More than 30,000 people waiting to sit driver theory test

The figures have been revealed just days after theory test centres reopened all over the country. They shut in mid-March due to the coronavirus lockdown.
More than 30,000 people waiting to sit driver theory test
Transport Minister, Shane Ross
Transport Minister, Shane Ross

More than 30,000 people are waiting to sit their driver theory test.

The figures have been revealed just days after theory test centres reopened all over the country. They shut in mid-March due to the coronavirus lockdown.

The RSA anticipates it should be able to clear the backlog by August but it has prompted calls for temporary test centres to be established to ensure people are not left waiting.

A total of 30,449 people are currently waiting to sit tests, including more than 600 in Cork and 567 in Limerick.

The figures were released to Labour TD Seán Sherlock.

The Cork East TD said Transport Minister Shane Ross needs to take steps to accelerate the process for those waiting to sit their test.

"There is clearly a backlog now for those wishing to sit the theory test," he said.

"The recent lockdown would have given people ample time to prepare for a theory test and that backlog needs to be cleared now where possible. I have asked the Minister for Transport to consider introducing temporary pop-up centres to deal not only with the theory test backlog but with the NCT and driving test delays that are accruing since the lockdown."

NCT and theory test centres reopened on Monday but there is still no planned date for the resumption of driving tests. In mid-May, the Irish Examiner reported 27,500 people had been left in limbo by the cancellation of driving tests.

Responding to Mr Sherlock, Transport Minister Shane Ross said his Department is guided by national public health advice.

"A date for the resumption of driver testing services is currently being examined.

However, the resumption of driver tests raises particular difficulties due to the need to have two people in close proximity in a confined space, for a considerable period of time. I anticipate for this reason that the driving test may be one of the last of the RSA services to resume," Mr Ross said.

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