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The Freight Transportation Association (FTA) recently repeated its warning to drivers and operators who still may be complacent regarding driver CPC regulations. They say there are still far too many who have not taken the requirements seriously, despite comments from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) suggesting otherwise. According to the DVSA, companies and individuals are generally complying with driver CPC requirements.

So who’s right? Actually, they’re both right.

The CPC requirements apply to all commercial drivers operating certain classes of vehicles. That said, there are two different certification deadlines depending on the type of licence the driver holds. PCV licence holders were required to be certified no later than 10 September 2013. Their HGV peers have until September of next year.

The different deadlines have resulted in different outcomes for both classes of drivers. As we expected, HGV licence holders have not enrolled in CPC classes en masse because they do not see a need for it just yet. Moreover, because many drivers must pay for training themselves, they do not want to spend the money until absolutely necessary.

On the other hand, most PCV licence holders have already completed their training. Those who have not are being dealt with on a case-by-case basis, along with the operators who employ them. However, be warned; compliance is not an option. If an operator or driver is caught in a noncompliant state, the penalties can be severe.

One example is a PCV operator who was handed the maximum £1,000 fine for allowing a non-certified driver to operate a vehicle. There have been several reports of drivers actually losing their licenses as well. In addition, this past August, another PCV operator was forced to suspend operations because the company had not even begun the process of certifying drivers.

Roadside Compliance

According to the DVSA, no specific enforcement efforts have been put in place to identify PCV drivers who are not in CPC compliance. However, every routine stop of a commercial vehicle will include a CPC check. The DVSA says more than 110,000 checks were conducted in 2011/2012 to verify compliance with existing rules; there’s no reason to believe fewer checks will be undertaken in the future.

The HGV Training Centre urges all PCV operators and drivers who have not yet completed CPC certification to do so right away. You may not be caught today or tomorrow, but that day will eventually come. It could mean the loss of a licence, the loss of your business, or excessive fines and other penalties.

We also urge HGV operators and drivers to not delay their CPC training either. Next year’s deadline is now but 10 months away. By the time spring rolls into summer, we expect training classes to be filled to capacity. It is best to get training completed now while classes are fairly open.

The FTA reminds drivers of all classes that the driver CPC requirements are not going away. The UK is serious about making sure drivers are compliant.

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