The UK government first introduced the Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) in 2008 to comply with the European Union regulations. At first, it affected only coach and bus drivers. However, it included lorry drivers after a year. Despite having some exceptions, drivers of coaches, buses, and lorries need the CPC to do their job.
Some exceptions include drivers transporting goods and passengers for personal use. Other exceptions include drivers going to or from appointments or doing rescue missions. After getting the CPC, you have to keep it up to date by undertaking periodic training every five years. This training should equal 35 hours. Some of the modules in this training include enhancing fuel economy, applying professional driving standards, and safe vehicle loading.
Module I and II
Certificate of Professional Competence comes in four modules. You have to take a theory test including modules one and two immediately after getting a provisional licence. Hazard perception is the next step. Passing the two tests requires getting 85 and 67 questions correct out of 100. Although you can do them separately, you can’t exceed two years apart before doing the third module. Additionally, you can do these tests on one day, but it requires booking them separately.
Testing your driving ability is the third part during training to get your driver CPC licence. After passing the two tests, the driving part lasts about 90 minutes. It includes questions regarding practical driving, off-road exercises, and vehicle safety. For those driving a trailer, the test consists of learning coupling and recoupling procedures and a demonstration of reversing in the parking lot. Passing this test requires not making more than 15 driving mistakes or any dangerous incident.
Completing the training involves taking another practical test. This involves observing by an instructor while you do various tasks such as assessment of emergency circumstances, checking vehicle safety, and safe loading. The test has five modules, with each section carrying 20 points. Getting 15 questions correct in each module allows getting a score of 85 out of 100 to pass the test.
Preparation for CPC
The process of taking CPC training seems daunting at first. However, adequate planning will make passing all the tests seamless. Understanding that becoming a professional driver requires getting CPC is enough inspiration to become determined on passing. So, you have to go the extra mile to increase your chances of passing. This is very important to avoid wasting time and money.
Look out for more cars ahead.
Novice drivers usually face the problem of forgetting to look ahead, although some experienced drivers face it too. There’s a chance of becoming used to looking at only one or two vehicles ahead while driving a large vehicle.
Looking further ahead is very important if you have to stop abruptly since the car takes more time to slow down. Looking at more than five cars ahead should be the gauge to make you slow down. Relying on brake lights to signal to vehicles ahead might not be effective sometimes.
Make yourself comfortable
Your comfort is essential when taking the CPC test . Being relaxed and feeling good makes you less nervous behind the wheel. Dress for the occasion to be more comfortable. Your shirt and tie are not necessary this time. Dressing in less formal clothing makes you relaxed since these are usually your work clothing.
Prepare your paperwork
Make sure to have the appropriate paperwork handy before you set off to the testing centre. You have to carry your driving licence, and it should be valid. Check that you have the licence to avoid having to panic when asked to present it. Additionally, prepare to move with any other paperwork that might be required.
Test drive on your own
Before going for the practical tests, it is a good idea to practice driving on your own. Doing this will allow you to get used to getting behind the wheel and puts your mind in the right frame. Practising before the test eliminates chances of making silly errors and makes you more aware of what you’re getting into.
However, ensure not to go overboard with your driving practice. Doing this for hours is likely to make you tired before your test. And, fatigue will significantly affect your ability to drive during the test. Simple practice lasting about 30 to 40 minutes is ideal for preparing you to pass your driving test with flying colours.
Professional drivers always put safety at the back of their minds while on the road. And, getting your CPC plays a significant role in ensuring this. Understanding your responsibilities on the road requires getting your CPC and keeping it valid and up to date.