Government actions to simplify the testing process will result in more than 50,000 HGV driving tests each year. Driving tests for HGVs will be overhauled. Instead of having to take 2 separate tests (three weeks apart), drivers will just need to take one test that covers both rigid and articulated vehicles.
By increasing the number of HGV driving tests available, around 20,000 more people will be able to gain their licenses and enter the industry sooner than they did previously. Moreover, tests will be shortened by removing the “reversing exercise” element.
The new law will also allow car drivers to tow a trailer or caravan without taking another test, leading to approximately 30,000 more HGV driving tests a year.
Drivers must meet the same proficiency requirements as before to operate an HGV, with road safety remaining paramount. Those who fail to demonstrate the highest proficiency won’t receive a licence.
A number of factors, including an aging workforce, contribute to the driver shortage affecting countries across Europe and the United States.
It is hoped that today’s announcement will increase testing and numbers of drivers, enabling industry leaders to build a reliable UK haulage industry that attracts drivers from across society.