Driver CPC: Do You Know What You’re Getting?

empty CPC classroom

What is Driver CPC?

Let’s start with the basics (which you’ll already know). “Driver CPC“, aka “DCPC“, “CPC“, “Periodic Training” or, in some instances, “that [insert chosen combination of expletives] we’ve got to do on top of everything else” is the mandatory qualification required of all professional drivers of heavy goods and passenger carrying vehicles.


A question that we get asked a lot, and I mean a lot, is: What does it actually cover?


Given that Driver CPC has been around for over 10 years now, you would hope that we would all know the answer. It would appear not.


One explanation for this, is that it can cover almost anything. If the material has been approved by the Joint Approvals Unit for Periodic Training (JAUPT), it could look at anything from Safe & Efficient Driving to Anti-Terrorism training.


To help you make sense of it all, this article will give you an overview of what’s covered in the most popular modules that we deliver. There’s quite a few. Feel free to use the links below to skip to any you’re particularly interested in.



Drivers’ Hours

This is a common one. Mainly because the content covered here will apply to anyone that drives a lorry, bus or coach for work.


There are a few different sets of rules governing Drivers’ Hours: EC, GB Domestic and AETR rules. This module looks at all of these and explains:


  • Drivers’ responsibilities under the regulations
  • Driving hours limits
  • Working time limits
  • Limits for breaks and rest periods
  • Details of how breaks and rest periods may be organised
  • The circumstances under which these rules apply
  • Things to watch out for so you can avoid picking up infringements


Something worth knowing: all our CPC trainers are HGV and/or PCV licence holders, with practical experience of the job. They know how these rules work and the tricks you can use to make your day that much easier.


Digital Tachographs (Theory)

Despite some negative media coverage and conversation regarding the industry, drivers making return to driving, having taken a number of years out, are not so rare as you might think. As digital tachograph units are only mandatory for vehicles registered from 2006 onwards, these people may have only ever used wax discs.


Equally, there will be plenty of current drivers out there that’ll have a meltdown if you ask them to do a manual printout. This stuff is important, however. We cannot ignore it.


This module looks at:


  • The function and purpose of a digital tachograph
  • The different types of Vehicle Units (VUs)
  • An overview of the legislative requirements in relation to digital tachographs
  • Types of digital tachograph cards
  • An overview of drivers’ responsibilities


Vehicle Defect Checks & Reporting

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Every driver should be conducting pre-use checks on their vehicle. But, that shouldn’t just be a box-ticking exercise.


This module will take you through:


  • The legal and practical requirements regarding its safety and that of the load
  • An introduction to present legislation
  • What to check
  • How to check it
  • Recording checks
  • Systems for reporting any defects found
  • The impact of defects on the driver and/or operator
  • An overview of OCRS


Good to know: This module deals with both HGV and PCV vehicle checks. As with most of our modules, it can be allocated to an HGV or PCV licence or both.


Safe Manual Handling

Unless you’re one of the lucky few, manual handling is likely to be part of any professional driver’s job. This could be lifting passengers’ suitcases into the storage area, using a pump-truck to shift a pallet, rolling out a tanker’s hose or a whole load of things in between!


Whatever the requirements of their job, this module seeks to reduce the risk of driver injury by demonstrating the correct handling techniques to avoid strains and muscle damage for a wide range of scenarios.


In this module, you will cover:


  • Awareness of current legislation
  • Awareness of the problems associated with poor lifting and handling techniques
  • A look at the function and common complaints of the back
  • Other injury risks
  • Demonstrations of good manual handling techniques
  • Methods for assessing lifts
  • Working at height
  • PPE


Vehicle Safe Loading

Key to protecting ourselves and others when we are out on the road is loading our vehicle in a safe manner. But just how should we be doing this?


There are a myriad of techniques available for securing a load – which one should you choose? It’s an important decision as getting it wrong could land you with points on your licence and a hole in your pocket.


This module will cover:


  • Current legislation surrounding vehicle loading
  • Weight distribution
  • Payloads
  • Methods of securing loads
  • Hazards of working at height & safety measures
  • Drivers’ responsibilities
  • Operators responsibilities
  • Route considerations & risk assessments
  • Bridge strikes


Safe & Efficient Driving

The ability to drive a vehicle efficiently is a definite plus in any employer’s eyes. With margins in logistics and haulage as tight as they are, a fleet’s fuel efficiency can be the difference between a company making it or not.


Good to know: Following the delivery of this module, our clients have seen anything up to an 11% increase in their drivers’ fuel efficiency.


We are also able to offer driver assessments to address specific behaviours such as speeding, damage or aggressive driving.


This module is classroom-based but we can also offer practical training to further enhance the learning outcomes. The classroom module will cover:


  • An awareness of the environmental impact of transport operations
  • Efficiency – the driver’s contribution
  • Consideration of vulnerable road users
  • The importance of forward planning and route selection
  • The benefits derived from improved efficiency
  • Factors affecting fuel efficiency
  • Examples of inefficient driving
  • The impact of technological advances


Ultimately the aim of this module is to increase a driver’s awareness of the methods and benefits of increasing fuel efficiency and actions they can take to minimise risk.


