What is Driver CPC?
Driver CPC is a Certificate of Professional Competence for professional bus and truck drivers. Its purpose is to set and maintain high standards of safety and driving among drivers of trucks and buses.
Driver CPC was introduced in Ireland on the 10th September 2008 for bus drivers and the 10th September 2009 for truck drivers. From these dates on, professional drivers need to take part in continuous training of one day per year in an RSA approved Training Centre to maintain their CPC entitlement.
New drivers will have to undertake the Driver CPC theory and practical driving tests before getting a Driver CPC qualification. If you already have a licence for a bus or truck (D/C licence) you will automatically be entitled to a Driver CPC and will not have to take a test but you will have to maintain your CPC entitlement by attending 1 days training every year over a 5 year period with an RSA approved CPC Training Organisation.
Is Driver CPC the same as Transport Manager CPC?
Transport Managers CPC is completely separate to Driver CPC and is a
qualification requirement for all Transport Managers applying for a Road
Haulage Operators Licence or a Road Passenger Transport Operators Licence.
The Transport Managers CPC course focuses on national and international
requirements for professional competence and involves set up, operating and maintenance of a transport company. The Transport Managers CPC course is provided and overseen by The Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT), 1 Fitzwilliam Place, Dublin 2, and can be contacted at (01) 6763188
Driver CPC focuses on health and safety, Eco driving and road safety and its aim is that all professional drivers have good driving and safety standards and that those standards are maintained throughout the professional driver’s career. The RSA is responsible for the introduction of the Driver CPC.
Why is the Road Safety Authority implementing Driver
CPC in Ireland?
The Road Safety Authority (RSA) introduced Driver CPC in Ireland because a
European Union law, Directive 2003/59/EC, says that professional drivers must undergo periodic training to maintain high standards of safety and driving. At the moment many professional drivers in the EU are working without the benefit of training or the opportunity to regularly refresh their skills. The RSA consulted with the transport industry, the general public and other European countries about implementing Driver CPC in Ireland.
Information for drivers
How does Driver CPC affect drivers with acquired rights
(Holders of C/D licenses)?
If you have a full licence for a truck or bus before Driver CPC came into force which was the 10th of September 2008 for buses and the 10th September 2009 for trucks, you will automatically get your Driver CPC without having to take more tests. This is called acquired rights. In order to keep your Driver CPC, you must do 35 hours of periodic training over each five year period (one day per year). Your driving licence is evidence of your acquired rights to CPC.
How does Driver CPC affect new drivers?
If you want to become a professional bus/truck driver, you will have to do
a Driver CPC examination. The examination includes:
two hour multiple choice theory test,
two hour case study theory test,
90 minute driving test, and
30 minute practical test.
If you wish you can attend training in RSA approved training centres to help you pass your Driver CPC examination.
Once you have completed and passed the four parts of the Driver CPC
examination you can apply for a driving licence in that category and a Driver CPC qualification card. You will then have to do one day of periodic training per year over each five year period to maintain your Driver CPC. You must pass the Case Studies and 30 minute test within a two year period.
You will have to pass all 4 exams to receive your Driver CPC.
What is Periodic Training?
Periodic training is training you need to do every year to maintain your Driver CPC. All professional drivers must do at least 35 hours training every five years and do at least seven hours a year to keep their Driver CPC. The training is in seven hour blocks which you must do in one day.
The training covers areas such as road safety, environmental driving and issues involving the health and well being of professional drivers. It does not involve a driving test or assessment.
Periodic training helps you improve your knowledge and skills to make sure that you are a driver of the highest professional standard. It also helps you to keep up to date with the changes in the industry and to benefit from training throughout your professional career.
The RSA and a working group consisting of people from the bus and road haulage industries have developed the training. The training headings are listed in the EU Directive. The RSA have approved the training course and the training centres that will deliver the training. Please see appendix 2 for the periodic training syllabus titles. A list of all RSA approved training providers is published on the RSA website – www.rsa.ie
How much will the periodic training cost?
Once a Training Provider has satisfied all RSA requirements and has been
approved, they will be able to advertise for business and will be responsible for publicising and facilitating the Driver CPC training sessions. The cost of each training session will be set by the individual training provider and will be subject to the market cost of providing the course.
For a complete list of RSA approved Training Providers in your area, please see the RSA website – www.rsa.ie
Where can I do my Driver CPC theory test?
Go to www.theorytest.ie to find the test centre closest to you.
What does the CPC theory test and CPC Case Study tests involve?
