NFU Scotland have issued a warning concerning the requirement for farmers and their employees to have gained a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) by September 9 if using vehicles over 3.5 tonnes.
NFUS legal and technical committee chairman, Jamie Smart, commented: “As of yesterday (September 9), drivers of goods vehicles, including floats, over 3.5 tonnes must have undertaken at least 35 hours of CPC training and do so every five years. Despite our efforts, the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency has stated that there is no blanket exemption available for agriculture.
“Most drivers who require a category C or D licence should have carried out the required training before this day. There is the potential for up to a £1,000 fine and penalty points on an operator’s licence if you are found to not have a CPC.
“For those that haven’t yet obtained a CPC, our advice is to go through the training as soon as possible. You can contact your local machinery ring, or use the course finder tool online to find a CPC course near you.”
The union added that it was still working to see how it can make the system work better for farmers.
“We are liaising with the National Farmers Union in England and the British Agricultural Bureau in Brussels to see how it is working elsewhere in Europe,” said NFUS. “In the absence of any derogation, farmers should be considering training.”