Plans to tackle Kildare driving test backlog says Senator

Learner drivers waiting for a test in Kildare could be facing one of the longest wait times in the country.

Naas Test Centre has been listed as the fifth test centre with the longest wait times behind centres in Cork and Dublin with 4,945 on the wait list.  Due to the Covid-19 shutdown, tests have not been taking place in recent months, with the wait time now estimated to be 25 weeks. The government has decided on the safe and gradual and phased reopening  of some driver services through the Road Safety Authority from the 10th of May. To help deal with the Senator Fiona O’Loughlin has said that as many as 20 ‘pop-up’ testing centres are being considered to tackle the backlog.

“To help deal with the backlog of tests the RSA have recruited 40 more testers who are currently being trained and will be deployed from June,” said Senator O’Loughlin. “Plans are also advancing to recruit a further 40 testers and to add up to 20 driving test centres.” At present, only essential workers are eligible to sit a driving test.

The priorities will be supporting essential workers by allowing the resumption of driving instruction for this category ( up to now only essential workers who had completed their first 12 EDT lessons could access pre test instruction), the resumption of driving instruction and testing for motorcyclists  And the gradual easing of the backlog, prioritizing non-essential workers who have been waiting the longest. More than 100,000 learner drivers are waiting for their tests nationally.