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EEC drivers will all need a training certificate

7th August 1970, Page 28
7th August 1970
Page 28
Page 28, 7th August 1970 — EEC drivers will all need a training certificate
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

• Practical and theoretical examinations are part of a training programme for all goods and passenger transport vehicle drivers which the Commission of the Common Market (EEC) proposed on Friday to the Council of Ministers in Brussels. If adopted, the proposal could mean that acceptance of Britain as an EEC member country would bring marked changes to road transport training in the UK.

This move by the EEC Commission is made in fulfilment of the terms of the long-standing draft regulation calling for harmonization between all the members of several aspects of road transport; among the results have been the provision for a standard eight-hour driving day and the eventual introduction of tachographs. But the regulation also requires that the Commission should propose, and the Council should discuss and approve, the minimum level of training to be adopted throughout the EEC for drivers in goods and passenger transport.

The original regulation laid down a specific framework of requirements, as follows:

1) Drivers of good vehicles over 7.5 tons gross who are aged 18, but not yet 21, must possess a certificate of professional ability to show that they have received training recognized by one of the member States.

2) Drivers of passenger-carrying vehicles must be at least 21 and must fulfil at least one of the following conditions: (a) have worked as a driver, for at least a year, on goods vehicles of over 3.5 tons gross; (b) have worked for at least a year as a driver on regular passenger transport services, on routes not exceeding 50 km; or (c) have a certificate of professional ability to show that they have received training as a passenger vehicle driver to a standard recognized by one of the member States.

The regulation also lays down that the Council, in establishing the minimum acceptable level of training, should regard this as training to offset a lack of experience or maturity; it is not at this stage intended to be a full professional training—for which the Commission will later make its proposals within a general programme of occupational training in road transport Thus the Commission's present directive is aimed at making _ provisions for examinations which goods and passenger drivers must pass to show that they have the minimum level of training and knowledge laid down by the Council.

The Commission has suggested that both theoretical and practical tests will be necessary. For example, simple levels of mathematical ability and a knowledge of the metric system will be needed, plus a basic knowledge of drivers' working hours and similar legislation, an elementary grasp of vehicle mechanics and the technology of

road transport, and minimum standards ol awareness of road traffic signs ant regulations. The practical tests will cove; driving itself, the, actual carrying out o typical transport operations in which 4 driver becomes involved, and at least sorni aspects of vehicle maintenance.

The Commission suggests that tit; theoretical tests must establish that ; candidate has the necessary knowledge t( exercise the activity of a driver of goods o passengers by road, while the practical test must show that the candidate has the abaft] and knowledge to put this theoretical facia: into practice.

Where drivers have passed nation* established drivirig /transport examinations this should be regarded as the achievemen of the minimum level necessary for certificate; and the certificate of professions aptitude issued by the member State mm be recognized throughout the Community.

The EEC Commission stipulates that within a year of the directive being adopte • by the Council of Ministers, membe countries must have introduced all th necessary measures to comply with it.

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