All professional drivers of large goods vehicles must have a Driver Qualification Card, or DQC. There are a small number of exemptions, but essentially if you’re driving an HGV / LGV (licence categories C, C1, C1+E or C+E), then Driver CPC is a legal obligation. Professional PCV drivers with equivalent licences are also required to hold a DQC.
Whether the initial DQC was gained as part of the drivers’ initial licence acquisition or by attending Driver CPC training courses, Driver CPC is an ongoing requirement. It is mandated by EU law (Directive 2003/59) and is designed to improve the knowledge and skills of drivers, as well as enhancing safety on our roads. The requirement for Driver CPC has not changed as a result of Brexit and there are no Government plans to do so – the relevant regulations pass into UK law.
We believe that done well, Driver CPC training makes a positive contribution to the road transport industry, supporting the ongoing professional development of the drivers who make such a valuable contribution to our society.
Each DQC is valid for five years from the date of issue. This means that – unlike the 2014 deadline set when Driver CPC was introduced – each driver’s renewal date is unique to them.
All drivers must undertake 35 hours’ periodic training before the end of the five years following the issue date on their DQC. If the training is not undertaken during that time, they will not be permitted to drive professionally until they have completed their 35 hours.
The best way to ensure that a DQC doesn’t lapse is to carry out at least one day’s mandatory periodic training every year.
To check your Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) training record, visit the Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency website.
If a driver is caught driving commercially without their Driver Qualification Card:
When choosing your Driver CPC training provider, look for a wide range of relevant topics for drivers to choose from. This keeps the training useful, interesting and engaging. Look out for interactive elements, such as videos, quizzes and feedback sessions, which will benefit drivers, and add real value to the training. Many drivers report that they prefer tutor-led online classroom environments to self-paced online courses.