When it comes to learning to drive an HGV, you would think the whole process is fairly straightforward. But in reality, that’s far from the case. In fact, there are a lot of words, terms and phrases you’re going to come across that you may not have heard before. Like any industry, the HGV world is full of acronyms, or specialist phrases, and as a driver you will be expected to learn them all. We understand just how daunting this task is, so today we’re going to help you hit the ground running with a jargon-busting blog, covering some of the more common jargon you’re likely to hear.
ADR: ADR stands for the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road. ADR is much easier to say! It’s a directive that requires you and the haulage firm to have a specialist ADR license in order to carry dangerous goods on the road.
Artic: Short for ‘articulated lorry’. These are the combination of a tractor unit and a trailer – so one large unit instead of 2 separate ones.
Acquired Rights: Having ‘acquired rights’ means you didn’t have to take the Driver CPC initial qualification. This could be because of a licence you already held, or if you got your vocational licence before a certain date. The dates for each type of licence can be found here.
Backload: This is a term used by drivers to describe a certain type of job. This job has been organised to fill the vehicle on its way back towards the depot it came from. Deliveries in it can be either made along the way, or end at the original depot – but the idea is to not let an empty HGV go to waste.
Driver CPC: The Driver CPC stands for ‘Certificate of Professional Competency’, and is the series of tests used to determine if you are safe and able to drive a HGV on UK roads professionally. This license needs to be held before any further training can be done, and must be kept up to date every 5 years.
Hiab: This is a brand name, and its the most commonly used type of lorry mounted crane found in the haulage industry.
HGV / LGV: Short for ‘heavy goods vehicle’ or ‘large goods vehicle’ respectively – and it’s the kind of vehicle you will be driving on a day to day basis.
Sprinter: A large van, often used for smaller loads or multiple deliveries. It is also used as an escort vehicle for HGVs with big bulky loads, and as a vehicle for repair jobs when needed.
Tachograph: The name of a device fitted onto all commercial vehicles, especially HGVs. Tachographs track time, speed, distance and driver activity. They are designed to help record these things for legal reasons, but also to help drivers keep track of their own hours. Professional drivers can only drive for a set amount of time per day and per week, and tachographs track and display that information for them.
Work to Instruction: When a company hires a vehicle (normally a Hiab) to work on site, moving items around the site at the client’s instruction. This doesn’t usually involve doing any deliveries or pickups, but instead just following directions from customers on site. So – working to order.
And that’s it for today. While it’s not a comprehensive list, these are some of the more common terms you’re likely to hear during your HGV training, and while working on the. If you would like to know more, or want us to write another one of these posts, then please just get in touch to let us know. And on behalf of everyone at The HGV Training Centre, we would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
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