DVSA Update: Driver testing services in Wales: Lifting of some COVID-19 test restrictions

DVSA Update: Driver testing services in Wales: Lifting of some COVID-19 test restrictions

DVSA is lifting a number of COVID-19 driving and theory test restrictions in Wales on Monday 7 March in line with some Welsh Government restrictions ending from 28 February. The changes in Wales are:

  • face coverings are no longer a legal requirement for candidates taking their theory test.
  • driving tests will no longer end early unless the candidate’s driving is so poor it is a risk to their safety and that of other road users – in line with the pre-COVID-19 policy

You need to make your pupils aware of these forthcoming changes, especially if you have made their practical test booking for them.

The current driving and theory tests safety measures in Scotland remain in place and we will let you know of any changes.

COVID-19 restrictions affecting driving and theory tests in England ended on 1 March.

Face coverings

From 7 March, face coverings are no longer a legal requirement for candidates taking their theory test in Wales.

Your pupils will no longer have to let us know if they cannot wear a face covering in advance of their theory test from Monday 7 March.

The Welsh Government strongly recommends that your pupils still wear face coverings even where they do not have to. COVID-19 is still a risk, and we must continue to do what we can to limit the spread.

Face coverings continue to be a legal requirement on driving lessons and tests, including ADI practical tests and standard checks.

Candidates must continue to tell us if they are exempt from wearing a face covering when they book their driving test.

Your pupil’s test will not take place without a face covering if they do not tell us they are exempt ahead of their test.

We will be contacting everyone with a driving test booking in Wales to confirm this. If you booked a test for your pupils, you need to let them know about these changes.

If public health conditions continue to improve, this legal requirement could be lifted in Wales by the end of March.

Ending driving tests early

From Monday 7 March, our driving examiners will no longer end tests early and they can continue after a candidate has committed a serious or dangerous fault to give them the full-test experience.

Tests will only be terminated early if the driving examiner assesses that the candidate’s driving is so poor it risks their safety and that of other road users. This is in line with our pre-COVID-19 policy.

ADIs sitting in on tests

It is still not possible for ADIs or accompanying drivers to sit in on driving tests in Wales as only essential car sharing can be undertaken under the Welsh Government’s current guidance.

We will keep this under review.

Clean vehicles

We will no longer be cancelling driving tests if the inside of a vehicle is not clean.

However, we continue to encourage you to clean and tidy the inside of your vehicle when presenting it for a driving test in line with good hygiene.

It will be optional for examiners to wipe down surfaces in test vehicles or ventilate these vehicles during tests.

Pupils testing positive for COVID-19

Any of your pupils who are self-isolating must not attend their driving test and should follow the latest guidance from the Welsh Government.

You or your pupil should email us at customerservices@dvsa.gov.uk with the subject title ‘COVID-19 short notice cancellation’ to rearrange their driving test.

You or your pupil will need to include the following information in the email:

  • their driving licence number
  • their driving test booking reference number

We will then contact you or your pupil to help rearrange the test. Your pupil will not have to pay again.

Taking rapid lateral flow tests

We encourage your pupils to take a rapid lateral flow test before their driving test if they do not have COVID-19 symptoms. We are asking that they do this on the day of their driving test, before they leave home.

Find out more about taking a rapid lateral flow test before taking a driving test.

Thank you for your support

We know this has been a very challenging period for the driver and rider training industry.

The changes we have made to our services have had an impact across the industry, but you have shown resilience, supported our colleagues and responded positively to our engagement.

We want to thank you for taking the necessary action to help reduce the spread of COVID, and protect our colleagues.

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