From today 25 July 2019 there are new rules for signs on motorways. The Highway Code rule 258 has been updated to provide details about red ‘x’ signs on motorways.
The changes are to reflect amends made to The Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions (TSRGD) 2016 regarding lane closures.
Motorway signals (see ‘Light signals controlling traffic’) are used to warn you of a danger ahead. For example, there may be an incident, fog, a spillage or road workers on the carriageway which you may not immediately be able to see.
Signals situated on the central reservation apply to all lanes. On very busy stretches, signals may be overhead with a separate signal for each lane.
Amber flashing lights. These warn of a hazard ahead. The signal may show a temporary maximum speed limit, lanes that are closed or a message such as ‘Fog’. Adjust your speed and look out for the danger until you pass a signal which is not flashing or one that gives the ‘All clear’ sign and you are sure it is safe to increase your speed.
Red flashing lights. If red lights flash on a signal and a red “X” is showing, you MUST NOT drive in the lane shown as closed beyond the signal. This applies until you pass another signal indicating that the lane is no longer closed, by displaying the word “End” or a speed limit sign and you are sure that it is safe to proceed.
Red flashing lights. If red lights flash on a signal in the central reservation or on the side of the road and lane closed sign is showing, you MUST NOT go beyond the signal in any lane.
It's that time again! Five years on and the Driver CPC training deadline 2019 is approaching. For professional lorry, bus or coach drivers in the UK, the deadline to complete your driver CPC periodic training and maintain your current DQC card is 9th September 2019.
If you haven’t already done so, make sure you’ve completed 35 hours of periodic training by 9 September 2019.
Even though we may or may not be leaving the EU, drivers of lorries and buses will still need a valid CPC to continue to operate in the UK. It is illegal for professional drivers to operate without an up to date Driver Qualification Card (DQC).
Finding a training course
The TMconsultant (training) Consortium has members across the country. You can find them here. Get in touch with a trainer near you!
Do you know your Operator Licence Undertakings? I do get asked this question more nowadays as this information isn’t that easy to find due to operator licence applications being all online. So for anyone looking here they are!
What are Operator Licence Undertakings?
They are set of undertakings which, when issued with your operator licence, you will sign and agree to abide by. Not doing so will probably result in you appearing in front of the traffic commissioner! Depending on your application there may some extra provisions added to the statuary operator licence undertakings.
Undertaking No 1.
The laws relating to the driving and operation of vehicles used under this licence are observed.
Undertaking No 2.
The rules on drivers hours and Tachographs are observed, and proper records are kept and that they are stored, also that records are readily available on request
Undertaking No 3.
To ensure vehicles and trailers are not overloaded
Undertaking No 4.
That all vehicles operator within speed limits
Undertaking No 5.
To ensure drivers promptly report any defects that could prevent the safe operation of the vehicle or trailer and that all defects are recorded in writing.
Undertaking No 6.
To ensure all vehicles and trailers, including hired vehicles and trailers, are kept in a fit and serviceable condition.
Undertaking No 7.
To ensure you are keeping full records for a 15 month period for all drivers reports of defects, safety inspections, routine maintenance and repairs to vehicles.
All these records need to be available on request.
Undertaking No 8.
In respect of each operating centre specified, that the number of vehicles and number trailers kept there will not exceed the maximum number authorised at each operating centre. (Which will be noted on the licence)
Undertaking No 9.
An unauthorised operating centre is not used in any traffic area.
Undertaking No 10.
You will inform the traffic commissioner against yourself, company, business partners, company directors and nominated transport manager/s named on the application.
Undertaking No 11.
That you will ensure that you will notify the traffic commissioner of any changes within 28 days, EG: proposed changes to maintenance arrangements. A change in the financial status of the licence holder (Liquidation etc) or a change to the limited company status or partnership that may affect the licence.
Applying for an operator licence?
If you’re looking to apply for an operator and need help then get in touch with our partners Logistics Support. They can help you through the whole processes.
