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Apr 2012: "Berufskraftfahrer - Fit für's 21. Jahrhundert", 15 April 2013, Berlin (DE)

Die DEKRA Akademie und MOVING laden zum Workshop nach Berlin

Berlin, April 2013: Die Qualität der Aus- und Weiterbildung von Berufskraftfahrern bedarf dringend einer  Revision. Der europäische Binnenmarkt und die rapide Zunahme grenzüberschreitender Gütertransporte und Personenbeförderung macht standardisierte Aus- und Weiterbildungsprogramme, aber auch eine grundsätzliche Qualitätsüberprüfung der aktuellen Formate unausweichlich. Das ist das wichtigste Fazit des nationalen Abschlussworkshops “Berufskraftfahrer – Fit fürs 21. Jahrhundert?“ im Rahmen des EU-Projekts Professional driving - more than just driving! (ProfDRV). ProfDRV wird für Deutschland von der DEKRA Akademie organisiert. In den Räumlichkeiten des Verbandes der Automobilindustrie (VDA) in Berlin diskutierten am 15.04.2013 über 50 Vertreter aus Politik, Verwaltung, Wirtschaft und Berufsbildung über die Berufskraftfahrerqualifikation in ganz Europa und insbesondere in Deutschland. Den Rahmen der Diskussion bildeten die Ergebnisse und Forderungen von ProfDRV.

Ausrichtungspartner dieses Workshops ist der Verband der Verkehrsverlage, MOVING International Road Safety Association e.V. (Berlin), der in enger Abstimmung mit dem Bundesministerium für Verkehr, Bau und Stadtentwicklung (BMVBS) auch die nationale ad hoc-AG Berufskraftfahrer (BKF) organisiert. In diesem seit Herbst 2012 bis voraussichtlich Frühjahr 2014 tagenden Gremium untersuchen Ministerien, Behörden, Industrie- und Handelskammern und weite Teile der BKF-Ausbilderschaft sowie Transport- und Logistikbranche gemeinsam den aktuellen Sachstand rund um das Thema Berufskraftfahrer.

Die Grundanforderungen  sowohl an die Grundqualifikation als auch an die  Weiterbildung von Berufskraftfahrern sind durch europäisches Recht (Richtlinie 2003/59) und das deutsche Berufsfahrerqualifikationsgesetz (BKrFQGS) vorgegeben. Die Hauptproblematik, welche die Umsetzung des geltenden Rechts behindere, liege in den extremen Unterschieden der Kraftfahreraus- und Weiterbildung in den einzelnen europäischen Mitgliedsstaaten, so der einhellige Tenor der Experten. Diese Unterschiede sorgten nicht nur für massive Wettbewerbsverzerrungen zwischen den einzelnen Staaten und Unternehmen, sondern gefährdeten auch die Verkehrssicherheit und damit die geordneten Verkehrsflüsse auf europäischen Straßen. Wir in Deutschland als dem Transitland Nr. 1 haben daran ein besonderes Interesse.

Eine bloße europaweite Standardisierung der Aus- und Weiterbildungskontrolle, wie sie von einer Reihe von Experten gefordert wurde, kann laut Vertretern von ProfDRV die Probleme jedoch nicht lösen. Vielmehr käme es darauf an, die Qualität der Programme europaweit zu verbessern. Um sowohl die gewünschten Qualitätssteigerungen als auch eine weitgehende Standardisierung zu erreichen, sei es laut ProfDRV ratsam, die nationalen Aus- und Weiterbildungen eng an den Kriterien des Europäischen Qualifikationsrahmens (EQR) auszurichten: Der Europäische Qualifikationsrahmen (EQR) solle gewissermaßen als Übersetzungsinstrument fungieren, der nationale Qualifikationen europaweit verständlich mache und so die grenzüberschreitende Mobilität von Beschäftigten und Lernenden und deren lebenslanges Lernen fördert.

Neben der Aus- und Weiterbildung wurden auch  andere Probleme angesprochen. Insbesondere der bereits akute Fahrermangel wurde zum Thema zahlreicher Diskussionen. Hier kam die Expertenrunde zu dem Schluss, dass es zwingend notwendig sei, den Beruf des Kraftfahrers für neue Bewerber attraktiver zu gestalten. Ein wichtiges Element dabei sei es, die Facharbeiterausbildung „Berufskraftfahrer“ weiter zu stärken und zu verbreiten. Gleichzeitig wurde betont, dass gerade das Fehlen von Karrieremöglichkeiten für Berufskraftfahrer erheblich zur geringeren Attraktivität des Berufes und damit zum Nachwuchsmangel beiträgt. An dieser Stelle sei ein Umdenken unausweichlich.

