The following section contain information on the questions that drivers most frequently ask us. Many of them are about Driver CPC or how to use tachographs correctly.
Q) What is driver CPC?
A) Driver CPC stands for the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence. In practice, it does not assess competence, but is a programme of periodic training which provides continuous professional development for professional drivers. Training is attendance only, there are no exams to sit.
Professional drivers of large goods vehicles of more than 3.5 tonnes, or passenger-carrying vehicles with nine or more seats, must complete 35 hours of compulsory periodic training in order to obtain or renew a Driver Qualification Card (DQC), often referred to as a Driver CPC card.
Driver CPC courses must be JAUPT approved. Each single day course will usually count as 7 hours towards Driver CPC, but you can complete all 35 hours on a five-day course.
This 35 hours of periodic training must be completed every five years to keep the DQC up to date. You cannot drive professionally without a current DQC, so you must hit your Driver CPC deadlines.
Q) What do I do if my Driver Qualification Card (DQC) is lost, damaged or stolen?
A) If your DQC (Driver Qualification Card) is lost, stolen or damaged then you must apply for a replacement card via the DVSA (Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency).
You must call the DVSA on 0300 123 7721 with the following details:
Your name as it appears on your Driving Licence
Driving Licence Number
Date of Birth
There is a charge of £25 for the replacement card which will need to be paid via debit or credit card over the phone.
You should receive your replacement card within 20 days of paying for the replacement. You are able to drive professionally in the UK whilst waiting for your replacement. If you do not receive your card within this timescale, contact the DVSA.
Q) Who is exempt from driver CPC?
A) The Government provides information of who needs Driver CPC and who is exempt here:
Q) How do I check how many hours Driver CPC I have?
A) You can check how many hours of periodic Driver CPC you have completed online via the Government website.
Q) Are there any tests to take for periodic driver CPC Training?
A) No, there are no tests. Driver CPC training is attendance only, but you will learn useful industry information and best practice.
Q) Can I work without undertaking Driver CPC?
A) No. Not unless you fall under one of the exemptions.
Q) What are the rules on Drivers Hours?
A) Drivers' Hours are framed by EU rules www.gov.uk/drivers-hours/eu-rules AETR rules www.gov.uk/drivers-hours/aetr-rules and GB domestic rules www.gov.uk/drivers-hours/gb-domestic-rules. There are separate rules for Northern Ireland www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/tachograph-and-drivers-hours.
If any part of your driving falls within these rules, you must comply with daily driving, break and rest requirements. The rules apply to most vehicles used for the carriage of goods, even if empty.
The Government website gives lots of guidance on exemptions and compliance for Drivers' Hours here. www.gov.uk/drivers-hours
Q) How often should Driver Periodic Training take place?
A) 35 hours of Periodic Training must take place in 5-yearly cycles consistent with Driver CPC renewal. This must continue until such time as the person no longer wishes to drive category C or D vehicles professionally.
The driver has flexibility as to how he/she takes the 35 hours training over this time, providing training occurs in blocks of at least seven hours at one time. So, for example, a driver may complete two blocks of 7 hours in the first year, and the final three blocks of seven hours in the fifth year. A driver could leave all 35 hours until the fifth year.
Q) How do I get my digital tachograph card?
A) The DVLA has an online form ordering service where you will find the application form for the Digital Tachograph Card.
The service is free and easy to use simply follow this link to DVLA online forms.
Q) Can I leave my driver card in the unit overnight?
A) Yes, you can leave your driver card in all week (company operational procedures permitting) if you want, remembering to change the mode to 'rest' and select end location before you go home and 'other work' and select start location when you arrive.
Q) How and when should I renew my driver CPC?
A) You must repeat your periodic Driver CPC training every five years. On your Driver Qualification Card, which is also often referred to as a Driver CPC card, or simply as a DQC, you will see that there is an expiry date. This is stated at section 4b of your DQC. You must attend 35 hours of periodic Driver CPC training before that expiry date. This is your periodic training deadline.
You can complete your 35 hours of Driver CPC training by attending 5 modules of 7 hours each, or you can attend a 5 day course which will allow you to complete all 35 hours in one week. (Sometimes this is scheduled across two weeks, or part of a week and a weekend, depending on availability.)
Many drivers will have the same deadline, because when Driver CPC was first introduced, bus and coach drivers were required to complete their first cycle of training before 9th September 2013 and LGV drivers were required to complete their first cycle of training in time to meet a deadline of 9th September 2014. There will therefore be a large number of drivers whose deadlines fall on similar dates, but it does not apply to every driver.
