Designed for the industry by the industry

The Petroleum Driver Passport is an excellent example of what government says is industry itself taking responsibility for setting and monitoring standards says Brian Worrall

The Petroleum Driver Passport is an excellent example of what government says is industry itself taking responsibility for setting and monitoring standards says Brian Worrall

Fuel Oil News spoke to Brian Worrall of the Downstream Oil Distribution Forum (DODF) which has been instrumental in driving forwards the new Petroleum Driver Passport (PDP) initiative

The DODF works with BP, GB Oils, Greenergy and Murco, logistics companies – DHL, Hoyer, Norbert Dentressangle, Suckling, Suttons, Turners and Wincanton, the Unite and URTU unions, several trade associations including UKPIA, FPS, the Downstream Fuel Association and the Tank Storage Association plus government and regulatory bodies and Sector Skills Councils.

What was the background to the Petroleum Driver Passport initiative?

In 2011, the ACAS agreement between Unite and the major hauliers agreed that they would put together an industry body, the DODF, to act as a forum for health and safety issues within the industry. The PDP was born from the industry group that was put together, with all parties agreeing that the petroleum tanker driver sector needed a consistent level of training to a high standard across the whole industry. The DODF created the training standard that underpins the PDP and ensures no duplication with existing ADR training. Whilst there is a lot of good training practice in the industry already, there is no mechanism to ensure that the training standard is specified and adhered to, and this is what the PDP does.

In addition to DODF, who was instrumental in setting up PDP?

DECC was the government department that ACAS requested take the lead in re-establishing the DODF, which had existed some six years prior. DECC enlisted the help of the two Sector Skills Councils in the industry, Skills for Logistics (haulage) and Cogent (downstream petroleum) to make this happen. The DODF has subsequently appointed Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) to manage the scheme. SQA already manage the ADR programme in the UK.

Is the industry receptive to another level of training?

For most operators in the industry, who already operate to a high standard, this standard will not necessarily require any more than they currently do, though it would help to identify any gaps against the defined training standard. Operators who do not have these standards already in place will need to do so, and they will be able to turn to training providers as well as their own resources to make this happen. We have devised the PDP to fit in with existing industry training. The PDP is on a 5-year renewal cycle, aligned to the driver’s ADR renewal date, and the annual refresher element is aligned to JAUPT and driver CPC; training which has to happen anyway. Importantly for such a hands-on role, the PDP has both classroom and practical elements. This initiative is the result of wide industry consultation and the detail of the scheme has been put together with representatives right across the sector, from industry associations through haulage and distributor companies to unions and to tanker drivers. We have taken into account comments we have received as we have developed the scheme and so we are confident that we have pitched PDP for the industry.

How much will it cost an operator?

The costs are still being finalised – some of the cost is annual, some is incurred at the 5-year renewal point. To give some indication, the scheme costs will be in the region of £25 per driver per year. In addition to this, there may be training provider and/or assessor costs depending on how companies train and assess. For those who already train to the PDP standard, many of these costs will already be in the business

What are the key benefits of PDP?

The PDP sets a benchmark training standard to which everyone in the industry will train. As it has a practical as well as a classroom element, and a 5-year renewal cycle with an annual refresher element, it works well with existing industry training. It has been designed for the industry by the industry. It gives terminal operators, in exercising their duty of care, confidence that they are allowing rack access only to drivers who are fully trained. Drivers can have a confidence that they are fully trained to do what is an important and complex job and hauliers and distributors can point to an externally verified standard to which they are training their drivers. As far as government is concerned, this is an excellent example of what ministers refer to as a “better regulation” where industry itself takes responsibility for setting and monitoring standards. It will give the whole petroleum tanker driver sector a confidence that training is taking place to an externally verified standard and the PDP will help maintain standards across all operators into the future.

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