At a recent meeting in Dublin between Robert Kastner President the Union of International Chauffeurs and Routiers (UICR) and Barry Lyons Chairman of the European Professional Drivers Association, the question was raised of both organisations, “Do they believe that commercial vehicle drivers on international transport using light commercial vehicles ( LCV < 3.5 ton) on a B category licence, should undergo similar training and have the protection of driver hours regulations the same as heavy commercial vehicle, C licence category licence holders (HCV > 3.5 ton)”.
It was agreed by both organisations that the LCV driver on international transport has the same social responsibilities as the HCV driver. The LCV drivers are away from home for extended periods of time. They are living out of a very small space, mostly sleeping in a small space above the cab. They are exposed to the risk of criminals breaking into their vehicles and they are spending long days at the wheel of their vehicles.
Without the necessary training they are of course susceptible to driver fatigue, to the negative effects of social isolation, they to need know how to maintain their vehicles while away from base, they need to be able to conduct proper daily vehicle inspections and ensure that they are not carrying contraband or people trafficking. The rules in place to ensure the health and wellbeing of commercial drivers and the safety of road users and ensuring fair completion in the road transport sector should of course apply to all commercial vehicle drivers regardless of the size of their vehicle.