Do you have a driving license but want to switch to a larger vehicle? According to UK laws, you need additional training and passing the exam. A C1 license is necessary to drive a 7.5-tonne car. Considering an extra category license is cheaper than going for an advanced training course. When looking forward to driving a 7.5-tonne vehicle, here is the ultimate guide.
Category C1 training
Among the various license categories, the creation of the C1 license was to give drivers a chance to drive a large vehicle with more weight. Completing C1 training allows driving a car with a weight not exceeding 7.5 tonnes. So, you can’t drive a vehicle weighing more than 7.5 tonnes without getting additional C1+E training. The additional training allows you to drive a car with about 12 tonnes.
Requirements for C1 course
You have to be more than 18 years to begin C1 training. Additionally, you need a category B driving license or standard driving license that covers driving cars. To begin training, you apply and pass a Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) medical test. You can get this from your private doctor or local GP. Going to the local GP is easier and more comfortable, but you must sacrifice time and money.
There is a risk of delay to see the doctor making you delay to begin the course. Alternatively, you can visit a private doctor who specialists in DVLA medical tests. You have to discuss your medical history with the doctor before a physical examination that involves an eye test. After passing the test and getting DVLA approval, applying for a provisional C1 license is next. You use a D2 form to apply the information that will go to the original provisional license application.
Options for the C1 course
Various options are available for the Category C1 license training depending on your current experience and confidence as a driver. When having experience towing or driving a bigger vehicle, a day of training is enough. Such a test focuses on preparing you for the physical test and involves honing skills, including maneuvering.
If you prefer full training to go through trickier areas, an extra cost will apply for two or three days of training. You will practice driving, reversing, and maneuvering a bigger vehicle. Additionally, you have more time to spend going over areas that need more attention to become confident. Usually, C1 training is one-to-one with your instructor, but a three-day training allows two students concurrently.
Completing the C1 course exam
The journey to getting a C1 license is different from getting a normal driving license. However, the test is similar. Your examiner will ask questions requiring responses after showing and telling about the vehicle. Fortunately, you will go over this multiple times with your examiner before the test. Make sure to have one last lesson before the test comes.
Afterwards, you will proceed to a driving test lasting one hour. The examiner will evaluate your driving skills using the same criteria you went through to get the normal driving license. Your examiner will see whether you can uncouple or recouple the trailer while adhering to safety procedures.
Benefits of C1 training
Becoming a more confident driver
Undertaking C1 training opens up more employment opportunities. Adding another category to your normal driving license helps you move forward in your current role, switch roles and marks a beginning of a new career path.
After your C1 training, look forward to becoming more confident. Your daily driving is likely to get more enjoyable. Maneuvering a bigger vehicle with ease makes driving regular cars calmer and relaxed. The training also makes you become more comfortable with enhanced safety on the road, better observation, and enhanced speed control.
Getting updated on driving laws and regulations
The second exam during C1 training requires referencing from the Highway Code while refreshing knowledge of road laws and regulations. You become updated with the latest driving codes and offenses with consequences. Taking a second test many years after the first one allows getting back into shape regarding enforcing safety procedures more carefully. It will enable discarding bad road habits you might have picked up along the way.
Exemptions to C1 training
Training requirements and regulations for additional license categories change with time. There’s a chance of exemption from C1 training depending on how long you have been with a regular license.
People who took driving lessons and passed before 1st January 1997 already have the C1 category in their license. Those who passed the driving test after 1st January 1997 will have to complete C1 training. On completion of the course and passing the exam, your license needs updating.
Training for a Category C1 License will boost your career and widen your chances of getting employed. However, you must understand the training requirements and pass the test to have this category included in your normal driving license.