When you need to renew your Driver CPC can depend on a number of factors, such as when you passed your ordinary car driving test. It is essential, therefore, that you know exactly when your own deadline is, as stated at 4b on your DQC.
Your deadline is not only the date that your DQC expires, it is also the date by which you must have completed all 35 hours of Driver CPC training. You cannot drive after the expiry date if you have not completed all 35 hours of Driver CPC training and renewed your DQC. Do not wait until after your deadline to attend Driver CPC training, or you will not be able to drive until you have completed all 35 hours of Driver CPC.
In order to ensure that they fit in all 35 hours before the renewal date, some drivers now complete one 7 hour module of training each year, so they don't have to fit in 5 days of training all together as their deadline approaches. The Traffic Commissioners also favour this approach as it demonstrates a commitment by both drivers and operators to ongoing training and continuous professional development.
If you have left it until nearer your deadline to renew, don't panic, you can complete all 35 hours of Driver CPC training in one 5 day course. Please bear in mind, however, that because many drivers share the same deadline, demand for places can be very great, and it may be difficult to find a course with spaces closer to your deadline. If possible, please book well in advance in order to avoid missing your renewal deadline and being unable to drive.
Q) Are there identity checks before attending a CPC course?
A) A formal identity check will need to be carried out and recorded confirming the identity of each driver on a course. This requires a visual check of an official form of identification, the following identification is acceptable:
A Passport and an old style Paper Driving Licence
Photo-card Driving Licence
Old style licence & a Digital Tacho Card
Driver Qualification Card (DQC)
Please note that you must bring along at least one of the above items to each course you attend.
The above is for identification purposes only; you must also ensure that you bring the relevant documentation that proves you are entitled to drive an LGV / PCV. We kindly ask that all attendees bring their driving licence with them and those who already hold a Driver Qualification Card (DQC) bring this with them to a Driver CPC course for a thorough check of entitlements and expiry dates. Please note: if you do not have a current Driving Licence Card you will not be able to obtain your Driver Qualification Card (DQC).
Drivers undergoing a medical review, and therefore not in possession of their driving licence, should hold a receipt from the DVLA; this will confirm their driving licence number. Provided that the driver can produce this receipt and relevant photographic ID as stated above, which can be verified against the DVLA receipt based on the driver's name and date of birth, then the training can proceed.
It is essential that drivers attending training bring with them on each day of training one of the forms of identification mentioned above, if drivers fail to provide one of the above forms of acceptable identification their training hours will not count towards periodic training and they will not be able to attend the course.
Q) Why cant I enter my 'Start duty' in local time?
A) All entries in the digital tachograph must be in UTC time, which is minus 1 hour in the summer and local time in the winter.
Q) Why does my driver card only record 'drive' and 'work'?
A) Use of the mode switch is more important and essential on the digital tachograph, even more so than an analogue. Your card will always record 'drive' (when driving) then 'work' (when stationary), unless you change the mode switch to 'Break' or 'POA'.
Q) What does the initial Driver CPC qualification involve?
A) GV (Lorry) Drivers - If you passed your car driving test on 1st January 1997 or later and your LGV test after 10th September 2009 you will have to pass the Driver CPC Initial Qualification to gain a Drivers Qualification Card (DQC.)
PCV (Bus/ Coach) Drivers - If you passed your car driving test on 1st January 1997 or later and your LGV test after 10th September 2008 you will have to pass the Driver CPC Initial Qualification to gain a DQC.
For many newly qualified drivers, if you have not passed the Initial Qualification (and therefore not gained a DQC), where required, you are not permitted to undertake any Periodic Driver CPC training. Novadata cannot accept responsibility if you attend a Driver CPC training course (or part of) and it is subsequently discovered that the training hours cannot be uploaded as you have not gained a DQC via the Initial Qualification. In this event no refund will be given in this event (as per our Terms and Conditions of Business see Point 5, document enclosed).
There are four parts of the Initial Driver CPC which many professional drivers will need to take before they can obtain a Driver Qualification Card, also known as a Driver CPC Card.
Q) How can I correct a digital tachograph manual entry if I make a mistake?
A) If you have confirmed your digital tachograph manual entries, they cannot be changed.
Q) I have left my driver card at home, can I drive without my card?
A) No, you need your card to drive the vehicle.
Q) How many digital tachograph rolls should a driver carry?
A) 2 full ones and one in the tachograph head unit.
Q) Where can I find more information about the digital tachograph?
A) Contact us on 01520 249030 or Email Sales@h-tectransport.co.uk