With the second Periodic Training deadline fast approaching for truck drivers needing to re-qualify for their Driver CPC, there are growing concerns over the number of drivers looking to leave enrolment till the last minute.

With just months to go until September 9, 2019 – which marks the second five-year Driver CPC training deadline for drivers with acquired rights – there’s growing anxiety in the transport industry over a “worrying trend” in the number of truck drivers who have still not yet booked onto the mandatory training courses.

All HGV drivers with acquired rights must complete 35 hours of periodic training before September 9, 2019 in order to remain legally compliant.

After that date, anyone caught driving professionally without having renewed their Driver CPC qualification can be fined up to £1000 by DVSA.

But recent DVSA statistics have suggested there is still 75 per cent of the training to complete.

Training deficit Data from DVSA shows in the six-month period from January to June 2018, the Driver CPC Periodic Training market is reported to have had 20 per cent fewer attendees than the previous cycle – which equates to more than 100,000 drivers.

Up until February 2018, there were only slightly fewer attendees compared to the previous cycle, after which the shortfall has increased.

Introduced for LGV drivers in 2009, Driver CPC Periodic Training is intended to maintain high driving standards and improve road and vehicle safety, and requires existing, qualified drivers to complete 35 hours of training across a five-year cycle.

However, from 2009 new drivers entering the industry take the Initial Driver CPC Qualification.

While they must complete continued training hours, they are not tied into the same cycle, with their five-year period starting at the time of qualification.

The Road Haulage Association (RHA) has already stated its concerns that truck operators leaving it to the last minute won’t be able to get their drivers trained in time.

“If you leave it to the last few months, you might struggle to find suitable courses or enough spaces to book for your drivers,” said RHA chief executive, Richard Burnett. “I’d urge hauliers to arrange driver training days now.

“Having drivers who can’t drive is disastrous for an operator.”

It’s apparent a common belief among some hauliers is that the Driver CPC will no longer be required after Brexit.

However, this isn’t the case. Drivers will still need to complete their training regardless of the Brexit outcome.

Brexit effect

Operators must not fall into the trap of believing Driver CPC is going away,” said David Slack, commercial director at Driver Hire Training.

“The government has made it very clear that the rules are not going to change before the Driver CPC deadline. And if Brexit does become very difficult, making changes to the Driver CPC isn’t going to be an early priority!

“Drivers will need to have their Driver CPC up to date – and if they don’t, they will not be able to drive commercially,” he warned.