Durch den Workshop konnten die Inhalte der Diskussion auch zu den politischen Entscheidungsträgern getragen werden. So veranschaulichte der Geschäftsführer des VDA, Dr. Kay Lindemann, gegenüber Kirsten Lühmann (SPD) und Stephan Kühn (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen) die Relevanz des Themas für die herstellende Industrie: „Die Anforderungen an Berufskraftfahrer haben sich in den letzten Jahrzehnten grundlegend gewandelt, ihre Aufgaben wurden umfangreicher und anspruchsvoller. Daher ist eine wirkungsvolle und praxisnahe berufliche Aus- und Weiterbildung für Kraftfahrer heute wichtiger denn je. Nur mit einem hohen Qualitätsanspruch dieser Aus- und Weiterbildung können die Sicherheit auf europäischen Straßen erhöht, die Beschäftigungsfähigkeit der Fahrer durch regelmäßige Schulung sichergestellt und letztlich auch das Image des Berufsfeldes positiv unterstützt werden.“

Unter den Experten herrschte letztlich große Einigkeit und Zuversicht darüber, dass trotz der zahlreichen Hürden im Bereich von Administration und Verwaltung das Ziel zugunsten einer qualitativ hochwertigen und europaweit vergleichbaren Aus- und Weiterbildung erreichbar sei. Immerhin wird es nur so möglich sein, den Kraftfahrerberuf auch weiterhin attraktiv zu gestalten. Und nur auf diese Weise, so das Fazit dieses Arbeitstages, werde man den Anforderungen des 21. Jahrhunderts gerecht.  


Weiterführende Informationen zum Workshop unter: www.bkf-fachtagung2013.de

Präsentation und weitere Materialien vom Workshop stehen zur Verfügung unter: http://www.moving-roadsafety.com/

    

Dec 2012: "Transport meets Education" successfully in Bonn (DE)

(English text, German text)

On December 13 and 14 the European ProfDRV-project held its final conference „Transport meets Education“ at the Gustav-Stresemann-Institut in Bonn. Two years of project work are heading for their finals. Eleven partners from eight countries, from Hungary to Canada, have examined the effects of Directive 2003/59 EC and likewise made suggestions on how to improve professional driver qualification, in order to meet the requirements of this challenging profession.

Perfectly qualified drivers are the key to more safety on European roads. At the same time, they are a main factor to ensure the success of today’s transport industry. Directive 2003/59/EC aims at fulfilling these tasks. The aim of the final conference of project ProfDRV was, to put a row of open questions concerning professional driver qualification to discussion all over Europe. About 70 guests, among them transport companies, training providers, policy makers and competent bodies had the chance, to exchange with foreign colleagues directly at the conference and receive brand new information about the status quo in Europe.

One of the outcomes of the project is that directive 2003/59/EC does not bring a common minimal level of qualification for professional drivers in Europe. Instead, the chosen approach creates a colourful portfolio of different qualification levels. Thus, one demand of the project is, to make the implementation of the directive comparable across borders by using the learning outcomes approach according to the currently Europe-wide implemented European Qualifications Framework. The project partners suggest to review the directive based on the learning outcomes approach. That means among others to define in annex one of the directive, how a driver should be able to perform after training, instead of concentrating on input-factors like the content or the duration of the trainings.

At the same time, the projects results show that there are significant deficits in quality, concerning initial and periodic training, as far as the actual progress in knowledge, skills and competences of the (future) drivers is concerned through training. This results from missing awareness and consideration of the human factor in the directives implementation – quantity instead of quality. The project partners conclude that an embedding of directive 2003/59/EC into the different national vocational education and training systems and therefore the improvement of the quality is essential, in order to make professional driver qualification improve safety on European roads and cope with the shortage of qualified drivers. The project partners propose a dialog between transport and education for this purpose.

The conference was already the starting point of this dialogue: Mrs. Ulrike Buhrke responsible for the implementation of the professional driver directive at the German Ministry of Transport, and Peter Thiele responsible for basic policy issues at the German Ministry of Education and Research talked about current questions and showed their proposals for the near future. The following speeches of the project partners and experts showed, how different the situations are in Europe. Bureaucracy, a bottleneck in training, low quality and abuse are present all over Europe, as examples showed. Almost everywhere in Europe, there is a shortage of drivers which is not totally caused by economic factors. At the final conference session, the future of professional drivers was focalised. After all, all stakeholders have the same goal: to make the job of a professional driver more attractive and ensure safety on European roads.

