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Providing Advanced Tachograph Training for Experienced HGV Drivers

With the use of tachographs for UK drivers being mandated, it goes without saying that training is provided on how to do so legally during HGV training. But what about those drivers with experience under their belts? Do they still need to be trained? Spoiler alert: Yes, they do, and that’s what we look at in this article.

No matter how long you’ve been driving professionally, the need to stick to driver hour rules is vital for reasons of safety and legal compliance. So, stay with us as we examine the ‘advanced’ tachograph training that transport managers should be giving to those experienced behind the wheel of a commercial truck. 

What to Teach As Part of Advanced Tachograph Training

Naturally, the first thing you should be ticking off the list when providing advanced tachograph training is the basics. Even though experienced drivers should know the ins and outs of using a device like this properly, it doesn’t hurt to provide a refresher, particularly as it will stop any bad habits from manifesting and turning into compliance problems. 

Taking that as a given, here are a few other tachograph subjects that you can cover to make them better, more compliant drivers. 

  • How to Extract & Interpret Data – when an HGV knows how to extract and analyse driving data from their tachograph unit, it can significantly improve their decision-making. As such, it’s a good idea to offer training in tachograph software, allowing them to make informed adjustments to their driving relating to time management and fuel efficiency.
  • Peer Learning Sessions – by bringing experienced (and new drivers) together, you can tap into the collective knowledge of your fleet. This can be something of a goldmine, as it allows for practical tips to be shared, challenges to be discussed, and novel solutions to be found. This fosters a collective culture of improvement within your team. 
  • Digital Tachograph Workshops – another great way to improve the performance of your drivers is to offer specialised workshops that cover the lesser-known features and shortcuts that exist within each tachograph system. This can help drivers streamline the way they work and become evermore efficient in what they do. 
  • Simulation-Based Training – when you provide a risk-free environment in which drivers can hone their compliance skills, simulation-based training can be the answer. In this training, simulations are created to mimic certain driving scenarios, such as what’s involved in a cross-border trip – something that prepares them well for real-world applications. 

Rather than being simply another bureaucratic chore, drivers need to see this type of tachograph training as a component designed to broaden their skillset through continuous learning. It also represents an opportunity to keep your drivers updated on any regulation changes or updates to tachograph technology.

It’s About More Than Just Compliance & Safety

While tachograph training exists primarily to keep all road users safe and your fleet on the right side of the law, it’s actually more than that. It’s also an opportunity to develop your drivers, be they experienced or otherwise. Once the important basics have been covered, drivers can be informed on how to hone their approach for optimal performance. 

By adopting the strategies we’ve covered here, drivers can enhance their efficiency, ensure their well-being, and contribute to safety in the transport industry. By doing so, you prepare your drivers for success and foster a culture of self-improvement, meaning it’s a win-win for everyone. 

If your drivers require further training or if you’re seeking more detailed information, we’re here to help. We offer advanced tachograph training workshops and sessions tailored to your needs. Don’t hesitate to get in touch for more information or to arrange a session.

About the author

Jonathan Gilder

Jonathan Gilder

Head of Training and Transport
Jonathan is a distinguished NRI HGV Instructor accredited by RTITB, with certifications in IOSH Managing Safely, RTITB Lift Truck Instruction, and ROSPA Assured PAT Testing. His expertise extends to EdI Level 3 NVQ Assessing, Btec Level 2 in Transportation of Goods by Road, and he is a skilled Trainer in Driver CPC and Incident Investigation from GH Safety.

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