UK law now permits Category B driving licence holders to drive an alternatively-fuelled vehicle weighing up to 4.25 tonnes. The vehicle must not be driven outside of Great Britain. It must be used for the transportation of goods, not be towing a trailer and the driver must have completed a minimum of 5 hours training.
This section contains:
Key points about AFV training.
How Employers and Drivers get training and certification.
How NRI LGV instructors provide the necessary training and certification.
Training may only be provided by members of the DVSA-endorsed NRI, or by members of the NVDIR which is recognised by DVSA.
An alternatively-fuelled vehicle is a vehicle powered by electricity, natural gas, biogas or hydrogen, or hydrogen and electricity.
Employers and drivers who wish to take advantage of the new legislation must carry out a minimum of 5 hours of training on driving alternatively fuelled vehicles.
Training must follow the syllabus published by the Department of Transport:
A certificate is issued on completion of training. The NRI LGV instructor contacts NRI and we issue the driver with a certificate confirming that they have completed the required training.
The certificate can then be used by third parties to check that the driver has completed the training. Third parties who are likely to want to evidence that a driver has completed training are; insurance companies, employers, the police. There is no requirement for Category B licence holders to carry a certificate with them while driving.
Note that anyone found driving an alternatively fuelled vehicle between 3.5 tonnes and 4.25 tonnes on a Category B licence without having done the 5 hours training would be guilty of an offence under the Road Traffic Act (1988).
All NRI-registered LGV instructors are permitted to offer AFV training, but not all may do so. Employers and drivers are able to procure training from any NRI-registered instructor who offers AFV training and the fee for the training is a matter of commercial negotiation between the parties.
Certificates are sent directly by NRI to an address specified by a driver and cost £15 + VAT, which includes postage.
In the event a certificate is lost or stolen, NRI issue a replacement certificate to the driver. The cost of a replacement certificate will be charged at £15 + VAT.
Certificates contain the following information:
- Instructor name
- Instructor NRI registration number
- Date training undertaken
- Driving licence number of driver
- Name of trained driver
- NRI contact details
There are training materials available from the NRI for Alternatively Fuelled Vehicle Training, which includes an Instructor PowerPoint. This is currently available at £25 +VAT (please note, from 30th April 2020, this will be chargeable at £35 +VAT). To order your training materials, contact the NRI team here.