    

   

Sep 2012: European ProfDRV expert workshop in Hungary

(English text, German text)

Pecs (HU), September 2012: On 7 September 2012, DEKRA Akademie KFT held a half-day expert-workshop in Pécs (HU). The main topic was loading and unloading. The interesting group of participants consisted of different groups of interest of the ProfDRV project. Thus, there were not only hauliers and drivers from Hungary represented, but also members of the local authorities and educational staff. In addition to that, the whole ProfDRV-project-consortium took part, among them the Hungarian hosts, participants from Germany, Austria, Great Britain, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Canada. Also three Turkish colleagues seized the opportunity to get to know the project.

The focus on loading and unloading should above all take emphasis on the requirements for drivers during these actions. Highlights for the international guests were contributions from Hungary, Great Britain and Canada. Tamas Hima from the Hungarian transport authorities gave an insight into qualification of professional drivers in Hungary. James Tillyer from FTA in Great Britain gave an interesting overview over the training of British enforcement authorities regarding load securing. A simple matrix lets the officers decide according to failure on load, if the driver can still drive or has to park his truck immediately. Angela Splinter from CTHRC in Canada showed the situation in her home country Canada. Also the North American state has to struggle with a lack of drivers. In her presentation, Angela Splinter showed the Canadian way to cope with the situation. With these competent presentations as a basis, the participants discussed their experiences in an open and above all skilful atmosphere.

Even delicate questions like controls of the authorities inside and outside the country did not remain untouched. Remarkably interesting was the view of a driver. Even, if he was sure that his truck was perfectly according to regulations, he still had an awkward feeling whenever the German BAG would signal to stop the truck. The discussion afterwards made the participants wonder, if really all Hungarian trucks are that well in order like the one driven by the present driver.

Another delicate topic was, how each EU-state implements directive 2003/59/EC. The consens was found quickly, although there are so many differences: The directive is a big step forward. Yet there are still massive differences in driver training. And apart from that, the directive walks on a fine line. On the one hand, Europe has to fight a lack of drivers, on the other hand could a common level of qualification even make it harder to become a professional driver. In the end, it is also a goal of the project, to show a possible way. In further workshops all across Europe, the focus should also lie on the implementation of the directive. It is an important step, to directly address the experts in all the EU member states, to make the findings of the ProfDRV-project public and help to find a solution for the lack of well-qualified drivers.

   

Sep 2012: A common European profile for professional drivers

(English text, German text)

Stuttgart (DE), September 2012: ProfDRV is heading for the finishing line. First goals have been reached. The project consortium has elaborated a core profile for professional drivers. Quality standards for professional drivers’ trainings are almost finalised.

Under the coordination of the University of Erfurt (DE), ProfDRV finalised a core profile for professional drivers, based on the idea of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF). Most important are thus the actual tasks and necessary competencies for professional drivers und not just the pure content of the training courses. This approach shall enable a common level of qualification for professional drivers all over Europe, even if training varies much, depending on each country. That leads to different outcomes – despite the common directive 2003/59/EC.

The basis for this profile is an analysis of professional drivers tasks, initiated by professor Helmut Niegemanns team at the University of Erfurt (DE) and DEKRA Akademie GmbH (DE). Out of this analysis, the core profile has been developed. It is divided into six fields of core tasks and four cross-cutting tasks. It starts with simply steering the truck and continues with competencies in load-securing and tour planning, working together with customers, keeping the own health through a healthy diet and exercise and continuously keeping trained to remain fit for the tasks of a professional driver.

Each field splits up into three basic areas: knowledge, abilities and competencies. That is just what the EQF requires. The project team worked in a very detailed way, as the many facets of the profile show. Accordingly, one of the learning outcomes within “manouvering“ is, the use of equipment like mirrors and cameras efficiently during manouvering. What seems to be logical at the first glimpse, you must not put aside in this responsible profession. In this respect, the area loading and unloading features the knowledge of the driver about physical basics of driving with cargo and, if necessary, being able to design a load distribution plan on their own. It is also important for the driver to eat healthy food and compensate the long hours in the driver’s seat with exercise – at least on the truck itself.

One of the fields – cooperation with customers – further defines, how a driver needs to be able to communicate with people in the loading areas in a competent and customer-oriented way. This calls for a general basic level of language skills, too. However, it is questionable, how high this should be.

In respect of the many different implementation approaches to directive 2003/59/EC, the drivers profile according to the European Qualifications Framework is very helpful. From country to country, drivers receive their certificate of professional competence on very different ways. If you put a learning-outcome-oriented profile in front of all that, which defines everything, what a driver needs to know, understand and needs to be able to do on completion of a course or after passing an exam, the different ways of achieving these outcomes lose impact to some extent.

  

Jan 2012: Half-time at ProfDRV-project

ProfDRV partners at London meeting in November 2012

(English text, German text)

Stuttgart (DE), January 2012: Half-time at ProfDRV. From November 30 to December 2 the project-team held its third project-meeting in London. Already there are several important results of the project-research.