Customer Care

The assumption is often that the “customer” is just the end user – the person buying the goods or services that are being delivered. This module challenges that assumption and highlights the importance of and the benefits that can be derived from good customer care, taking into account both internal and external stakeholders.


As the primary point of contact in many scenarios, the ability of the driver to provide good customer care can have a significant impact on a company’s reputation. This can have knock-on consequences in both a positive and a negative way.


Covered in this module is:


  • Understanding who the customer is
  • The driver’s responsibility as the face of the company
  • Providing drivers with a toolkit for providing excellent customer care
  • Understanding the impact of poor customer care
  • The importance of communication
  • Dealing with complaints
  • 10 rules for customer service


Driver Compliance

Driver compliance is key to the ongoing operation of any logistics business. Compliance requires an understanding of what should (or shouldn’t) be done and how. This module aims to increase drivers’ awareness of their general responsibilities in order that they can remain compliant.


Content in this module includes an overview of the following:


  • An awareness of present legislation
  • Vulnerable road user awareness
  • Speed limits
  • Vehicle loading & security – the driver’s responsibilities
  • Vehicle defect checking & reporting
  • Drivers’ hours & working time record keeping
  • Incident reporting including RIDDOR
  • Trailers (coupling & uncoupling)


Driver Wellbeing

The UK loses approximately 130 million working days to sickness every year. That equates, on average, to around 2.5 days per employee every year. More importantly, the reasons given for 70% of these sickness days are linked to avoidable problems such as sprains and strains, cardiovascular issues and general ill-health etc.


This module aims to educate drivers as to actions they can take to minimise the risk of ill-health, both physical and mental, and includes:


  • The importance of self-care
  • Legislation surrounding drivers’ health and vehicle use
  • Substance abuse (legal and illegal)
  • Enforcement action
  • The signs and symptoms of health issues affecting driving licences
  • The requirements for reporting medical conditions
  • Strategies for improving health and fitness
  • Diet & exercise
  • Stress, fatigue & dehydration


Managing Conflict & Difficult Situations

Being on the front line of a company’s operation, drivers will naturally find themselves in situations involving conflict. The majority of the time they are not necessarily responsible for that conflict, but it’s important that they have the know-how to be able to deal with such situations.


This module looks at:


  • Strategies to deal with potential conflict
  • An awareness of present legislation
  • The detrimental effects of internal conflict
  • The legal repercussions of physical intervention
  • Physical and non-physical violence – what is it?
  • Bullying
  • The SAFER model
  • Behavioural effects of conflict
  • Mental illness


Basic First Aid

It’s a fact. The roads can be a dangerous place for all road users. Add to the mix the handling of heavy and bulky items; the operation of mechanical equipment and vehicles up to 44tonnes plus a host of other hazards, you soon realise the chances of a driver encountering someone requiring medical attention can be quite high.


With many injuries and conditions, early treatment can make a big difference to the patient’s outcome – potentially the difference between life and death. This module doesn’t train drivers in how to treat medical conditions but to:


  • Understand the concept of first aid
  • Build an understanding of the role of emergency cover for first aid
  • Recognise the limitations of this training
  • Assessing an incident
  • Recognising the most common injuries
  • Identify any dangers
  • Be familiar with the contents of a first aid kit and its function
  • The recovery position
  • Principles of CPR


ADR Awareness

As an employer, you have a legal duty to provide ongoing training to your employees to ensure their safety and welfare at work. This can relate to things such as manual handling, operating pieces of equipment but also includes the handling of hazardous goods or substances.


Some surprising items can be classed as hazardous goods including batteries, fertilisers, paints, food flavourings and much more. Whether the products you handle fall within scope of the ADR regulations or not, you should be providing training to your employees that are involved with the handling, storage or transportation of them.


Good to know: Our ADR awareness courses are eligible for Driver CPC hours but they, along with all our CPC courses, can be delivered to non-drivers or drivers that do not require Driver CPC.


The ADR awareness module looks at:


  • Operators responsibilities in relation to handling hazardous goods
  • Current legislation and regulation
  • Storage of hazardous goods
  • Packaging, labelling and loading of hazardous products
  • Markings and consignment documentation
  • Security & terrorism
  • Classifications & classes
  • Excepted, limited and in-scope quantities
  • Spillages


Digital Tachographs (Practical)

If you’re driving an HGV manufactured on in or after 2006, you’ll need to know how to use a digital tachograph card and the different types of Vehicle Units (VUs). Even if you’re wagon is older, it may still be fitted with a digital VU.


Mistakes with the operation of digital tachographs can lead to drivers incurring infringements. This can have a direct financial impact, both on the driver and operator. This module seeks to prevent this happening, protecting your wallet and your O’licence.


It covers:


  • Current legislation
  • How digital tachographs operate
  • The driver’s responsibilities
  • Controls of the VU
  • The use of digital tachographs
  • Manual entries
  • Pictograms
  • Understanding UTC in relation to the local time zone
  • Understanding when printouts are required
  • Replacement cards


Want more like this?

Get the latest news updates plus more direct to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.