FORS standard version 5 is here! This is my simple yet comprehensive guide to the main changes, all in one place.
The new FORS Standard VS5 is the fifth iteration and sets out the requirements operators must meet if they wish to become FORS accredited. The revised edition addresses the need for air quality improvements and sets out requirements to help operators mitigate against threats of terrorism. Provision is also made for a broader range of operations and vehicles, including powered two-wheelers, and new requirements for bus and coach operators.
The FORS Standard is updated every two years to reflect the continuous evolution of best practice and FORS’s aim to drive-up safety, environmental, and efficiency standards for all road transport operations.
Version 5 highlights the increasing diversity of commercial fleets and aims to make it more accessible for a broader range of vehicles to achieve accreditation. It contains a more robust commitment to raising environmental standards in operations, recognising the need for better air quality in UK cities via revised requirements and a revised training programme.
Main changes – Bronze
The main changes make FORS more accessible to more vehicles, especially growing fleets of motorcycles and other powered two-wheelers, which contribute to many deliveries on UK roads. Specific load safety requirements set out by vehicle type are included, not only for heavy goods vehicles, vans and passenger carrying vehicles (PCVs), but also powered two-wheelers as well.
PCVs are also given greater credence, with a new requirement at FORS Bronze to ensure accessibility, comfort and safety for all passengers. The requirement must be demonstrated via a passenger safety policy, on vehicle signage and adequate access for all passengers.
A new counter terrorism requirement has been introduced, meaning operators must have a policy and supporting procedures in place at FORS Bronze, which names a Counter Terrorism Champion. Under new Bronze training requirements members must also have completed the current FORS Professional Security and Counter Terrorism eLearning module within the 24 months prior to audit.
Main changes Gold & Silver
An added emphasis on improving environmental operating standards becomes evident with a new requirement at FORS Silver for HGV and van drivers to complete the FORS Professional ‘LoCITY – Time to clean up’ eLearning module within the 24 months prior to accreditation.
In line with the progressive nature of the scheme, FORS has also introduced a requirement at Gold for drivers to have completed either the FORS Professional LoCITY Driving training course, or a FORS Approved environmental awareness course within the past five years. This is in addition to the current requirement to have attended a Safe Urban Driving (SUD), a Van Smart (VS) or a FORS Approved work-related road safety training course, within the five years prior to accreditation.
FORS Silver also includes a commitment to tackle noise pollution – a criteria formally only mandated at FORS Gold. Operators seeking FORS Silver accreditation must complete noise assessments at operating centres and noise sensitive locations in a bid to minimise noise pollution and its impact on local communities.
The new FORS Standard aims to minimise the probability and severity of collisions involving vulnerable road users. FORS Silver accreditation is also fully aligned to meet both the TfL requirements on managing work-related road risk (WRRR) and the new CLOCS Standard v3, due to come into force in January 2019.
Training requirement changes
New training requirements have been introduced across all levels of accreditation for both managers and drivers. These are different for drivers of specific vehicle types so it is best to check the training cards at Annexes 1 (for drivers) and 2 (for managers) of version 5 of the FORS Standard. Transitional provisions are in place for a number of new training requirements. In summary, for managers, and for HGV and van drivers, the new training is as follows:
There are transitional periods for a number of the new training requirements. These are as follows:
N.B Security and Counter Terrorism elearning will count against the new mandatory training requirements for Security and Counter Terrorism as set out in Annex 1 of the FORS Standard. It is now valid for 24 months from the original date undertaken. Therefore the validity will be extended on your training records from 12 months to 24 month
The safety eLearning modules from 14 January 2019 are:
Cycle Safety, Van Smart, Smart Driving and Bridge Smart (due to launch soon). These are valid for 12 months and must be renewed every year. After 14 January 2019, Security and Counter Terrorism will no longer be part of the suite of safety eLearning modules. It has become a separate mandatory eLearning module under Bronze D4 and must be undertaken within the past 24 months.
Summary (annex 5)
Have a look at all the summary of changes in annex 5 below.