An important aspect is, whether directive 2003/59/EC really can do something against driver shortness. Actually the interviews in the participating countries showed that the directive has very different effects on the branch in each country. Some see the directive as an additional burden for the transport sector. On a long term basis it could even lead to even more shortages. Others, however, see the directive as a chance. Therefore, driver shortness does not seem to be a question of quantity, but quality, and also combined to poor driver qualification for their profession. One problematic factor here would be the big differences between different countries, as far as the quality of vocational education and training and their assessment are concerned. This big difference makes it hard to implement the directive and actually use its full potential to mend driver shortness.

The actual aim of directive 2003/59/EC to set up a consistent core-qualification for professional drivers in Europe could not be reached so far, as the project results show. The reason for this failure is, how EU-countries interpret the directive and implement it.

As a next step, the project will use the European Qualification Framework (EQF) to work out suggestions and after all standards, in order to make it possible to compare core-qualifications and training properly. This way, the directive could reach its initial target. The EQF focuses on learning-outcomes. Vocational training in Europe differs so much. So EQF looks at the outcomes of the training. It is therefore only important, what a driver knows, understands and is able to do on completion of a learning process.

This is, where ProfDRV is back in the game. The project will propose a core-profile, which will define the quality-demands on professional drivers by such learning-outcomes. These might reach from the physical ability to drive a lorry to knowing, how to secure a load properly. This will make it possible to actually compare the qualification of professional drivers transnationally.

In November 2012 a final conference will take place. There, the project-results will be presented and discussed. The results so far can be found on www.project-profdrv.eu.

The ProfDRV project is based on the European directive 2003/59/EC for the qualification of professional drivers. Eleven partners from eight different countries take part in the project, among them Germany, Great-Britain, the Netherlands and Canada. The project ProfDRV will on the whole take 30 months (October 2010 – March 2013). The European Commission funds ProfDRV in the course of the Leonardo da Vinci programme. For questions about the project, please contact Eu-project.akademie@dekra.com.

     

Oct 2010: Professional Driver – A profession beyond pure driving!:

ProfDRV partnership at Kick-off meeting in Norderstedt (DE)

DEKRA Akademie gives the starting signal to international project on quality standards and possibilities of initial and further vocational education for professional drivers in Europe on October 11th

(English text, German text)

  
Stuttgart (DE), October 2010: From October 11th to 12th, in the DEKRA Akademie in Norderstedt the Kick-Off meeting of the large-scale, EU-wide research project ProfDRV took place. ProfDRV is funded by the European Union. The eleven partners from all over Europe and even Canada met in Norderstedt for the first time. These eleven partners from Great-Britain, Italy, Canada, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Hungary cover all project relevant areas, not only concerning geographic aspects, but also as far as competences are concerned. The partners of the project do not only come from different countries, but also from different work areas, as far as initial and further vocational education of professional drivers are concerned. There are training providers, research institutes and trade associations. Under the leadership of DEKRA Akademie GmbH they work together on the research on quality standards and possibilities of initial and further vocational education for professional drivers all over Europe. The project aims at the development of common suggestions on how to cope with the lack of qualified professional drivers in Europe. Further, the project wants to account for the European goal of equal levels of education and training for professional drivers all over Europe.

ProfDRV is based on the European directive 2005/59/EG for the qualification of professional drivers. This gives the project reason to research and compare the implementation of the directive in different European countries, but also further offers on education and training for professional drivers. Many different aspects will be integrated in the research. Among these will be the training content, legal regulations, acceptance and implementation, but also further education pathways and therefore professional options for drivers.

In order to bring forward an equal level of education and training for professional drivers in Europe, the project will use the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) as a common European concept. The EQF aims at making qualifications in Europe comparable by relating them to different levels, according to their learning outcomes. ProfDRV analyses the tasks implemented by professional drivers and the necessary quality standards and describes it in the categories of the EQF, which are knowledge, skills and competences. These descriptions will be an up to date picture of the evolving and raising requirements for professional drivers in Europe. They are thus not only a basis for the comparison of different qualifications, but also a recommendation, how the economy could thwart the lack of qualified drivers.

The accumulated data and research findings give a basis for the project partners to propose standards for education and training of European professional drivers. During several consultations nationally and all over Europe together with representatives of the different groups of interest, these standards will be discussed and developed even further. But also other topics will play their part in the project: validation of knowledge, skills, competences, which are acquired by the professional drivers during their work and also the esteem of the profession in general and how to take influence in it via vocational education and training.

The project ProfDRV will on the whole take 30 months (October 2010 – March 2013). The European Commission funds ProfDRV in the course of the Leonardo da Vinci programme. For questions about the project, please contact Eu-project.akademie@dekra.com.