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Given the reality that CPC driver training is now required throughout most of Europe, it would make sense that the training would be utilised to bring all European HGV drivers up to speed regarding the regulations in the various countries they travel. A great example would be educating foreign drivers about the lay-by rules here in the UK.

We published a blog post not too long ago talking about the misuse of lay-bys primarily by non-UK drivers. Concerns were made official during a recent meeting of the Transport Committee as members reviewed data from Highways England. The data was from the Smart Motorways scheme that has grown to include sections of the M1, M4, M5, M6, M42 and M62 motorways. Highways England is planning to further expand it in the coming years.

Committee members heard testimony indicating that foreign HGV drivers routinely misuse lay-bys. One survey from the RAC suggests that more than 20% of their members have observed such misuse themselves, especially on roads leading to and from port areas. The Transport Committee was warned that this misuse must stop if Smart Motorways is going to be expanded safely.

Ignorance or Purposeful Abuse?

The question now on the minds of committee members is whether the misuse of UK lay-bys is the result of ignorance or purposeful abuse. In either case, expanding CPC driver training to further educate drivers on the use of lay-bys seems appropriate. It should be coupled with more aggressive enforcement efforts and the construction of more lay-bys that are both longer and wider.

The need to build more lay-bys is evident by the danger posed when an articulated lorry stops in the emergency refuge area. Most of these areas are just large enough to accommodate a single truck; there isn’t even enough room for emergency workers who might be responding to an emergency or broken down vehicle. When an articulated lorry is stopped in a lay-by, there is no place for a car that might need to stop.

There is some speculation that foreign drivers are using lay-bys as a place to pull off the road when they reach drivers hours limits. If that is the case, additional CPC driver training is in order. Drivers must understand that lay-bys are not an appropriate place to rest. Not only is pulling into an emergency refuge area unsafe for the driver, but it also makes things more complicated when legitimate emergencies arise.

Here at the HGV Training Centre, we are in full agreement that more needs to be done to keep motorway lay-bys free of HGVs not using them for emergency purposes. We also believe that better CPC driver training would help foreign drivers who do not understand the concept.

The HGV Training Centre offers CPC driver training to both individuals and companies here in the UK. As an approved provider, we can custom design training courses for company drivers to meet the needs of your business while also helping your drivers maintain compliance.


Commercial Motor – http://www.commercialmotor.com/news/foreign-registered-trucks-misuse-emergency-refuge-areas-hazard


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