Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Questions (309)

Michael Healy-Rae


309. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if a matter (details supplied) regarding the driver test will be considered; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12659/19]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

Driver testers, employed by the Road Safety Authority (RSA), must complete training as set out in a series of EU directives on driving testing and licensing, the current main directive being EU Directive 2006/126/EC. This directive sets minimum driving test standards, training and quality assurance for driver testers. Testers have to undergo continuous monitoring of the application of Driving Test Standards, by way of regular and ongoing supervision.

A Driving instructor's opinion of a learner driver's competency is only that - an opinion. Regardless of the experience or capability of an instructor, one instructor's opinion may differ greatly than another. An effective driving test provides learner drivers with a consistent evaluation process which ensures that candidates have attained a sufficient level of competency to drive unaccompanied. If a candidate's nervousness is of such a level that it adversely affects their driving test, they may not be ready to sit the test and may require further instruction.

The RSA has a Quality Assurance Policy which ensures that the practical driving test experience is of a consistent high quality, regardless of where it is carried out or who carries it out, and always produces valid and reliable results. A key element of this Policy is the continuous monitoring of the application of Driving Test Standards. This is done by way of regular and ongoing supervision which is in compliance with the Directive.