They’re going to need a driver’s Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC); and they won’t be permitted to drive that vehicle in a few years time if they haven’t got one.

To obtain a CPC a driver will have to complete 35 hours of training between now and 9 September 2014. Courses can encompass anything from first aid to driving with fuel efficiency in mind, but they must get the thumbs-up from JAUPT, the Joint Approvals Unit for Periodic Training.

If you passed a test that lets you get behind the wheel of something heavier than a 3.5-tonner since 10 September 2009 then you will have already got your initial CPC. If you want to keep it, however, then you too will have to complete 35 hours of training during the five years after you passed your test.

While heavy truck drivers are for the most part well aware of this requirement, many of those who drive vehicles in the 3.5 to 7.5 tonne category may still be ignorant of it. “I believe that there are literally thousand of drivers and employers out there who have no idea that this is happening,” says one trainer. “It’s going to come as a bit of a shock to them when the penny drops.”