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Bus and coach drivers with ‘acquired rights’ are being warned that there’s less than a month to finish their training.

The Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) was introduced in:

  • 2008 for bus and coach drivers
  • 2009 for lorry drivers

New drivers who drive for a living had to start taking the Driver CPC initial qualification from then.

Existing drivers were given ‘acquired rights’ which took their previous experience into account.

September training deadline

By law, all professional drivers must do 35 hours of periodic training every 5 years.

You have until 10 September 2013 to finish your training if you’re a bus or coach driver with acquired rights.

You risk being fined and even losing your livelihood if you don’t complete your training by the deadline.

Lorry drivers with acquired rights now have less than 13 months to finish their training.

Drivers and operators must be aware of deadlines

Alastair Peoples, DSA and VOSA Chief Executive, said:We know that the majority of these drivers have completed, or are on track to complete, their first cycle of training in time. Periodic training keeps drivers’ skills up to date, helps save money through improved fuel efficiency and reduced accidents, and contributes to safer roads in Britain.

VOSA officers already routinely check the Driver CPC status of professional drivers. After the deadlines they can also check whether ‘acquired rights’ drivers have completed their training or are driving illegally. Not being aware of Driver CPC is not an excuse for drivers or operators.

The deadline for bus and coach drivers with acquired rights is 10 September 2013 and for lorry drivers with acquired rights it’s 10 September 2014

“Get qualified and don’t risk your livelihood”

The Office of the Traffic Commissioner has also repeated that operators must be aware of their drivers’ training hours and deadlines to avoid penalties.

Joan Aitken, lead Traffic Commissioner on Driver CPC, said:

The bus and coach industry is now entering the most critical phase of this training, with only one month to go before the deadline expires. Drivers who have completed the required hours and worked hard to achieve the driver qualification card (DQC) can continue to provide vital services for the public after 9 September 2013.

But those who have yet to finish the training – and drivers who have not recorded any hours – must make sure they are qualified by the deadline if they want to carry on working in the industry.

Traffic commissioners have made it clear that drivers and operators will be brought to their attention when there are offences of driving without aDQC or failing to produce it. This could result in driver and O licence sanctions. Our message is simple: get qualified and don’t risk your livelihood.

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