Clarity needed for licence tests

With Regional Victoria moving to step three, an urgent resumption of licence testing must be made a priority, Member for South West Coast and Shadow Minister for Rural Roads Roma Britnell says.

Ms Britnell said the State Government must immediately resume testing in regional VicRoads locations, with extra appointments made available.

She said the backlog of testing would be significant given testing had been shut down for extended periods twice this year.

“All VicRoads offices need to be conducting tests at least five days a week as a minimum to try and clear the backlog,” She said.

“Offices like Portland, Hamilton and Ararat only test on limited days – to help clear this massive backlog they all need to be operating five days a week at a minimum and larger offices like Warrnambool could extend to weekend testing.

“The State Government needs to explore recruiting driving instructors as licence accessors. These are people who are accredited to teach our kids to drive so it’s shouldn’t be to much of an ask to have them accredited to conduct licence tests.”

Ms Britnell also said Labor’s failure to allow for Learners permit tests to be conducted online should not mean safety for young drivers is compromised to clear the backlog.

“The Premier has stated he would consider reducing the mandatory 120 hours of driving experience for L Plate drivers to help clear the backlog – that’s not an acceptable compromise” Ms Britnell said. “The requirement for 120 hours of driving experience is not an arbitrary number; it is the number shown to provide the greatest risk reduction for new drivers, it could save their life.

“Labor should have plans in place to clear the backlog that involves more testing appointments and an increase in testing staff.

“Compromising the safety of young people on our roads is not an option and never should be.”

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