Do we ditch the masks?
As part of the Governments plans to move to step 4 of the roadmap, they plan to ditch legal Covid rules in favour of a more relaxed approach allowing people to make their own decisions based on the risk. Covid-19 still poses a dangerous threat to us all, especially the clinically vulnerable. This means that from 19th July 2021, you can choose whether to wear a face covering or not in public places and to socially distance.
Does this affect driving lessons?
While I welcome a more relaxed approach to wearing face coverings and would love to not have to wear them in the car during driving lessons, I must put the safety of my customers first. I will continue to ask my students to wear face masks in the car during driving lessons unless they have a medical reason not to. Having spoken to all my current students, there have been no complaints. In face, every single one of them have agreed to continue wearing them without question.
How will this affect testing?
The DVSA have announced that the rules for testing during the pandemic will not change on July 19th. Candidates turning up for a theory test or driving test will still be expected to wear a face covering during the test. In the interests of safety, this protects staff as well as candidates.
You must not attend your driving test if you have symptoms of Coronavirus or if you have been told to isolate.
If you cannot go for your test because you’re self-isolating, email the DVSA with the subject title ‘COVID-19 short notice cancellation’.
Include 2 of the following in your email:
- your driving licence number
- your theory test pass certificate number
- your driving test booking reference
The DVSA can be contacted at [email protected] who will rearrange your test for you where appropiate.
Find out more about how Covid-19 is affecting tests below
The Backlog Continues…
Since the easing of the restrictions following lockdown 3.0, there has been a surge in demand for driving lessons and tests. When the pandemic hit, there was around 400,000 driving tests cancelled and following the various restrictions and lockdowns, some test continued to be rescheduled. Coupled with the surge in demand following the end of lockdown 3.0 the backlog of driving tests in England continues to cause learners to need to wait around 290 weeks to tanker a driving test.
At the time of writing this, there is no availability for driving tests until week ending 26th December 2021. Most learners may now be waiting until 2022 before they can take a driving test.
It’s not such a bad thing
While it may be a while before you can take a driving test in the UK, it does give learner drivers the chance to improve and hone-in on their current skills and ability to drive safe on the roads. The extra practise time can help those who are not confident or are not quite up to the standard to pass a driving test yet. Statistically, you have only 45.9% chance of passing a driving test first time. This jumps up above 50% for second time passes. If you have longer to practise, then in theory it should give you a better chance of passing first time.