Anyone who wants to be a professional LGV driver and who possesses only a Category B licence will need to obtain an LGV provisional licence in order to complete the necessary training for one of the Category C licences. For the purposes of this guide, the term ‘LGV’ (large goods vehicle) will apply to any commercial vehicle for which a Category C, C+E, C1, or C1+E licence is required. We must make this distinction in light of the fact that the same term is sometimes used to describe light goods vehicles, such as small vans, for example.
As for the provisional licence, it is essentially an entitlement allowing you to train using larger and heavier vehicles. Without the entitlement, getting behind the wheel of an LGV would not be allowed. And you cannot train if you cannot actually drive the vehicle you plan on being tested with. The good news is that obtaining an LGV provisional licence is not difficult at all. It is a matter of procuring the necessary paperwork, completing a routine health exam and submitting the paperwork along with a copy of your photo card licence.
Drivers wishing to be LGV professionals must obtain forms D2 and D4 from the DVLA. These forms contain the necessary paperwork broken down into two components, as follows:
It usually takes between 14 and 21 business days to receive your entitlement in the post after submitting both forms. Most of the students who train at the HGV Training Centre use this time to prepare for the LGV theory test. Some will prepare by taking classes through us while others prefer to prepare on their own. In either case, having the provisional entitlement in hand allows the training process to continue.
Routine Medical Exam Requirements
We encourage the students not to panic over the routine medical exam requirement to receive an LGV provisional licence. The government does not expect you to be in perfect health in order to be a professional driver. Reasonably good health is necessary, but you do not have to be a scientific specimen worthy of worldwide scrutiny. Furthermore, any licenced GP can conduct an examine and complete the paperwork. The only exception is a GP not qualified to handle the sight portion of the test. In such a case, you would need a separate optician to complete that part.
The LGV medical exam includes the following:
The doctor conducting your medical exam is essentially looking for evidence of any physical or psychological condition that could potentially make you unsafe on the road. Most of the students who train with us have no problem passing the medical exam. Even in cases where diabetes might be present, a candidate would not be disqualified from becoming an LGV driver with proper management of the disease.
It should be noted that obtaining an LGV provisional entitlement in the presence of certain physical conditions may only entitle you to drive long enough to earn your licence and work for a few months. You may have to undergo annual or semi-annual health screenings to make sure you are still in good health. But that is something we can talk about after your training is complete.
It is entirely possible for future LGV trainees to download the necessary documents from the DVLA website by themselves. It is also possible to schedule a medical exam, complete all of the paperwork, and get everything submitted to the appropriate channels within a reasonable amount of time by yourself. But there is an awful lot of work involved. Here at the HGV Training Centre, we alleviate much of that work by providing administrative assistants throughout.
When you sign up to train with us, we immediately give you two introductory packets of information:
Should you decide to work with us to prepare for the LGV theory test, we offer two additional resources. The first is a piece of software that enables you to prepare for the test by taking multiple practice tests while you learn. This is great software that should go a long way toward making you comfortable with the information long before you take the test.
Second, you can take theory test preparation classes at any one of our more than four dozen facilities in the UK. Preparation classes are convenient, affordable, and very effective. Some 92% of our students pass the theory test on the first try.
You might be wondering, “what happens after I obtain my LGV provisional licence?” With provisional entitlement in hand, you are able to undergo practical skills training at the HGV Training Centre. It is this training that prepares you to take the final test you will need to pass in order to get your licence. It is provided both in the classroom and in the driver’s seat of an appropriate vehicle.
We should point out that the testing requirements have changed with the implementation of the CPC mandate. What used to be a process involving just two tests is now one that involves four. The final test we previously mentioned comprises two different parts that are taken during the same session, at an approved testing facility. Those two parts are:
It is not difficult to get your LGV provisional licence in order to begin professional driver training. We would be happy to help you navigate the process if all of this seems too daunting or challenging. The HGV Training Centre works with hundreds of drivers who pass through our doors every single month.
If you want to know more about getting an LGV driving licence please choose from the selection of our other articles listed below.
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