The Driver CPC Theory Test is step 1 of the CPC process and consists of 60
questions focusing on common driving and 40 questions that are vehicle specific i.e. truck theory test has 100 Questions and bus theory test has 100 Questions and the test duration is 2 hours. However, the combined Bus and Truck Theory Test will have 140 questions and the test duration is 2.5 hours.
The second test consists of three case studies, these are short scenarios which describe various situations which a driver might face and there are 15 questions on each case study (45 in total). To pass this test the driver must give correct answers to 28 of the 45 questions; a minimum of at least 5 questions must be passed on each case study.
Each stage takes 2 hours, and an additional 30 minutes if you are completing combined Bus and Truck Theory Test and it will be possible to take both tests on the same day. Prometric Ireland who currently facilitates the learner permit theory test also carries out the Driver CPC theory tests.
The tests cost €70 each and €84 if completing combined Bus and Truck Theory Test.
For more information or to book a test contact Prometric – locall 1890 606 106 or www.theorytest.ie
If a driver has passed either the bus or truck theory test alone and wishes to
complete the truck or Bus CPC theory test they can apply to do a Modular Theory Test for the category they intend to do providing it is done within 2 years of passing their initial CPC Theory Test. The fee for the Modular Theory Test is €45.
Where can I get information to assist me in passing the CPC theory tests?
Revision material for the CPC theory tests is available from Prometric. For more information please see www.theorytest.ie or telephone 1890 606 106.
Where can I do my Driver CPC driving and practical test?
The Driver CPC bus/truck test and practical test can be carried out in any existing bus/truck test location. Please note that certain vehicles cannot be tested at all centres. Information regarding test centre locations can be obtained on our website
www.drivingtest.ie. Please see appendix 3 for a list of all test centres and the categories of vehicle tested in each.
What does the CPC Practical test involve?
The practical knowledge test involves a 30 minute test on areas such as safety; passenger comfort; legal matters relating to driving; vehicle loading and stability; ability to deal with an emergency and physical risks involved in driving. This test is conducted in the driving test centre and is usually taken directly before/after the driving test; the vehicle is also required for this session. To apply for your Driver CPC Driving and Practical test, please contact the Road Safety Authority: www.drivingtest.ie
Bus drivers / Truck drivers
How does Driver CPC affect me as a Professional Driver?
If you are already a professional bus driver on the 10th September 2008 /
professional truck driver on the 10th of September 2009, you will get acquired rights for Driver CPC. Your licence should have the date of issue before the 10th September 2008 (for bus drivers), or 10th September 2009 (for truck drivers), which will be evidence of your Driver CPC.
You will then have to do 35 hours of periodic training within each five year period (one day per year) in an approved RSA training centre. When you complete all your periodic training within the five years you will get a card recording your Driver CPC, photograph and signature. If you do not complete five days of periodic training (one per year) within each five year period you will not get a card and therefore cannot work as a professional driver. There are penalties for drivers who drive professionally without their Driver CPC qualification.
How do I become a professional bus driver after the 10th
September 2008 / professional truck driver after the 10th
of September 2009?
To become a professional bus driver after the 10th September 2008 /
professional truck driver after the 10th of September 2009, you will have to
pass Driver CPC Theory Test (2 hours and 2.5 hours if completing the combined Bus and Truck Theory Test), the CPC Case Study Test (2 hours), a 90 minute driving test and a 30 minute practical test. You need to pass the Multiple Choice Theory Test and CPC Case Study Test before you take the driving test and practical test.
When you pass all four parts of the Driver CPC exam and get your bus or truck category driving licence, the RSA will issue a declaration form for you to fill out in order to apply for your Driver CPC card. You will then get a Driver CPC card which will record your photograph, signature, categories of vehicle you have Driver CPC, etc.
In order to maintain your Driver CPC, you will have to do 35 hours of periodic training over each five year period (one day per year). This is recorded on the RSA Driver CPC database.
When do I NOT need Driver CPC?
If you drive any of the vehicles listed below, you do not need Driver CPC.
vehicles not allowed go more than 45 kilometres per hour;
vehicles used or controlled by the Defence Forces, Civil Defence, the
Fire Service and forces responsible for maintaining public order;
vehicles undergoing road tests for technical development, repair or
maintenance, or new or rebuilt vehicles which have not been put
vehicles Drivers of vehicles for non-commercial purposes, e.g. driving as a
non paid volunteer, drivers of emergency or rescue vehicles;
vehicles used by Registered RSA approved Driving Instructors who are
giving driving instruction. for anyone who wants to obtain a driving
licence or a CPC;
vehicles used for carrying passengers or goods for personal use and not
for business; and
vehicles carrying materials or equipment that the driver uses as part of
their work, as long as driving the vehicle is not the driver’s main activity.
