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Provide Driver CPC part 3a (off-road exercises) tests for HGV and bus drivers

Get approved to carry out Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) part 3a (off-road exercises) tests and the rules you must follow.

Contents

 

  • Eligibility
  • Decide how you want to operate
  • Apply for approval
  • What happens after you’ve applied
  • When you’re approved
  • Appeal a decision about your authorisation

Driving tests are usually provided by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). The law is changing from 15 November 2021 to allow some organisations to provide Driver CPC part 3a (off-road exercises) tests for heavy goods vehicle (HGV) and bus drivers.

 

This test includes:

  • an ‘S’ shaped reverse into a bay
  • showing the uncoupling and recoupling procedure if you’re taking a test with a trailer

 

If you get your organisation approved:

  • you can provide Driver CPC part 3a tests for any eligible drivers whenever you want to (the tests must be done in adequate light - this could be from floodlights)
  • you can charge up to £40 for tests you provide
  • you can be advertised as a test provider on the GOV.UK website if you want to

 

You’ll be approved for 4 years. You’ll need to get reapproved before your authorisation runs out.

There’s a different process to get approved to provide Driver CPC part 4 (practical demonstration) tests.

Eligibility

 

You can apply if you’re:

  • a large goods vehicle (LGV) or passenger carrying vehicle (PCV) training organisation
  • bus or coach company with a driver training centre
  • haulage company with a driver training centre
  • an LGV or PCV industry training association
  • a Driver CPC periodic training centre

 

You must expect to carry out at least 40 Driver CPC part 3a tests per assessor each year.

 

You must:

  • directly employ the people you want to be assessors
  • have a suitable site

 

Assessor eligibility

 

The people you want to be assessors must:

  • have had a UK car driving licence (or one from the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) for at least 3 years
  • have no more than 5 penalty points on their licence
  • be a ‘fit and proper’ person
  • have an employment contract with your organisation
  • have the same category of driving licence for any test you want them to do

 

They must have had both:

  • a category C, C1, D or D1 licence for at least 3 years
  • towing entitlement (+E) for at least 12 months (after upgrading their licence) if you want them to do trailer tests

 

Working for more than one organisation

 

An assessor can work for more than one organisation. However, they must have an employment contract with each organisation they carry out tests for.

 

Rules for the sites you want to use

 

Your site must have:

  • clear entry and exit points
  • suitable insurance

 

You must have an off-road area with a level hardstanding surface (such as concrete, tarmac or block paving) that is either:

  • 42 metres (m) by 11m (if you only want to test vehicles shorter than 12m in length)
  • 66m by 11m (if you want to test vehicles of any size)

 

It must have an extra 1m buffer zone on all 4 sides (this is to allow for vehicle overhang and the safe conduct of the test).

You cannot use a site with a gravel surface.

Depending on where your site is, you might be able to get funding to help with the cost of making changes to your site so it can be used. Find out how to get help and support for your business.

 

Mark out your off-road area and get equipment

 

You need to mark out your off-road area using clearly visible line marking paint.

 

You also need:

  • 7 cones, measuring 50cm in height and with a 30cm base
  • 3 poles measuring 1.5m to 1.8m in height - they have to be striped red and white
  • a coloured barrier that’s about 1.5m high and 5m wide to put at the end of the yellow stopping area to simulate a loading bay (for category C1, C1E, C and CE tests only)

 

Provide Driver CPC part 3a (off-road exercises) tests for HGV and bus drivers
The barrier behind the yellow stopping area which simulates reversing up to a loading platform.

 

The barrier behind the yellow stopping area, which simulates reversing up to a loading platform.

 

Download the instructions which show:

  • what needs to be painted
  • where the cones and poles need to be positioned depending on the vehicle’s length

 

Off-road area setup instructions

PDF, 253KB, 4 pages

 

Your application could be delayed if you have not painted your off-road area when you apply.

Decide how you want to operate

 

You need to decide:

  • which of your sites you’d like to provide tests at
  • which driving licence categories you want to be able to provide tests for
  • how many assessors you want to have approved (each assessor must carry out at least 40 Driver CPC part 3a tests each year, and they cannot test someone they’ve personally trained)
  • how much you’ll charge for tests you provide (you can charge up to £40)
  • what your terms and conditions will be for your customers - this should include your approach to short notice cancellations and what you expect your customers to do to help stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • how you’ll tell your customers what you’re doing with their personal data

 

You must be registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and pay an annual data protection fee because you’re processing personal data.

 

Driving licence categories you want to provide tests for

 

You can apply for approval to provide tests for these categories:

  • medium-sized lorries (C1)
  • medium-sized lorries towing a trailer (C1E)
  • large rigid lorries (C)
  • large articulated lorries (CE)
  • minibuses (D1)
  • minibuses towing a trailer (D1E)
  • buses or coaches (D)
  • buses or coaches towing a trailer (DE)

 

Your assessors must have the same category of driving licence themselves for any test they’re carrying out. This means you cannot apply for a category your assessors do not have on their driving licence.


