Driver CPC: A barrier to truckers getting back behind the wheel

Driver CPC: A barrier to truckers getting back behind the wheel

20 Oct 2021 Posted By Kate Gibbs

The RHA and our members have long had a problem with Driver Certificates of Professional Competence (Driver CPC).

But it has come into sharper focus following the Government’s return to HGV driving letter – which has been sent to lapsed and retired drivers. Unlike Lord Kitchener’s famous “Your Country Needs You” call to arms, there are few signs the letter has had the desired effect.

So why’s that?

As we know, drivers hate CPC – they loathe it and the idea of coming back to driving but first having to sit in a classroom being told things they know is anathema to them.

Driver CPC creates a barrier for experienced qualified lorry drivers returning to the cab. It puts a hurdle in the way, adds complexity, and is seen by many drivers as pointless.

We have suggested a simple compromise: one day’s classroom CPC in return for one year’s driving.

The Association of Pallet Networks wants to see a two year suspension with a promise of reform or abolition at the end of that time.

Across the industry the government’s response to the driver shortage has been described as too little, too late.

Charlie Shiels from Arrow XL described Driver CPC as the straw that broke the camel’s back after its introduction, triggering the early retirement or notice of thousands of truckers near retirement age.

The Traffic Commissioners are no fans either. We are told after Brexit that the chance to make our own laws gives us freedom we never had before.

The government must now act to reform driver CPC if it wants to demonstrate a serious commitment to tackling the driver shortage.

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