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Rental industry needs clarity on Driver CPC requirements

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The BVRLA has urged the Department for Transport to officially confirm that it will relax the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) requirements for rental and leasing staff.

The government is consulting with industry on widening the scope of Driver CPC exemptions. Although the DfT and the transport minister have put forward proposals for some exemptions for the rental and leasing sector, there has been no firm statement. With just a few weeks to go until the Driver CPC regime is introduced, the BVRLA says its members need clarity.

The association has called on the DfT to relax the rules to ensure that most employees driving minibuses or commercial vehicles between branches, collecting or delivering them or taking them to roadworthiness tests will not have to hold a Driver CPC.

The exemptions proposed by the DfT would cover drivers travelling within 50 kilometres of their base without passengers or goods, not operating for hire and reward, and driving as an incidental part of their job. The BVRLA has asked the Department to increase the distance restriction to give firms greater flexibility.

If the minister was to approve the exemptions, it is unlikely that the required legislative changes will be made before the Driver CPC becomes mandatory for minibus drivers in September. The BVRLA has sought assurances that enforcement action will not be taken against rental and leasing company employees who have not completed the required training. So far, the DfT has only been able to assure the association that any enforcement would be ‘targeted and proportionate’ and would take the proposed exemptions ‘into account’.

BVRLA Chief Executive, Gerry Keaney, said: "We understand that the Department is doing it all can to fast-track the changes, but with only weeks before the legislation comes into force, its paramount that the Department clears up this uncertainty.

“Approving the changes would be a victory for common sense and would ensure that the rental industry in particular can continue to provide consumers and businesses with cost-effective, convenient access to minibuses and commercial vehicles up and down the country.” 

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