The FORS Standard version 5 is now available to download on the FORS website here and becomes effective from Monday 14 January 2019 for both new and existing operators.
TMconsultant provide a complete FORS Help package providing you with all the requisite document templates and support required to pass your initial bronze audit. If you need advice regarding FORS please do just get in touch. Here to share the knowledge!
Nick’s efforts and dedication in achieving this milestone is certainly worth the recognition, as it enhances his personal development and ours and Link2London’s status within the transport and FORS community. After attending all FORS workshops, Nick has successfully completed the FORS Practitioner programme.
What is FORS Practitioner?
FORS Practitioner is a series of ten workshops covering all aspects of fleet management. Designed to assist transport managers in their busy everyday roles, the workshops provide information needed to boost the performance of a transport operation.
The workshops can also help demonstrate professional development (as outlined in requirement D4 Professional Development of the FORS Standard), and help build your Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours, as for each workshop equals 2.5 CPD hours. Find out how to claim your CPD hours here.
FORS Practitioner workshops 1 – 10
Workshop 1 – Developing fleet management policy
Workshop 2 – Managing work related road risk
Workshop 3 – Managing driver fitness and health
Workshop 4 – Managing driver training and development
Workshop 5 – Collision procedures and analysis
Workshop 6 – Safe and efficient fleet management
Workshop 7 – Reducing fuel use and minimising environmental impacts
Workshop 8 – Minimising transport fines and charges
Workshop 9 – Measuring and monitoring road fleet performance
Ever wandered what ‘invalid’ or ‘processing’ means when you check your driver cpc training hours? I get many enquiries regarding issues surrounding driver CPC uploading. There is limited information provided for drivers (and trainers, to a degree) regarding this process. JAUPT do provide a Guide to Recording Driver CPC Periodic Training. However, unless you are a registered training centre, it is unlikely you will find this information easily. Hence this post! Also, as the guide is geared toward the person who will be carrying out the uploads, it therefore contains information not relevant to the driver, which I have filtered out for you below.
As the training status meanings are hot topic, I have listed them first.
What does a driver’s status mean?
Valid – Training is valid and counts towards the drivers Driver CPC entitlement
Invalid– The driver has completed more than 35 hours training in one five year cycle
Cancelled – This training has been cancelled and does not count towards the drivers Driver CPC
entitlement. Training is usually cancelled either because the driver didn’t have the correct entitlement to
take training, or because the training provider has requested the cancellation
Processing – This training has not been validated for one of the following reasons:
The driver didn’t have the correct Driver CPC entitlement to take periodic training – DVSA identify drivers who do not have the correct level of entitlement and inform them hours have not been added to their record. If the driver is unable to supply evidence of Driver CPC entitlement DVSA will cancel this training after a minimum period of 1 month. It is worth noting that incorrectly uploaded driver hours are monitored and frequent re-occurrences will trigger further investigation form the DVSA
The driver has recently completed the initial qualification tests prior to training – this training can be validated once the test passes are shown on our system
DVSA are currently unable to view the driver’s licence entitlements. Therefore DVSA sometimes have to contact the DVLA in order to view the driver’s licence entitlements to assess the validity of the training. If the driver is currently undergoing medical preview with the DVLA, DVSA are often unable to view vocational licence entitlement. This means DVSA are unable to assess the validity of their training until the medical review is complete.
Sometimes there maybe a an issue with the centres payment method and the course is awaiting payment
The training has been incorrectly uploaded against a GB counterpart – the driver holds a non-UK licence with a GB counterpart. Any training uploaded against a GB counterpart can’t be validated as there is no licence entitlement attached to a counterpart
What identity documents should drivers present before I conduct periodic training?
A driver must present one of the following:
a photocard driving licence
a valid passport
a digital tachograph card
a driver qualification card (DQC)
As above, you should make drivers aware that if they do not have the relevant vocational entitlement periodic training cannot contribute towards issue of a DQC.
