Learner drivers could face longer waiting times of more than 20 weeks to take their driving test

Monday, 24th October, 2016

Changes to the driving test proposed for 2017 will increase waiting times to 20 weeks in many parts of the country warn Approved Driving Instructors National Joint Council.

The Joint Council fears a huge surge in people wanting to take the old test and this would send waiting times sky high.

Under the changes new manoeuvres will be added to the test to prepare drivers for ‘real-life’ scenarios to reduce road accidents.

Drivers will be asked to follow directions from a sat nav during the ‘independent driving’ part which will be increased from 10 to 20 minutes.

driving instuctor

The ‘reverse around a corner’ and ‘turn in the road’ manoeuvres will be replaced with more real-life situations, such as driving into and reversing out of a parking bay.

And one of the two vehicle safety questions (known as the ‘show me, tell me’ questions) will be asked while the candidate is driving, such as asking them to use the rear heated screen.

The DVSA, the people who run the driving test, says “There is no evidence to suggest that the proposed changes to the driving test will increase waiting times and instructors have been very supportive.
“Over the past three years demand has increased by over 200,000 tests and we’re working hard to make more available. We’ve recruited 156 new driving examiners, and are recruiting more, we are also looking to make more tests available during evenings and weekends.”

Already Learners in some areas of the UK are being told the next available test date is in January or February next year.