Drivers with an ordinary driving license for cars are now able to operate heavier alternatively-fuelled vans without needing an upgraded license, provided they complete 5 hours of training.
The new law comes as part of the government’s commitment to encourage the transition to ultra-low emission vehicles, as set out in its Road to Zero Strategy.
Under previous rules, a driver with a class B license - the basic standard for cars - could drive a van weighing up to 3.5 tonnes.
However, low emission vans are generally heavier than their conventional counterparts because of the weight of electric batteries. This would reduce the amount of goods a driver with a normal license could carry, or mean the the driver would have to apply for an upgraded license for heavier vehicles and lorries.
To avoid this hurdle, the new legislation means that class B license holders are now eligible to drive alternatively-fuelled vans up to 4.25 tonnes in weight.
‘Supporting business owners’
Minister for future of mobility, Jesse Norman, said: “The government’s Road to Zero Strategy sets out our ambition for all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040.
“By changing these driving license requirements, we are seeking to support business owners by enabling them to use alternatively-fuelled vehicles more easily.”
Drivers will have to complete a minimum of five hours additional training set out by government to confirm their eligibility.
The government currently offers up to £8,000 discount on eligible electric vans, as well as capital allowance and tax incentives.
Posted under Environmental Regulations and Legislation and Environmental Technologies and Renewable Energy on 1 May 2019