A driver may also attend training if they present a non-UK driving licence issued by an EU Member State or one of the following countries: Gibraltar, Guernsey, Iceland, Isle of Man, Jersey, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.
Can drivers take more than one periodic training course in a single day?
DVSA would not recommend undertaking two courses of periodic training in one day; we consider this an excessive amount of time for an individual to spend in training and be able to effectively retain the information. Periodic training means regular, ongoing training undertaken consistently throughout a driver’s professional career as part of a programme of continuing professional development. DVSA believe drivers will gain more from periodic training if they design a pre-planned learning programme with a definite objective in mind, ie to improve my professionalism over the next 5 year cycle.
Can somebody attend for periodic training if they don’t drive professionally and don’t have Driver CPC entitlement?
As the training provider it is up to you whether to accept attendees who don’t have Driver CPC entitlement e.g. administrative staff. If individuals attend periodic training and do not have Driver CPC entitlement you must ensure that their training will not be uploaded to the Driver CPC R&E system. You should also make them aware that their periodic training will not count towards issue of a DQC or issue them with a certificate of attendance.
Can somebody attend periodic training if they are currently suspended or disqualified from driving?
A driver can still attend for training which can be uploaded should the driver’s categories ultimately be reinstated, though suspended/disqualified drivers cannot undertake on-road periodic training. The driver should be advised that the licence entitlement may not be shown on our system so the training will not be validated unless the categories are reinstated at a later date. If the vocational categories are not reinstated with their original start dates this training may never be validated. You should make this clear to the driver before they undertake any periodic training.
What advice should be given to attendees?
Below is some advice that you may wish to provide to drivers attending periodic training if it is relevant to them:
A DQC is automatically issued to UK photocard licence holders as soon as 35 hours of periodic training have been uploaded to the driver’s record. This should be received within 20 days of completing the final training. If it is not received after this time the driver should contact the DVSA (GB licences) or DVA (NI licences).
A DQC can only be issued to the licence address currently held by DVLA at the time when it is triggered; it is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that their address is up to date with the DVLA before all 35 hours of training are completed. If the DQC is sent to a previous licence address the driver will have to pay £25 for another card to be issued. If the non-receipt of a DQC is not reported to the DVSA/DVA within 3 months, the driver will need to pay £25 for another card to be issued, regardless of the circumstances.
If the driver holds a paper driving licence in order for a DQC to be issued they will need to exchange this for a photocard licence.
Periodic training should be uploaded to the driver’s records directly, by the training provider, within 5 working days. It is the driver’s responsibility to monitor their own hours on the Driver CPC Online Driver Enquiry (ODE) service at www.gov.uk/check-your-driver-cpc-periodic-training-hours. If the driver has already completed 35 hours of training within their current 5 year cycle any further training taken and uploaded is invalid. Northern Irish drivers are currently unable to use ODE so they should contact the DVA to check their recorded periodic training hours.
Periodic training expires after 5 years; if all 35 hours are not completed within 5 years of the earliest training date, those hours which fall out of the rolling five-year period will no longer count towards the issue of any subsequent DQC.
If the driver holds a non-UK driving licence and wishes to obtain a UK DQC they will need to either: Exchange to a UK driving licence, and ask you, as their training provider, to upload the training retrospectively Or, if they want to retain their foreign licence, they will need to apply for their DQC via a DQC1 application form on completion of 35 hours training.
If a driver presents for training with a GB driving licence and a non-UK DQC they should be advised to send their DQC to the DVSA for exchange.
If a driver presents for training with a NI driving licence and a non-UK DQC they should be advised to send their DQC to the DVA for exchange, enabling the periodic training hours to be validated upon upload.
Online Driver Enquiry (ODE)
Periodic training centres should encourage drivers to register for the ODE service which can be
When a driver has accessed the ODE service to check how many periodic training hours they have accrued
they can generate a temporary password, valid for 21 days, to pass to a 3
rd party to allow access to their periodic training details.
