An ADR licence (VTC) is required by professional car, MGV and HGV drivers who transport dangerous goods by road. Successfully completing the ADR course should mean more job opportunities, better career prospects and ultimately a higher salary.
Most haulage companies (some more than others) will transport dangerous goods. The type of ADR licence you require will depend on what classes of dangerous substances you are moving and in what type of vehicle or container (i.e. packaged goods or tanks.) In order to gain an ADR licence drivers must complete and pass a minimum of 3 elements including;
- Core. 1.5 days covering the basics. What to do in an emergency, load and vehicle security, tunnel restrictions, basic 1st aid, fire precaution etc.
- Packages or Tanks (Packages is 0.5 days whereas Tanks is 1.5 days). Either module will suffice to be awarded an ADR certificate. Drivers have to gain an understanding of the different types of transport being used to carry dangerous goods
- At least 1 class of dangerous goods (9 classes in total)
There are a total of 9 hazard classes within ADR, including:
- Class 1. Explosives
- Class 2. Gases
- Class 3. Flammable Liquids
- Class 4. Flammable Solids
- Class 5. Oxidising Substances
- Class 6. Infectious, Toxic Substances
- Class 7. Radioactive Material
- Class 8. Corrosive Substances
- Class 9. Miscellaneous Substances
There are also 2 types of mode container types:
- Dangerous goods in tanks (tank container over 3,000 litres)
- Dangerous goods other than in tanks containers, (packages, IBC’s, skips etc)
For example a fuel tanker driver will need the Core, Tank and Class 3 (flammable liquids) elements of ADR in order to carry out his or her duties.
Most drivers (HGV class 2, cat C, rigid) elect to acquire the packaged goods ADR licence. The course duration for this is 3.5 days (9am till 4.30-5pm) and is all classroom based. The 3.5 days covers the core element (1.5 days), packaged goods element (0.5 days) and all classes of dangerous goods except 1 and 7 (radioactive and explosive). It also includes half a day set aside for examinations
Most drivers (HGV class 1, CE, articulated or drawbar) tend to complete the 5 day ADR Packages and Tanks course. These courses would cover the packaged element plus the tanker module, and all classes except explosive and radioactive.
ADR Radioactive and Explosives
Class 1 (Explosive) and class 7 (Radioactive) are the niche classes within the 9 classes of ADR. Very few transport companies will get involved in moving these substances as they are both specialised and (can be) complicated. Therefore drivers, unless they intend to move classes 1 and 7 are advised not to add these parts.
ADR and Driver CPC
It is worth knowing most of the ADR training providers listed within this website have invested in ADR, Driver CPC approval. This means attending an ADR course (whether you pass the exams or not) can count towards your DQC.
This will range from 7 hours (ADR refresher course) up to 28 hours (ADR initial 5 day course). So before you book your ADR course make sure it is Driver CPC approved. That way you can gain 2 qualifications at the same time.
The ADR exams are multi choice and pretty straight forward. Many more drivers pass the ADR exams than fail. The course and exams are delivered and pitched at National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) level 2. The pass mark for each exam is 70%. If drivers pay attention on the course and read the exam questions carefully they should not experience too many problems.
Once the exams have been sat the papers are sent to the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) for marking. It takes anything from 2 to 6 weeks to mark the papers, send results and (if passed) issue the ADR licence. Please note. Drivers cannot move (in scope) dangerous goods until they have their ADR licence in their possession
An ADR licence (VTC) is valid for 5 year and issued by the Driving Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA). If you need ADR training then Save time, money and hassle and use our search page to go direct to SQA approved ADR training centres in your area.