What Is Midas Training: The Essentials

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The Minibus Driver Awareness Scheme, MiDAS, is a training and registration scheme for drivers of minibuses in the UK.

Following a number of serious accidents where drivers and passengers using minibuses were killed or serious injured in the 1990s the government, with the involvement of the Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents and the Community Transport Association, created a programme to train and assess the competence of drivers. It may optionally include certification to use tail lifts and adaptations for wheelchairs that permit the passenger to travel safely whilst remaining in the chair.

Most volunteer drivers driving for community organisations and schools are now required to have and maintain their MiDAS qualification in order to carry out their duties, no matter what their normal driving licence may already entitle them to drive a minibus, minibus training for schools is essential.


There are many potential benefits of MiDAS training, including:

  • Increased passenger safety
  • Improved passenger comfort
  • Increased staff confidence
  • Reduced staff stress
  • Potential reduction in vehicle running costs
  • Potential reduction in insurance premiums

Training the trainers

The driver assessor/trainer is appointed by organisations joining the scheme. They will assess the competence to drive a minibus of all new delegates. These trainers will have good driving and teaching skills. MiDAS will assess the skills of trainers, after which MiDAS trains each trainer in up to 4 modules:

  • Driver assessment: how to judge whether drivers are competent to drive a minibus
  • Training drivers in basic minibus skills: how to train drivers with the skills and information which they need to know when driving a standard minibus
  • Additional training for drivers of an accessible minibus: how to train drivers with the additional skills and information they need when driving an accessible minibus
  • Refresher Training for drivers: how to provide Refresher Training for existing drivers

Trainers will also have their presentation and training skills assessed and receive a certificate on successful completion of the course appropriate to the skills they have learned.

MiDAS training course content

Module One: Standard certificate

This is a one-day course during which you will receive training in the skills required to drive a minibus. A pre-requisite is a full English driving licence and driving for at least 2 years. A typical course includes training in:

  • A thorough knowledge of the legal responsibilities of a minibus driver and duty of care
  • Depart of Transport codes of practice in safe carriage of passengers
  • Good practice in passenger comfort
  • Health and Safety at work for minibus drivers
  • Manoeuvring of vehicles
  • Vehicle checks and basic eyesight test
  • Defensive driving techniques
  • Minibus fire and evacuation procedures

Typically, at the end of the training, delegates will be asked to complete a test paper of 20 questions to confirm what they have learned earlier.

At a later date, the delegate will undergo a 1.5-hour road driving assessment which includes a wide range of road conditions. This session will usually include:

  • Basic eyesight check
  • Basic vehicle familarisation
  • Commentary on driving
  • Driving assessment

On successful completion of the MiDAS training, delegates receive a MiDAS certificate.

Module Two: Accessible certificate

This is a half day course. It is for those who intend to carry wheelchair users and provides training of passenger lifts and the securing of wheelchairs. Delegates will typically cover:

  • Safe use of ramps and tail lifts
  • Wheelchair and passenger restraint equipment
  • Department of Transport codes of practice on safe carriage of passengers in wheelchairs
  • Good practice on passenger assistance
  • Legal requirements

Typically, at the end of this session, delegates will be asked to complete a short written test.

Refresher Training (standard and accessible)

To retain the MiDAS qualification and certificate, MiDAS drivers must attend a short refresher course every 4 years. Refresher Training is designed to maintain and improve the overall standard of MiDAS. MiDAS trainers also receive refresher training.

During refresher training you will:

  • Meet and share experiences with other drivers
  • Offer feedback on the scheme, which will influence the future development of MiDAS and refresher training sessions
  • Receive good information on changes to legislation and good practice which have emerged since you attended your initial training
  • Receive refresher training on key MiDAS training topics
  • Have the opportunity to ask any questions about MiDAS
  • Take a theory test assessment at the end of your refresher training

You will also be required to take another driving assessment as part of your refresher training. However, in certain circumstances, such as you being convicted of a driving offence or having been involved in a road traffic accident, your organisation may decide to re-assess your driving skills earlier. It is up to your organisation to decide when this is appropriate.

After you have satisfactorily completed Refresher Training you will receive a new certificate. This will include passing a theory assessment and a driving assessment. Your new certificate will be valid for another four years. At the end of this period you will need to attend a Refresher Training session again. You will receive details of the arrangements for this nearer the time.

If you do not attend refresher training then you will no longer be able to drive any minibuses owned or operated by MiDAS members, including your own organisation’s minibuses, once your current certificate expires.

Who provides MiDAS training courses?

There are many organisations that provide MiDAS training courses, including us here at Accessible Ltd. Get in touch with us on 01282 504455 or learn more about our MiDAS training courses here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a useful list of FAQs courtesy of the Community Transport Association.

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Pendle Innovation Centre
Brook Street, Nelson,
Lancashire, BB9 9PU

Tel: 01282 504455
Mobile: 07969 866627
Email: info@accessibleltd.co.uk

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