The ODE facility enables drivers to check the amount of periodic training recorded for them. Drivers are
advised to check ODE after five working days of completing periodic training to ensure that it has been
correctly uploaded by their training provider.
This facility can only be used by drivers with a full British driving licence. A driver can only register to use this service when periodic training has been uploaded for them.
The first time a driver uses the system they must click on ‘Register (drivers only)’ which can be found on the bottom left of the screen. The driver will then need to enter their driving licence number, postcode and fill in the captcha code.
A message will then appear informing the driver that a password has been posted out to their address which they will receive within 10 days. The registration password letter will be dispatched to the address currently held by the DVLA.
Once the driver has a password they can select ‘Start now’ which will bring up the login screen. They will then be prompted to enter their driving licence number and password, and to fill in a code. This service is available 24 hours a day, every day.
If they have any problems using this service they can contact DVSA’s customer support team on 0300 200 1122. This line is open Monday to Friday 8.00am to 12.00pm.
Northern Ireland licence holders must contact the DVA to check their hours if they want written confirmation. ODE is not available to NI licence holders as the licensing authority (DVA) is not linked to this system.
Recording Driver CPC Periodic Training
To record a driver’s training hours on DVSA’s R&E system drivers must provide their driving licence number. Please note it remains the trainer’s responsibility to ensure that the driver genuinely holds the driving licence number presented on the day; each approved training body should have its own procedures in place to guarantee this.
You must upload the training records to the CPC R&E system within five working days of the course completion date; drivers cannot have training uploaded twice for the same date. The CPC R&E (Recording & Evidencing) system is the central training record database for UK driving licence holders and is managed by DVSA.
Training must be uploaded promptly and accurately to prevent any delay in the driver receiving their DQC. As all professional bus, coach and lorry drivers must carry their DQC with them at all times when they are working any delay can have a serious impact.
You must keep full, accurate records of all periodic training conducted for audit purposes. All information should be retained securely in line with the Data Protection Act 1998.
We consider it best practice for centres to regularly review uploads using the ‘View training centre history’ facility to ensure all drivers have been uploaded correctly.
You should not upload periodic training until the driver has completed the full course; if the driver had to leave early the upload would have to be cancelled after the event. Only those drivers who complete the course in its entirety can be uploaded
If you have any difficulties with the CPC R&E system, please contact the CPC R&E section at the DVSA.
Recording Periodic Training for Non-UK Licence Holders
When non-UK licence holders attend periodic training in the UK you are required to complete the ‘Non-UK Licence Upload Template’. This can be found on gov.uk. You must complete one template per course attended. This template should be e-mailed to email@example.com within five working days of the course completion date.
On receipt of the e-mail a member of staff will call you to take the upload fee via credit/debit card; normal upload fees apply. You must make sure you include a contact name, email address and preferred contact number, and ensure that your named contact has access to all details of the card necessary for payment.
DVSA cannot take payment for these uploads via prefunded account and the training cannot be viewed using the online training centre history. You should maintain your own centre’s records of periodic training undertaken by non-UK driving licence holders in line with your normal procedures. These records will be subject to the usual audits.
On completion of 35 hours training the driver will need to apply for a DQC using a DQC1 application form if they want to retain their foreign licence. If they decide to exchange to a UK driving licence, they may contact you at a later date to upload this training retrospectively. You must contact the DVSA to claim back your original upload fee and report the late upload of the training to the CPC R&E system.
TMconsultant is a Driver CPC consortium providing the opportunity for those who would like to deliver Driver CPC training but would prefer not to set up a training centre in their own right. By becoming a member of our consortium you can teach Periodic Driver CPC training with all the benefits of being a fully registered training centre with JAUPT, operating under the umbrella of TMconsultant.
If you would like any information about joining our consortium please do get in touch, here to share the knowledge!
The DVSA have moved all operator applications online, which is a great thing. However, getting quick and easy access the guidance publications is almost impossible currently. Specifically for transport managers and the TM1G doc, checking how many hours you are required to work via the .gov website will leave you somewhat frustrated. The great news is you can read the information required below taken from the TM1G document!
