The decision by transport secretary grant Shapps to scrap the trailer towing driving test late last year has forced the motorist and automobile standards Authority (DVSA) to introduce a new towing accreditation scheme.
The decision to drop tests for motorists wanting to tow trailers up to 3,500kgs flew in the face of recommendations from within the DVSA, motoring organisations and safety bodies, but it went ahead anyway in an effort to complimentary up capacity for a lot more HGV driving tests. considering that the law changed, any individual with a full driving licence is legally entitled to tow a trailer up to 3,500kgs, whether trained or not. That indicates any motorist can tow a large caravan or horse trailer, or a trailer for work.
Towing guide: UK laws, licences, costs and tips
However, an unplanned consequence of cancelling the towing test is that employers with staff who are required to tow trailers for work, now have no indicates of meeting HSE obligations to show their motorists are appropriately trained.
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As the DVSA no longer has the power to ‘pass’ or ‘fail’ candidates, they will instead accredit training organisations by means of the national Council for recognized Trailer Training. full details of the scheme have yet to be announced, but it is believed that recognized trainers will be able to issue certificates to show that candidates have participated in towing training. It’s not yet clear whether trainers will be allowed to fail candidates who don’t measure up, because the newly revised licence laws indicate everyone has the ideal to hitch up a trailer – whether competent or not.
A DVSA spokesperson said: “The government is committed to encouraging motorists to get professional training before towing for leisure or business.
“The trailer training accreditation scheme aims to make sure motorists who want to tow a trailer for leisure or service have the skills, knowledge and competencies to tow safely. and for those towing a trailer in connection with their work, to help make sure an employer’s corporate responsibilities to make sure safe working practices are met.”
The DVSA is holding webinars for trailer training providers this week and next, created to supply an update on the accreditation scheme, and to explain the role of the national Council for recognized Trailer Training.
Planning to tow? check out our guide…