Freight Transport Association talks Driver CPC

Driver CPC needs to be improved, but we should be careful what we wish for in changes arising from the Driver Training Directive, according to the Freight Transport Association (FTA). Adding additional constraints could prevent responsible, professional vehicle operators from training drivers in the knowledge and skills they need to do their job effectively, claims the FTA. The comments came in the Association’s response to the Driving Standards Agency’s consultation on the Driver Training Directive as it prepares to submit its own thoughts on the regime on the behalf of the UK government.
FTA’s Head of Road Freight and Enforcement Policy, James Firth, said, ‘Driver CPC was brought in to raise standards across the industry, but many responsible vehicle operators were already developing their drivers’ knowledge and skills before the European Directive came along. When it came into force these operators had to make their existing high quality training conform to the administrative requirements of Brussels. The UK government was right to implement a flexible interpretation of the requirements when Driver CPC started back in 2008, but it means that any changes to the Directive which the Commission may be planning will have a direct impact on training courses on the ground.’
FTA also warned against allowing Brussels to dictate exactly what a driver should be trained in. Firth said, ‘The problem with one-size-fits-all is it usually becomes one-size-fits nobody very well. If the specific training content is defined by politicians – either in Brussels or Westminster – we run the risk of every driver investing time and money on redundant training. For instance a driver in the retail sector should not be forcibly required to be trained in loading and securing aggregates. There is certainly a challenge still in engaging drivers fully with DCPC, but insisting upon irrelevant training is a sure-fire way to alienate them further.’

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McGill’s training milestone

McGill’s Buses has recently celebrated a milestone achievement in its training, with the 100th driver receiving the Modern Apprenticeship in Passenger Carrying Vehicles at Level 2 certificate. McGill’s Head of Service Delivery, Colin Napier, said, ‘McGill’s has enjoyed steady passenger growth over the last year across our Renfrewshire network, with more than half a million passenger journeys with us every week. I believe that the travelling public is choosing McGill’s over other operators largely as a result of the high level of customer service that our drivers deliver every day. The course, provided by locally-based Orion People Solutions Limited, supplements our in house training programme, and reinforces the importance of delivering professional customer service, helping passengers with special needs and driving safely and efficiently. I am delighted to share in the success of this first batch of drivers and look forward to rolling it out across all depots in the near future.’