles.’ And ‘No this is why they have already passed heavy goods test.’
Of those that agreed one stated ‘Yes, being able to drive a car does not necessarily give the driver the ability to safely drive larger vehicles.’
There was a range of opinion from the larger organisations on alternatively-fuelled vehicles. A number of responses included one comment which covered these 3 questions.
ALBUM supported this suggestion, believing it to be a proportionate way to ensure road safety. FTA supported the continued application of the existing derogation in GB for alternatively fuelled vehicles up to 4.25t. While the measure in the Directive appeared less burdensome, given it did not include the need for training, there was a concern that it would be more complex to apply and enforce.
The UK derogation was more straightforward in terms of both application and enforcement, and operators who invested in alternative fuel technologies could attain a payload benefit. However, there was concern about the continued life of the derogation.
John Lewis supported the continued application of the derogation. However, clarity was needed on the amount and content of specific training for these vehicles and also when and where this training would be recorded.
NFU(S) felt that there was a need to understand the current derogations before making any further changes. CTA did not feel there was sufficient information available; the LGV derogation had not been effective for long enough to make a judgement and there was limited information to suggest that any change would make a significant difference for promoting the use of alternative vehicles for PCVs. They recommended including this issue in a review in 2023.
Bus users felt there needed to be a consistent approach and commonality of regulation for all types of vehicles made heavier due to technology.
SMMT were opposed; the training did not actually involve driving a vehicle in the laden condition. They noted that it was also acceptable to drive a heavier vehicle up to 4250kg where used for wheelchair transport without any additional training and that a category B licence allowed driving on a range of different vehicles.
We are grateful for comments on this proposal. DfT is looking at the most suitable options for enabling driving of heavier, alternatively fuelled vehicles and will take comments made in response to the consultation into account in this process.
Question 10. Is requiring drivers to hold their licences for a minimum period of time before they can drive a heavier vehicle than their licence entitlement would usually allow, a proportionate effective measure to ensure road safety?
150 responses were received to this question with 68 being in favour.
- ‘I don’t believe the time should be a barrier as long as extra training is completed.’
- ‘No this is not a proportionate effective measure. This is a bad and ridiculous idea. I do not believe anyone should drive a vehicle more than their licence permits.’
- ‘As in previous questions this looks a nonsense proposal! Do you mean before they can start to drive (provisionally) a heavier vehicle?’
- ‘Yes. On-road driving experience is the way most higher-order cognitive skills related to driving (eg hazard perception) are developed and maintained.’
CTA proposed that 2 years was consistent with regulations on driving minibuses and would be proportionate and necessary to ensure the driver had acquired relevant driving experience before being permitted to drive a heavier vehicle. ALBUM believed this to be a proportionate approach. SMMT were in favour of this option.
FTA supported the continued application of the UK’s existing derogation and bus users considered that there needed to be more consistency and commonality of regulation for all types of vehicles made heavier due to technology.
Question 11. Is either measure preferable, and if so why?
141 responses were received to this question with no general consensus of opinion.
- ‘Training is preferable, the time a licence is held for does not equate to training or experience of driving larger vehicles.’
- ‘Out of the 2 choices, the option in question 8 would be preferable over the option in question 9. The first option could be an option in the early years to encourage operators to convert to green vehicles.’
- ‘A larger vehicle is a different drive line. It also has health and safety issues to its passengers and cargo carried. So yes we need to have the Driver CPC.’
- ‘I believe both measures should be adopted, however, in the interests of this document and the need to choose, I would suggest extra and ongoing trading would probably help in road safety more.’
SMMT felt that the length of holding a licence was the better option, which was consistent with motorcycle licensing. FTA believed that the current derogation should continue, CTA considered that there was insufficient information and Bus Users felt that there needed to be more consistency and commonality of regulation for all types of vehicles made heavier due to technology.
ALBUM suggested adopting both measures.
6. Definition of driving as a principal activity
Question 12. How could less than 30% of the rolling monthly time be recorded and evidenced to show that driving was not the principal activity?
180 responses were received to this question, with opinions ranging from creating a unique logbook to record the time, using drivers hours legislation, tachograph records or having the information recorded on the Driver CPC card.
Some of the larger organisations considered that this information was already recorded to a large extent. NFU observed that this was required under drivers hours rules. FTA commented that driving and working time should both be recorded for relevant drivers. They felt that enforcement should be by investigation and it would be useful if DVSA provided guidance for operators and drivers on recording where this definition is used.
NFU(S) felt that any recording of driving should be proportionate and not impose an undue burden. They recommended a simple approach. 30% of a 3 month rolling period (rather than 1 month) may even out peaks and troughs.
CTA noted that this did not apply to PCV drivers; section 19 and 22 permit holders’ guidance would be unchanged. They suggested employment records and drivers logs. SMMT suggested tachograph records as the best solution without adding an administrative burden. ALBUM considered that whatever system was adopted it should look at manual records and avoid costly and unwieldy IT systems.
