The long awaited Public consultation paper on changes concerning the commercial road transport operator rules, EC Regulation 1071⁄2009 O Licence, has been released.
Proposed changes relating to CPC licence acquisition itself seem not as drastic as some in the training industry had speculated and forecast.
Rumours of significant changes in the way CPC is to be taught, learnt and indeed passed seem not to have come to fruition. The main changes in the consultation paper seem to be the harmonisation of the CPC national and international modules, and having more than one approval ⁄ exam body for CPC exams.
The Current CPC Rules, pre 4th December 2011 states all standard operator licence holders must appoint a transport manager, an individual who must be properly qualified. Suitably qualified means a transport manager who has obtained a CPC, Certificate of Professional Competence. CPC holders must pass a number of examinations to confirm they have the required knowledge to carry out their duties competently.
Currently persons can obtain a national CPC only, or a national and international CPC combined.
Proposed Changes to CPC
From 4th December 2011 it will continue to be the case that new entrants must pass a CPC examination testing required knowledge. However it will no longer be possible to obtain the CPC national only qualification. The proposal is to abolish national CPC completely. From this date the CPC national and international will be combined into one, although it is still unsure as to the examination format. Studying appropriately for the CPC exams will remain same, which is to learn the syllabus, typically in a classroom, prior to taking the CPC exams.
It was thought by some that learning the syllabus would become a portfolio based exercise, i.e. students would be required to create their own working document based on the syllabus, as opposed to being taught the syllabus “parrot fashion” in a classroom. It’s worth knowing, if you attained the CPC national only, before 4th December 2011 your CPC qualification will remain valid indefinitely. Also, according to the proposed changes, any pre 4th December 2011 CPC national only holders wishing to obtain international CPC, have to pass a CPC international only exam. They will not be required to pass the national CPC examination again.
Currently OCR is the only body who run CPC exams 4 times annually. From December 4th more than one examination or approval body will be invited to bid for and run CPC examinations. This proposed change could lead to more test dates per year. More exam bodies could mean more availability and less waiting. However different bodies have different rules and practices so maintaining a national standard could prove difficult to maintain. It would also have to be financially viable to an awarding body to run CPC exams. Based on current figures some CPC exams are sat by less than 100 people a year.
OCR , the current CPC awarding body seem to have a proven track record in CPC examination delivery. They are contracted to run the next 3 CPC exams in June, September and December.
What This May Mean for Standard O Licence holders
It could mean from 4 December 2011 all standard national O licence holders must have an appointed Transport Manager who has one of the following:
- an international CPC qualification.
- a national CPC obtained before 4 December 2011;
- an exemption via grandfather rights or an existing 3rd qualification
if you’re considering obtaining an operator CPC licence it’s recommended you sit one of the next 3 CPC exams June, September and December. These 3 dates are the last in the current format. No one knows for sure when, what or how CPC exams next year will be. Also if you just need a national CPC, as most do, you can still just do a national CPC. Leave it till next year and you will have to pass the international as well.
For further advice speak to your local training provider. Use our free search facility to find one in your area.