The UK driving test which was created following the passing of the Road Traffic Act 1934 and will soon be celebrating its 80th birthday. Driving tests began in April 1935 and the test was made compulsory that June.
Before test centres were introduced, instructors would meet candidates at car parks, railway stations and similar areas and they would assess motorcyclists by standing at the roadside and watching them ride around the likes of a town square or common.
The test has gone through many changes throughout its history, most notably the introduction of the theory test in 1996 and the hazard perception element in 2002. Despite this there are questions over whether the 80-year-old test is still fit for purpose particularly since new drivers, specifically young drivers, remain the most risk on the road.
It is argued that this examination method doesn’t remain relevant today since young people can take their driving test the day after their 17th birthday if they’ve passed their theory test beforehand; provided they drive well for the 40 minutes, they will be out on the road.
A report was produced on graduated licences was produced last year and the changes were to be implemented this year. However, these changes have been stalled, and there currently isn’t a date to implement them.