We recognise that requiring new record keeping process may introduce unnecessary burdens on businesses, and that small businesses are particularly likely to make use of the exemptions that apply where driving is not a principle activity. These exemptions are for drivers of vehicles that are carrying material or equipment to be used by that person in the course of his work, provided that driving that vehicle is not his principal activity and drivers of vehicles used, or hired without a driver, by agricultural, horticultural, forestry, farming or fishery undertakings for carrying goods as part of the undertakings entrepreneurial activity, when driving does not constitute the driver’s principal activity.
Consequently, we will not mandate any new requirements or a specific format to record working time for the purposes of demonstrating compliance with this exemption. We envisage that most employers will establish an appropriate system for monitoring the driving time of their employees that make use of this exemption, in order to avoid committing offences under Regulation 10 (2) of the Driver CPC regulations.
DVSA is due to carry out a post implementation review of the Driver CPC regulations in 2021 and this approach will be subject to further review then.
8. Amendments to Section 1 of Annex 1
Question 13. Do you agree that the amendments to Annex 1 should be incorporated into current training programmes?
129 responses were made to this question. 108 people agreed with our proposal.
Of those who agreed amongst the comments were ‘Yes I think that amendments to Annex 1 are correct.’ And ‘yes, better auditing of what is being delivered should be made compulsory, there is too much old information still being pumped out by some of the Driver CPC training providers.’ Of those who disagreed one stated, ‘I disagree with the allowance of 12 hours of e-learning to count towards the total of 35 hours of Periodic Training.’
NFU agreed to the amendments to the Directive. They considered the training in animal welfare was compulsory and relevant to their role as drivers. It was appropriate and proportionate to take such training into account. CTA welcomed changes to training programmes that ensured training aligned with needs and was appropriate to the work of each driver, this proposal would bring greater clarity and reduce potential misuse of the objectives of courses. ALBUM felt the changes would improve clarity, flexibility and consistency.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) supported the proposal and stressed the responsibilities for training to be available arising from legislation on disabilities. CPT and SMMT expressed support for the proposal.
After carefully considering all the comments made, the government has decided to incorporate these changes to the course requirements.
9. Amendments to periodic training
Question 14. Do you agree that these amendments should be implemented?
137 responses were received to this question with 107 agreeing with our proposal.
Comments made by those who agreed included ‘Yes, however, I would add that why not consider the 7 hours to be in 2 parts and not just 2 consecutive days.’ And ‘Yes because the current Driver CPC syllabus is too vague.’
Of those that disagreed one stated ‘No - too many courses are too old, they should all be checked every year and so should the trainers.’
There were a variety of comments from some of the larger organisations to the idea of greater flexibility.
NFU(S) welcomed a more flexible approach to Driver CPC training, alongside the opportunity for those completing the training to receive more tailored or specific training if required. They stressed the need for support for trainers during the transition and that remote trainers should not be disadvantaged, expressing concern about e-learning for communities with poor broadband; it was important there were alternatives. There should be clear guidelines and drivers should have a choice of trainer.
FTA felt that the changes mostly constituted clarifications. They supported further flexibilities in minimum training delivery times. Where the training is undertaken in another recognised training scheme and not specifically accredited as Driver CPC training (for example ADR), submission of a recognised certificate of completion would be allowed to stand for a set number of Driver CPC periodic training hours (this should not prevent an ADR course counting towards Driver CPC when uploaded).
As e-learning does not constitute large swathes of a Driver CPC course, and there should be little risk of any driver accruing as much as 12 hours of e-learning across 35 hours, there should be no need for any new registration process for e-learning courses.
CTA suggested, for ease and practical purposes, extending the e-learning period to 14 hours rather than 12. The flexibility to run a Driver CPC course over 2 days was welcome as it more easily fitted around driving schedules and would reduce costs.
Bus users supported the use of e-learning, which was now commonplace and this arena should not be different. Drivers at any location would be able to update training without the need to be removed from the workplace, with the subsequent inconvenience to passengers. They also felt that drivers should be offered Disability Assistance training as part of their Driver CPC.
EHRC commented that the Amending Directive now explicitly grants the Member States the discretion to include (or not) the mandatory disability awareness training for bus and coach drivers under the Regulation as part of the Driver CPC periodic training programme. They welcomed the clarity from the EU on this specific issue and expressed their support for the proposal.
ALBUM welcomed the use of ICT tools to improve the learning process but felt it important to ensure that appropriate means of control were in place to protect the integrity of the learning process. They welcomed the delivery of courses digitally during the coronavirus emergency and hoped this would allow a move to a permanent situation.
However, there needed to be controls to ensure a full understanding or learning undertaken (for example questions during the course) and secure user identification processes. They welcomed splitting the 7 hour period over 2 days, allowing flexibility on delivering training to meet operational requirements, and agreed that the e-learning training period should be limited to a 12 hour period.
They considered it important to ensure that the same 7 hour training module could not be completed 5 times to meet the 35 limit. They agreed that training should reflect an organisation’s needs and not be imposed through a rigid syllabus, allowing the employer to choose the course content or the individual if they were self-employed.
