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15th Feb 2021

Trade union hits out at driving tests cancelled because weather was “too cold”

Rudi Kinsella

driving test

The Unite trade union has strongly criticised the Road Safety Authority.

Unite, a trade union which represents some driving instructors in Ireland, has strongly criticised the Road Safety Authority (RSA) for allegedly cancelling driving tests because it was “too cold”.

It said that recent figures suggested there was a backlog of around 64,000 driving tests, with waiting times currently at around 25 weeks, an increase from six weeks just 12 months ago.

Unite claim that essential workers are unable to secure tests due to backlogs, and need a full licence to carry out their essential work.

Unite Regional Officer Jean O’Dowd said: “During Level 5 restrictions, only essential workers can sit their tests.

“But even they have literally been frozen out by the Road Safety Authority, which has been arbitrarily cancelling tests due to low temperatures – despite the fact that weather conditions were dry and safe.”

The Chair of Unite’s Approved Driving Instructor Branch Dominic Brophy added: “We have been receiving multiple reports from ADIs that tests, for essential workers, are being cancelled due to the RSA testers feeling that it is ‘too cold’ to slightly roll down the car windows (which is part of their Covid safety protocols) for a test.

“The backlog is big enough as it is, without cancelling tests for no good reason – especially for essential workers who we all depend on during this pandemic.”