About Driver CPC

By now, all drivers should have a Driver Qualification Card, or DQC. There are a small number of exemptions, but as everyone now knows, if you’re a professional large goods vehicle driver (C, C1, C+E or C1+E), then Driver CPC is an ongoing obligation. Professional PCV drivers with equivalent licences are also required to hold a DQC.

Ongoing requirement

Whether the initial DQC was gained as part of the drivers’ initial licence acquisition or by attending Driver CPC training courses, Driver CPC is an ongoing requirement. It is mandated by EU law (Directive 2003/59) and is designed to improve the knowledge and skills of drivers, as well as enhancing safety on our roads. Brexit will not change the requirement for Driver CPC in the foreseeable future.

What must a driver do?

Each DQC is valid for five years from the date of issue. This means that – unlike the 2014 deadline set when Driver CPC was introduced – each driver’s renewal date is unique to them.

All drivers must undertake 35 hours’ periodic training before the end of the five years following the issue date on their DQC. If the training is not undertaken during that time, they will not be permitted to drive professionally until they have completed their 35 hours.

The best way to ensure that a DQC doesn’t lapse is to carry out at least one day’s mandatory periodic training every year.

The consequences

If a driver is caught driving commercially without their Driver Qualification Card:

  • Both driver and operator face fines of up to £1000
  • Driver suspended from driving commercially until training is completed
  • Possible reduction in driving workforce, and operations adversely affected
  • If operations are affected, your reputation with customers could be damaged
  • If convicted, operator’s OCRS rating will drop to red
  • Likely increase in insurance premiums

What should I look for in Driver CPC training?

When choosing your Driver CPC training provider, look for a wide range of relevant topics for drivers to choose from. This keeps the training useful, interesting and engaging. Look out for interactive elements, such as videos, quizzes and feedback sessions, which will benefit drivers, and add real value to the training.