John Lewis felt that splitting training over 2 days represented a slight increase in flexibility compared with the existing allowance, they would like to see further flexibilities such as over a week and non-consecutive days. They would not want to see a system where e-learning had to be registered and a driver recorded e-learning against other periodic training hours, which would require new functions in the recording and evidencing system. They considered e-learning a supplement to learning and not a full replacement.
Transport Museum Wythall felt, along with similar representative bodies, that driving and maintaining historic vehicles required different skills compared with modern vehicles, with their high dependency on technological systems. Training on modern vehicles was or limited use to organisations such as themselves.
CPT and SMMT also agreed with the proposal.
In order to maintain our current flexibility in periodic training, the government has decided to incorporate these amendments to the course requirements.
10A. Longer course approval periods
Question 15. Do you consider that course approval periods should be extended from the current 1 year?
135 responses were received to this question with 97 agreeing
One respondent who agreed with our proposal commented ‘As a JAUPT approved training centre, we have at least one course that has been re-approved on an annual basis since 2008, with hardly any amendments.
So, we would appreciate a reduction in the administrative burden if approvals of periodic training courses could be extended to at least 2 years, possibly 3 years.’
Of those who disagreed one stated ‘No, They should always be reviewed each year, courses should change to reflect what the industry requires.’
A number of large organisations commented on this proposal. NFU(S), felt it would reduce administrative burden and associated cost. FTA and John Lewis supported the proposal and made similar points, considering that it may need to be introduced as an option if some courses needed to be updated annually and that, as a reduced administrative process would be involved, the fee for a longer course should not be double that charged currently.
ALBUM did not object, as long as course content was still relevant and current; some courses may only be relevant for one year but there should be nothing to stop courses having a longer validity. Bus users considered a maximum period, rather than a fixed one, should be set. CTA, CPT and SMMT were also in support.
EHRC were not in favour as they felt that longer course approval periods meant that training content was less responsive to legislative changes. High quality, relevant disability awareness training should remain up to date.
Under current arrangements, training providers have scope to submit minor corrections and updates during the lifetime of the course approval, and approval can be withdrawn if it is no longer up to date. DVSA will now consider how best to instigate longer course approval times.
Question 16. If so what time period do you consider should be adopted?
146 responses were made to this question with a number of time periods being suggested from 6 months to 10 years.
The larger organisations suggested various periods. FTA, SMMT and John Lewis proposed 2 years, as did CPT with the possibility of one and two-year approval options. CTA proposed 2, but no more than to 3, years, NFU(S) 3 years and ALBUM up to 3 years as long as the course was still relevant. Bus users proposed 5 years.
DVSA will now consider which time period to recommend to ministers, taking into account the need for flexibility for the industry balanced against road safety concerns.
10B. Enforce Driver CPC at the roadside from the electronic record
Question 17. Do you think we should explore the option of enforcing Driver CPC compliance from the electronic record?
125 responses were received to this question with 83 agreeing with our proposal.
Of those who agreed one stated ‘Yes, consideration should be given to including the information on the tachograph card and including the license information on the same card, such that a professional driver is required to carry only a single card.’
Of those who disagreed one stated ‘No. The card is a good system that works well as a reminder to the driver, enforcers and companies to check records.’
A number of the larger organisations were in favour, provided there were safeguards.
FTA supported the proposal. They felt that the requirement to carry a DQC comes from the GB regulations and not the EU Directive and pre-dates significant use of electronic records available to DVSA officers at the roadside. It would be necessary to retain a requirement to prove compliance through Driver CPC or Code 95 for non-UK drivers.
ALBUM considered it perverse that a driver had to carry and produce the DQC but not the driving licence. They supported a consistent approach to the driving licence and Driver CPC and that both should be able to be checked electronically, with neither having to be carried at all times.
Bus users felt this would avoid passengers being stranded and, if this was not possible, supported the driver showing his licence at a police station within 7 days. SMMT felt this was consistent with the future direction of compliance enforcement. NFU(S) were in favour provided there were sufficient safeguards regarding drivers’ identity with clear guidelines.
CTA had no particular views but noted that the physical driver card is useful for verifying identity and any roll out of electronic record must be linked to a driving licence check for enforcement officers and other agencies, such as employers, trainers and Employment Agencies.
DVSA will now consider practical ways that electronic enforcement could be introduced in the future.
11. Recognition of Swiss Driver CPC
Q18. Do you have any comments on the recognition of Swiss Driver CPC?
158 responses were made to this question, 89 had no comments.
Of those who expressed an opinion, there was a majority in support of continuing to recognise Swiss Driver CPC. Others were not aware that Switzerland utilised Driver CPC and some respondents were did not agree that we should recognise the Swiss qualification. Some would expect reciprocal recognition of UK Driver CPC in Switzerland and for the standards to be of an equal standard to that awarded in the UK.
FTA and CTA were content with this proposal, as were ALBUM, as long as the requirements to obtain it were the same or better than in the UK and reciprocal arrangements applied. ALBUM commented that bus shortages continued to be a challenge for the industry. Bus operators should be able to recruit from anywhere as long as they meet UK standards.
In accordance with our international obligations and to provide the same flexibility for UK drivers when travelling to Switzerland, the government has decided that the UK will continue to recognise the Swiss Driver CPC qualification.