Other information about Driver CPC
Who enforces Driver CPC?
An Garda Síochána and the RSA Transport Officers have the powers to enforce
Driver CPC, under Statutory Instrument S.I. No. 359 of 2008.
What happens if I don’t obey the rules of Driver CPC?
If you cannot show your Driver CPC, you are breaking the law and you
could get a fine of up to €2,000.
If you fake documentation you could get a fine of up to €5,000.
If you drive without a valid Driver CPC you could get a fine of up to €2,000.
If you or an employer causes or lets another driver who does not have a
valid Driver CPC drive a relevant vehicle you / they could get a fine of up
What do I do if I am both a professional bus and truck driver?
If you have both a bus and truck licence, you will have to do six days of training within each five year period (42 hours of periodic training in 5 years). There are four training modules which must be completed by both bus and truck drivers; there is one module which is specific to bus drivers; and one which is specific to truck drivers. A driver with both a bus and a truck licence to maintain will be required to complete all six modules within each five year period.
What are the benefits of Driver CPC?
Both professional drivers and the transport and road haulage industries benefit from Driver CPC in Ireland. Some of these benefits are:
Better, safer drivers
Driver CPC means that professional drivers will have better driving skills.
This will lead to less casualties on our roads and protect more vulnerable
road users such as pedestrians, motorcyclists, cyclists, children and older
people. It can also save employers the costs of vehicle repair and loss of
trade. Career paths for professional drivers
The drivers’ profession is regulated to make sure that all professional
drivers have the skills they need to work in the industry. Driver CPC
creates a level playing field for the road haulage and passenger transport
industry. Quality standards are monitored and maintained to a high
quality which matches the best in Europe.
There are concerns for all professional drivers about their health,
lifestyle, eating habits, symptoms and effects of fatigue and stress and
work life balance. Periodic training helps to address these issues.
Environmental and economic benefits
Studies as far back as 2005 (The “Momenta Report” for the Department
for Transport in the UK (on the Safe and Fuel Efficient Driver Training
Programme Autumn 2005) have shown that the right driver training
would reduce fuel consumption by an average 9.5%. Even reducing it
by 5% would save 169,000 tonnes of oil a year, or about 192 million
litres@€1.20 a litre. Reduced fuel consumption combined with better
use of load transportation will reduce costs. Every tonne saved would
save about €1,400.
What is the role of the Road Safety Authority (RSA)
regarding Driver CPC?
The RSA is responsible for implementing Driver CPC in Ireland. The RSA has:
developed the Driver CPC examinations, including the two (2/2.5 hour)
Multiple Choice Theory Test, the Case Study Tests, the driving test and
30 minute CPC practical test;
developed the 35/42 hour periodic training course as outlined in the
approved and set standards for training centres on how they deliver
the periodic training that drivers must do and training for potential
professional drivers to help them to pass the first Driver CPC
implemented facilities for the issuing of Driver CPC cards to qualified
created a database for recording the Driver CPC qualification; and
made provisions for updating the RSA Driver CPC database with the
drivers’ training records.
How did the RSA decide on how to implement Driver CPC?
The RSA sent out a consultation document with recommendations in August
2007 about Driver CPC and how to introduce Driver CPC in Ireland with the least
effect on the passenger transport and road haulage industries. The RSA got
feedback from the transport industry and from the general public. The RSA met
with organisations who represent the transport industry, large transport
employers and other organisations and people who wanted to give their views
on Driver CPC. The RSA also met with other European countries to exchange
information on how each country was implementing Driver CPC.
Why did the RSA choose the test only option?
The RSA looked at all options the EU Directive gave countries to implement
Driver CPC. The RSA chose the test only option so that new professional drivers
can prepare for the test in a way that best suits their individual learning style.
The test only option is likely to have the least impact upon the industry in
recruiting new drivers.
The RSA has developed a programme which will help drivers who want to
do training before they do their Driver CPC examination. They can do the
training in training centres approved by the RSA. All professional drivers
across all EU member states have to do the 35 hours periodic training over
each five year period.
Cost of CPC Initial Qualification
Multiple choice questions (theory test 1) €70 (for single category)
Bus/truck case studies (test 2) €70
Bus/truck driving test €110
Practical test €32
Combined Bus and Truck Theory Test €84
Modular Theory Test €45
Working to Save Lives
Ref No. Revised CPC Info November 2018
Road Safety Authority
Driver CPC Unit, Moy Valley Business Park, Primrose Hill,
Dublin Road, Ballina, Co. Mayo.
email: firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.rsa.ie