The Aontú Trim Area Representative, Dave Boyne, is calling for a second driving test centre in Meath. This follows the most recent figures released to Aontú from the RSA following a Parliamentary Question to the Minister for Transport.
Boyne said “ The RSA have confirmed there are currently 2,350 people waiting for driving tests at the Navan Test Centre with a wait time of 29 weeks. This means if an applicant in Meath was to apply now they wouldn’t be called until around 13 May, 2024 at the earliest. There are 695 tests scheduled. 1009 people were deemed not eligible which usually indicates the tester has not received the cert from the driving instructor to say the customer has done the 12 lessons as a possible reason. 1411 tests have been paused which can be the result of an applicant possibly having been advised by an instructor they are not ready to take the test. This amounts to a total of 5464 in the system in Meath alone with just one driving test centre”.
Boyne continued “It’s a shocking length of time to be waiting. We know from Eurostat that nearly 70% of young adults aged 25-29 are living at home with their parents, we’re way out of line with other EU countries on this. Given these statistics, delays with driving tests are most impacting parents, who until their son or daughter sits the test have to either drive or accompany them to work or college each day. I know of a case here in Meath where a young person is an apprentice working in the trade sector who needs to take a test urgently to be able to drive independently to get to his places of work and site locations. Waiting on his test is limiting his ability to carry out his role especially during this time of a housing crisis where his skills are very much needed”.
“I’m aware that the Aontú leader, Deputy Peadar Tóibín, recently proposed to the Minister for Transport that he consider outsource to the private sector, in line with measures taken by his Department in 2005 to reduce the backlog of driving test wait times. The Minister responded that there were no plans to outsource to the private sector, but that his department had given approval for a further recruitment of up to 75 additional driver testers. What we need in Meath is a second driving test centre to tackle this problem with more driving testers, driving tests at the weekends and on public holidays so as to help clear this backlog”, Boyne concluded.