The new changes to the practical driving test will be going live on Monday 4th December 2017. With the aim of reducing the number of young drivers involved in fatal collisions. We recently ran a survey to see what people thought towards the upcoming changes. Surprisingly, only 64% said that the changes are a good addition to the current driving test. With a driving instructor saying that the changes are “going in the right direction to produce better drivers.” Not all driving instructors are welcoming the changes, however, with one driving instructor stating that “They are a step backwards and actually make the test easier. Which is crazy considering it was too easy to start with!”.
So, what are the changes?
- Learners will need to follow directions from a sat nav during the ‘independent driving’ part of the test, which will be increased from 10 minutes to 20 minutes.
- One show me tell me question will be asked inside the car, such as demonstrating the use of the rear heated screen.
- Replace current manoeuvres such as ‘reverse around a corner’ with more real-life scenarios, for example, driving into and reversing out of a parking bay.
Here’s a quick video that explains how the test will work from Monday 4th December.
A spokesperson for the DVSA has said “using a satnav goes some way to addressing concerns that inexperienced drivers are easily distracted, which is one of the main causes of crashes. We’re moving with technology and the technology that new drivers will be using.”
A driving instructor we spoke with felt that including the satnav “detracts from route planning, removes awareness of surroundings and potentially becomes another bit of technology to be used whilst on the move.” Not everyone is against the satnav, 75% of driving instructors we spoke to think it’s a positive change.
Using a satnav must be done with care and attention to the road ahead, with 1 in 14 drivers admitting having a ‘near-miss’ caused by the distraction of a sat nav. Examiners will be testing a pupils ability to listen to a sat nav without being distracted. DVSA Chief Executive, Gareth Llewellyn, said: “Great Britain’s roads are among the safest in the world. But there is scope to do more to keep road users safe – particularly newly qualified drivers. Making sure the test better assesses a driver’s ability to drive safely and independently is part of our strategy to help every driver through a lifetime of safe driving”.
What do you think to the changes? Have your say!
Come and join us on Monday 4th December when we’ll be hosting live chats on Twitter and our website on to answer any of your questions and tackle any of your concerns surrounding the new changes!