More progress needs to be made when it comes to clearing the backlog of people waiting on driving tests, both for the full and provisional licence, according to Roscommon-Galway TD Michael Fitzmaurice.

As part of the Taoiseach’s Covid address this week, there was no mention of whether the Road Safety Authority (RSA) could progress expanding the number of theory tests it is facilitating beyond 25,000 to the 50,000 threshold previously discussed.

Speaking on the matter, Fitzmaurice said: “The speed at which the backlog in full driving tests and theory tests are being carried out need to be sped up.

“People waiting on these tests have been left in limbo for in excess of 18 months in some cases as a result of the pandemic.

“Every week we have young people or their parents contacting our office who are frustrated at receiving yet another email notification that their test date has been pushed back until August or September.

“Its estimated that there 120,000 learners waiting on theory tests and over 70,000 people waiting on a full driving test.

“The fact of the matter is that people are losing jobs as a result of not having these licences, through no fault of their own.

“We were previously told that the number of driver theory tests would be stretched to 50,000 a month to clear the backlog, but there is no indication of that happening at present.

“While we await the arrival of new testers, we must be prepared to extend opening hours and open all of the test centers full time to get through the backlog,” he concluded.

For further information contact Michael Fitzmaurice at 086-1914565

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