Have your say on changes to the driving test
After a lot of research, the DfT has launched a consultation into changes to the driving test that will hopefully make new drivers much safer and more prepared for hitting the road alone.
What's wrong with the driving test we have now?
For some time, driving instructors, road safety experts and learners themselves have been saying the current driving test isn't representative of what new drivers will actually face when they pass their test.
For a start, they'll have been nowhere near a motorway and the first time they do venture onto one, they're very likely to be alone.
The manoeuves covered in the driving test are also quite unrealistic, leaving out important situations drivers will have to navigate in the real world - a much more messy and unpredictable place than the driving test conditions.
What's up for debate?
There's a general move towards testing on things that will actually happen rather than 'perfect world' driving. While motorway driving isn't being proposed at this stage, the government is also considering making it legal for learners to drive on motorways with a driving instructor at some point in the future.
The government is proposing these changes:
- Upping the independent driving section ("follow the signs for the town centre") from 10 to 20 minutes
- Getting candidates to follow directions from a satnav
- Replacing the reverse around a corner and turn in the road with more real-life situations like driving into and reversing out of a bay
- Asking 1 of the 2 show me, tell me questions while the candidate is driving - like getting them to turn on the back window heater