CPC training providers are offering drivers remote training to help fill the gap after coronavirus forced the closure of classroom-based courses.
The Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) decision that there should be no further classroom-based Driver CPC training until June 21 had potentially left HGV drivers whose Driver Qualification Card (DQC) runs out before then, with a problem. How to complete their annual round of periodic training before the deadline date on their card.
However, training providers who meet required DVSA standards can offer online training. Driver Hire is one of them and has a wide range of online Driver CPC training courses available.
“Obviously we can’t offer any courses that feature an on-road or practical element,” said John Keelan-Edwards, Driver Hire risk management director. “Following conversations with the DVSA, they’ve given us the green light to run 16 courses covering subjects including up to the minute instructions on Drivers’ Hours and the Working Time Directive, Fuel Efficient Driving, Manual Handling and Health and Safety.
“We’ve been really pleased with the strong demand we’ve seen for courses, especially from individual drivers, since launching the service last week.”
Another CPC training provider, Fleet Source, has gone live with a TV-based training solution across its Driver CPC classroom course offering.
Now fully approved by DVSA, the Fleet Source Live training is ‘Livecast’ to delegates and includes interactive content, designed to ensure delegates’ experience, engagement and learning retention is much better than that provided by traditional webinar solutions.
Fleet Source has gone live with a TV-based training solution
Fleet Source CEO, Nick Caesari, said: “These are unprecedented times for the transport industry, with the challenge of meeting increased demand for delivery of vital foods, medicines and hygiene products, whilst adhering to Government restrictions on social distancing, as well as minimising the risk of incidents whilst making deliveries.
“Through our Livecast experience using a TV studio, delegates can interact with the trainer, as well as each other from their home, replicating the classroom experience whilst staying safe.”
Fleet Source has created a dedicated TV studio at its Letchworth headquarters, with a large majority of its previously classroom-based courses being delivered and managed live by qualified DCPC training professionals, teaching up to 24 delegates each session.
Course registration and identity checks are undertaken digitally before every course and each delegate is monitored and assessed throughout the course to verify full course attendance and to ensure learning outcomes are achieved.
“Fleet professionals are contacting us for support to cover immediate demand, but also to use available time to ensure catch-up in mandatory training provision to cover lower volume sectors,” said Caesari.
“Ours is a dynamic industry working very hard to meet current challenges and prepare for the future beyond this current crisis. We’ll do everything we can to work with them to deliver the right solutions to meet their needs.”
Meanwhile, FORS has announced that all its classroom-based manager training courses will now be held as online webinars as a result of the coronavirus outbreak and government restrictions.
From yesterday (April 1), FORS Professional Practitioner workshops, FORS Professional Car and Van Fleet Management Essentials, FORS Professional HGV/PCV Fleet Management Essentials, and FORS Professional Collision Management will all be held as webinars, to allow participants to undertake manager training despite Government restrictions on movement currently in place.
The web-based courses will go live on the same day as the original classroom sessions were scheduled and have been adapted to suit the online format.
Participants will still have the opportunity to interact and ask questions.
As announced on 20 March 2020, FORS Bronze on-site audits are currently suspended until further notice, with member accreditation maintained at its current level, and FORS Bronze, Silver and Gold downgrades not taking place where accreditation dates are exceeded.
FORS manager Sonia Hayward said: “FORS members may struggle to attend any online training course given the difficult situation facing everyone at the moment, but we would encourage those who can to make the most of this opportunity to continue with their professional development online.
“Whilst audits and downgrades are suspended, attendance to online training will still count towards meeting the FORS requirements and help with FORS accreditation in the future.”
FORS Practitioner webinars will count towards the FORS Practitioner qualification, which stipulates participants must complete a series of 10 FORS Practitioner workshops.
Driver Hire’s Keelan-Edwards concluded: “Clearly, at this current critical time for the whole nation, it’s imperative that logistics operations in key sectors want to keep as many drivers on the road as possible.
"Losing drivers because their DQC card has expired is an unnecessary risk – this is the way to avoid it.
"Equally, it’s a perfect opportunity for drivers working in non-essential sectors, who may have been temporarily stood down, to complete their annual round of training. The same applies to drivers who are self-isolating because they may have been in contact with someone who has the virus.”
A review of the advice regarding classroom-based training will take place in June.