New lorry drivers will need to pass a new DSA driving test following the launch of a new qualification by the Driving Standards Agency (DSA).

The Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) launches on the 10th September 2009 and will need to be obtained by new lorry drivers in addition to them holding the relevant driving licence for a lorry.

The exams include a new theory test that check and enhance drivers’ understanding. There’s also a new practical test which requires trainee lorry drivers to demonstrate their knowledge of vehicle safety and security.

Rosemary Thew, The Chief Executive of the Driving Standards Agency said: “The new Driver CPC qualification has been developed to raise and maintain the standards of lorry, bus and coach drivers”.

Thew continued, “Lorry driving is a profession with a high level of responsibility. We are confident that the new qualification will help to reduce the human and financial costs of road accidents in the UK”.

In a further move, all lorry drivers, irrespective of experience, will need to complete 35 hours of ‘periodic training’ every five years in order to maintain driving lorries professionally.

Those drivers who hold a full licence to drive a lorry before the 10 September 2009 will not need to take the qualification examinations, though they will need to do the ‘periodic training’.

Readers can find further infomation on the Business Link CPC page.