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Driver CPC

Detailed regulations

The EU passed the Driver CPC EU Directive in 2003.  This affects all professional PCV and LGV drivers. For new drivers it introduces a new initial qualification - the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) which increases the amount of knowledge that drivers will need before they can drive.

Driver CPC training from Defensive Driver Training


Selecting the right courses for YOUR business
Most of the courses listed below are available in 3.5 hour modules and are individually approved by JAUPT. Click on any course for more detailed information.

You can combine two modules of your choice which are relevant to your operations to make up a seven hour course for example, Module 1 - Defensive Driving with Module 5 - Reversing & Manoeuvring.


Driver CPC Aims & Objectives

If you drive a bus, coach or commercial vehicle for a living then the Driver CPC qualification applies to you. 


What is Periodic Training?

The EU passed the Driver CPC EU Directive in 2003. This affects all professional PCV and LGV drivers. For new drivers it introduces a new initial qualification - the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) which increases the amount of knowledge that drivers will need before they can drive.

For new drivers the initial qualification now consists of a four part test,

  • Module 1 Theory test

  • Module 2 CPC case studies test

  • Module 3 Practical Driving Test

  • Module 4 CPC Practical Test

Upon successful completion of the four part test, drivers are given a Driver Qualification Card – DQC – which is valid for five years from the test date.

All drivers, new and existing, then have to undertake 35 hours of training every five years to ensure that their driver CPC is current. This is known as Periodic Training.

Only courses that have been approved and are being delivered by a training centre that has been approved by the Joint Approvals Unit for Periodic Training (JAUPT) on behalf of the Competent Authority will count towards the Periodic Training requirement of 35 hours.

Periodic Training is designed to confirm and expand existing knowledge and skills of each driver to ensure that they continue to be safe, courteous and fuel efficient drivers.


When did  it start?

The Directive has been effective from 10th September 2008 for the PCV sector and from 10th September 2009 for the LGV sector.


What licence categories does it affect?

Category C, C+E, C1, C1+E, D, D+E, D1, D1+E.

Drivers driving a 7.5 tonne vehicle or a minibus with more than 9 passenger seats on a Cat B car licence under grandfather rights, are also required to obtain a DQC to be entitled to driver for hire or reward. These vehicles are now classed as LGV Class C1 or PCV Class D1.


Owner Drivers

The Certificate of Professional Competence for an owner driver will not cover you under the new regulations. The new Driver's CPC follows a different curriculum and covers operational topics such as safe and fuel efficient driving.


If you already have a full LGV or PCV licence

You will not have to have to undergo two separate Driver CPC's, one will cover both. But you will have to ensure that you undertake 35 hours of relevant training in the five years from the start of the Driver CPC training cycle - September 10th 2008 for PCV and 2009 for LGV.

The five year cycle then restarts. You will therefore need to have completed a further 35 hours of approved training by September 2018 if you are driving a PCV for a living. If you are driving a LGV for a living, the deadline is September 2019.


Drivers on Foreign Licences

Drivers with licences that are not registered with the DVSA still need to complete 35 hours of training before the expiry date on their current DQC. After each course they will receive a certificate confirming they have completed seven hours of approved training. When they have five certificates they can post these to the DVSA along with a completed DQC1 form. They will then be issued with a new Driver Qualification Card. .

The Training Syllabus

The Driver CPC training syllabus covers regulations on Health, Road and Environmental Safety and Customer Service and Logistics. The training for PCV and LGV may differ but both disciplines will cover the basics of Safe and Fuel Efficient Driving, Application of Regulations, Health & Environment, Customer Service and Logistics.

Training Sessions

The Driver CPC training is only available from training bodies approved by the Driving Standards Agency (DSA). Each separate training session must last at least seven hours in 24 hour period, but those sessions can be spread over several years or delivered in one week. The total requirement is for 35 hours training in a five year period.


The Police and DVSA officials will ask to see your Driver CPC card at roadside checks or if you have been involved in an accident. The cards are issued when acquiring your Category C, C1, D or D1 licence for new drivers, and after completing 35 hours training for existing drivers. Fines of £1000 can be applied to both drivers and employers for a breach of the regulations.

Exemptions - the following are exempt

Driving a vehicle with a maximum authorised speed which does not exceed 45KM/H.

Driving a vehicle under the control of or used by the Armed Forces, Civil Defence, Fire Service or Forces responsible for maintaining law and order.

Road testing vehicles for technical development, repair or maintenance purposes, or for driver training.

Driving a vehicle carrying materials or equipment for use in the course of work, providing that driving that vehicle is not their principle activity.

Dual carriageway

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