TM1G statutory guidelines for the number of hours transport managers should work
The statutory guidance documents give a broad guideline as to what might be expected in terms of hours worked by a transport manager relative to the maximum number of vehicles authorised for a licence. Please note that this is a starting point only. The traffic commissioners will need to be satisfied that you are capable of exercising continuous and effective management of the transport operation (see below) and will consider each case on its own facts and its own merits.
Proposed Hours (per week)
2 or less
3 to 5
6 to 10
11 to 14
15 to 29
30 to 50
Full Time and additional assistance required
Additional hours may be required for trailers.
Please give full details of the hours you will work in the relevant boxes on the form. If you will not be devoting the amount of time to the relevant licence(s) as shown in the table above, you should provide the traffic commissioner with written explanation as to how you will carry out all your responsibilities effectively in the time allocated.
Your explanation should include how you will ensure the operation and management of the following;
Drivers administration – including the checking of drivers’ licences and driver CPC qualifications (DQC), ensuring that the retention of drivers hours records (no less than 12 months) and working time records (no less than 24 months) and both are made available upon request;
Drivers management – ensuring compliance with the driving hours rules (EU or Domestic Hours rules); that drivers record their duty, driving time and rest breaks; to download and store digital tachograph unit data (at least every 90 days) and from the drivers’ smart cards (at least every 28 days); ensuring that the following records are retained – drivers’ hours, Working Time Directive (WTD), and that they are available to be produced during the relevant period; to ensure that drivers are adequately trained and competent to operate relevant vehicles and equipment.
Drivers operations – ensuring drivers are completing and returning their driver defect reporting sheets and that defects are recorded correctly and cross checked, and that drivers and mobile workers take adequate breaks and appropriate periods of daily and weekly rest;
Vehicle administration – including ensuring that vehicle maintenance records to be retained for a period of no less than 15 months, ensuring that vehicles are specified as required and that operator licence discs are current and displayed correctly; ensuring safe loading with appropriate indicators fitted, that tachograph calibrations are up to date and displayed, that there are up to date insurance certificates; a suitable maintenance planner is complete and displayed with preventative maintenance inspection dates at least 6 months in advance, to include the Annual Test and other testing or calibration dates;
Vehicle management – ensuring that vehicles and trailers are kept in a fit and roadworthy condition, that defects are either recorded and repaired promptly and where not roadworthy are taken out of service; to make vehicles and towed equipment available for safety inspections, service, repair and statutory testing at the appropriate times and within the notified O-licence maintenance intervals; to liaise with maintenance contractors, manufacturers, hire companies as might be appropriate.
Compliance systems – including details of training, management, monitoring and auditing showing the role you play including and what authority you have for instance to review any shortcomings such as prohibitions and/or annual test failures. How you ensure that relevant changes are notified in accordance with operator licence requirements.
Licence administration – ensuring that the traffic commissioner is made aware of any relevant matters within 28 days including convictions and prosecutions of the transport manager(s) or drivers and also of my own resignation should I leave the employment of the operator.
The Senior Traffic Commissioner has also identified some general indicators as to effective transport management which you should comment on:
Knowledge and skills – which require more than just the formal qualification;
Impact – where the individual CPC holder is recognised as a key person within the organisation so that s/he can influence decisions relevant to compliance and authority to deal with external contractors. Their position should reflect the professional and personal responsibility vested in the individual;
Decision making – where the individual CPC holder is sufficiently close to drivers to be able to influence their behaviours and senior enough to influence the deployment of resources and to inform the decisions of the owner/directors/partners.
The above is not an exhaustive list. You should also include any further information which is relevant to the operation under your control. The traffic commissioner may also require information about the location of the operating centres for which you have responsibility, and whether travelling time will have an impact on your ability to provide effective management. You should therefore also be ready to supply a breakdown of your working week, including details of visits to the operating centres and of travelling time, as this may be requested.