Apply for approval

 

You need to fill in separate online applications to get:

  • your organisation approved
  • each of your sites approved
  • each of your assessors approved

 

You can complete all the applications at the same time - you do not need to wait for each one to be approved before filling in the next one.

 

What it costs

 

There are currently no fees to apply.

 

Apply to get your organisation approved

 

Before you start, you need:

  • your DVSA business ID (if you have one)
  • the full names of who you want to appoint as assessors

 

You need to accept the Driver CPC part 3a assessor terms and conditions (PDF, 1.33MB, 17 pages) when you fill in the form.

 

Apply to get your organisation approved

 

Apply to get your sites approved

 

You can get one more than one site approved. Fill in a separate application for each site.

 

Before you start, you need:

  • your DVSA business ID (if you have one)
  • to know vehicle categories you’re currently approved to test on your site (if you’re already approved to host DVSA tests)
  • your proposed site’s full address
  • what3words address covering any part of your proposed manoeuvring area (what3words is a service that has divided the world into 3m squares and gives each square a unique combination of 3 words)

 

Apply to get a site approved

 

Apply to get your assessors approved

 

You can get one more than one assessor approved. Fill in a separate application for each assessor.

 

Before you start, you need:

  • your DVSA business ID (if you have one)
  • your trainer booker ID (if you have one)

 

For each assessor, you will need their:

  • full name
  • email address
  • phone number
  • driving licence number

 

You will also need to know:

  • how many penalty points they have on their driving licence (they must have no more than 5)
  • how long they’ve had each category on their licence (1 year or less, 2 years or less, 3 years or less, or more than 3 years)
  • how long they’ve provided driver training for in each category on their licence (either less than a year or more than a year)
  • which professional driver training registers they’re members of (if any)

 

You need to accept the Driver CPC part 3a assessor terms and conditions (PDF, 1.33MB, 17 pages) when you fill in this form.

 

Apply to get an assessor approved

 

Help with your application

 

Contact DVSA to get help with any of the application forms.

 

Driver CPC part 3a assessor applications


[email protected]


What happens after you’ve applied

 

DVSA aims to process your applications within 10 working days.

DVSA will need to check if your site is suitable before your application is approved.

 

This might involve DVSA:

  • reviewing and approving your site’s details if it’s currently approved for hosting DVSA tests
  • arranging a video call with you, so they can inspect the site virtually
  • arranging a site visit with you, so they can inspect the site in person

 

DVSA will email you to tell you its decision.

If your application is refused, DVSA will explain why. You can appeal to DVSA if you disagree with the decision.


When you’re approved

 

When you’re approved you will need to:

  • get your assessors to take the assessor training and pass the assessment
  • record the details of tests you’ll be carrying out, send the results to DVSA and issue pass certificates
  • report changes in your assessors’ circumstances to DVSA

 

DVSA will also regularly check that you’re following the correct standards.

 

Take the assessor training and pass the assessment

 

Each assessor needs to complete an online training course and assessment.

DVSA will send the details to your assessors when your application has been approved.

The online training course and assessment is free.

 

Record details of the tests you’ll carry out

 

You have to record the details of all the Driver CPC part 3a tests your organisation carries out. You have to do this before the test is carried out.

 

You have to record details of:

  • new tests
  • changes to tests
  • cancelled tests

 

There’s no fee to do this.

DVSA will send you details about how to record the details and send the test results after your assessors have completed their training.

 

You’ll also get information about how to:

  • order pass certificates (there’s no fee for these)
  • fill in the pass certificates

 

Report changes in your assessors’ circumstances

 

You must tell DVSA straight away if one of your assessors gets a caution or conviction. This includes:

  • getting a binding over order (being ‘bound over’)
  • any motoring or non-motoring offence, including penalty points

 

If an assessor has not tested for 6 months

 

Email DVSA when an assessor has not carried out any tests during the last 6 months.

The assessor cannot carry out any more tests until DVSA tells you they can test again.

 

Checking your standards

 

DVSA will carry out quality checks throughout the year. DVSA will visit your site and look at:

  • your records and processes
  • your assessors’ standards (this includes watching tests being carried out)

 

DVSA examiners will usually contact you to arrange a date and time to visit the site, but they can also visit you without giving you notice.

DVSA can remove your permission to carry out Driver CPC part 3a tests if you’re not testing to the proper standards.

You can appeal if DVSA intends to remove your authorisation.


Appeal a decision about your authorisation

 

There is no legal right of appeal, but you can ask DVSA’s Chief Driving Examiner to independently review the case.

 

Driver CPC part 3a assessor appeals
 

[email protected]

 

Driver CPC Part 3a Assessor Appeals
Chief Driving Examiner
Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency
The Axis Building
112 Upper Parliament Street
Nottingham
NG1 6LP


From: Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency


Published 5 November 2021

Last updated 12 November 2021

 

Added information about the fee that you can charge for providing Driver CPC part 3a tests.

 

Added links to the application forms, and added an email address where you can get help with your applications.

 

First published.

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