What is Driver CPC and do you comply?

Do you work in the road haulage or passenger carrying industry? Are you struggling to understand “What is Driver CPC?”  If so this blog will guide you through all you need to know to make sure you comply with this important issue.

What is Driver CPC?

The most important thing to know is that professional bus, coach and lorry drivers are now required to hold a Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) licence in addition to a vocational driving licence. So whether you’re coming into the industry new, are an existing driver or are responsible for a fleet of drivers, it is imperative that you are aware of how to comply with Driver CPC legislation and the correct licensing of drivers.

The aims of Driver CPC

The main aim of Driver CPC is to ensure better trained drivers, who are up to date with current legislation, and to help reduce road casualties – ultimately resulting in improved road safety.

The main business benefit to you, as an employer, is increased productivity and lower fleet maintenance costs in the form of:

  • Lower insurance premiums due to fewer accidents
  • Less business interruption due to fewer accidents
  • Less wear and tear on vehicles due to better driving behaviour
  • Increased fuel economy
  • Improved staff retention

Who needs Driver CPC?

All prospective and existing professional drivers of lorries, buses and coaches are affected by this.  So, whether hiring a new recruit or managing the transition to CPC certified drivers, it is essential that you are aware of what this licensing requirement involves.

How to comply with Driver CPC regulations

The Driver CPC Initial Qualification route is for any new drivers hoping to enter the road haulage or passenger carrying industries.

Initial qualification consists of 4 parts, all of which drivers must pass to qualify.

  • Part 1 – theory test (this includes a multiple-choice and hazard perception test)
  • Part 2 – Driver CPC case studies test
  • Part 3 – driving ability test
  • Part 4 – Driver CPC practical demonstration test

If successful, your drivers will be issued with a driver qualification card which must be kept with them at all times when driving professionally, and which will be valid for five years.

Periodic Driver CPC Training

Following initial qualification drivers must then complete 35 hours of periodic training every five years, if they want to keep their Driver CPC status.  Drivers can check online for the number of hours of CPC training that they have completed.

Only training that has been approved and delivered by a JAUPT registered provider will count towards certification.  Driver CPC Courses will qualify drivers for a minimum of seven hours for a one day course up to the full 35 hours for a 5 day course. Courses can be selected to not only fulfil driver CPC, but also to enhance drivers’ skills and deliver essential driver training.  Popular RoSPA courses which have been accredited are:


Driver CPC exemptions

Whilst Driver CPC regulations will apply to the vast majority of cases there are certain instances where exemptions apply. Drivers do not need a Driver CPC licence if the vehicle they drive:

  • Has a maximum authorised speed not exceeding 28mph
  • Is used by, or under the control of, the armed forces, civil defence, the fire service and forces responsible for maintaining public order
  • Is undergoing road tests for technical development, repair or maintenance purposes
  • Is a new or rebuilt vehicle which has not yet been put into service
  • Is used in states of emergency or assigned to rescue missions
  • Is used for driving lessons for those wanting to obtain a driving licence or a Driver CPC
  • Is used for non-commercial carriage of passengers or goods, for personal use
  • Is carrying material or equipment to be used by the driver in the course of his or her work, provided that driving the vehicle is not the driver’s principal activity

Diver CPC enforcement

Driver CPC is enforced in all European Union (EU) member states. Your drivers must always carry evidence of their Driver CPC status. If found driving without a Driver Qualification Card, (or a valid driving licence, if they have acquired/grandfather rights), they will be liable for penalties.

In short employers will not be able to use drivers who are not Driver CPC compliant.

 Share your Driver CPC Experience

With every new piece of legislation, confusion and a change in work practices are almost always inevitable – how are you coping with the introduction of Driver CPC licences? Are you on top of periodic training for acquired rights drivers?  We’d love to hear about your experiences and of course for you to share your tips on how best to cope with this change – please leave your comments below.

Why not explore our RoSPA’s Driver CPC Consortium and to find out how we can help.





6 thoughts on “What is Driver CPC and do you comply?

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  1. Do you know where I stand in relation to driver CPC, I drive a 5,500 ton vehicle which belongs to a charity, I do not carry any goods for sale, I am on the road from April — November visiting one or two towns a week, the vehicle has been specially designed information and assessment point where members are to come on if they wish, no fees are asked for or required, I manage the vehicle all day once I have built it up. At the end of the day I dismantle it and then drive to my hotel. I am employed by an exhibition company that do this, at a cost to the charity

    1. Hi Virgil, the best thing to do is call the CPC Helpline on 0191 201 8112. They will be able to discuss your personal situation and give you the best advice.

  2. Hi. I have a class 2 licence but drive a 7.5t with a Hiab for work that involves carting and erecting lamposts on a daily basis.
    This means that driving is not the main part of the work but carting the equipment to and from site and using the Hiab is.
    I have heard from a director in the company that they will not be putting anyone through the test as its not required for the type of work we do? Can anyone help with this question.

    Many thanks

  3. Hi, maybe someone can help me basically I’ve passed my test last year so I qualify as a new driver am I allowed to still b working whilst my cpc is in progress? I have been working but recently my agency have said I can’t drive class 2 but my understanding is that I have till sept this year to complete it

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