DVSA Driving Test Examiner Strike: Everything You Need To Know

LATEST UPDATE (12:10 18/10/2021)

The DVSA test examiner strike originally scheduled for 11th–12th October was pushed back to 18th–19th October. Now the DVSA has announced the strikes are suspended indefinitely as discussions continue.

Here’s the latest official statement from the DVSA:

The Public and Commercial Service (PCS) has agreed to suspend industrial action while talks continue. This means there will be no industrial action on Monday 18 and Tuesday 19 October 2021 and action short of strike (work to rule) will not begin from Wednesday 20 October.

Keep on learning as you were and be sure to check back regularly for the latest news — we’ll update this blog as we get any info.

If you’re a PassMeFast student, we’ll email you as soon as we know if and when the strike is happening, and whether your course will be affected.

DVSA practical test examiners are set to take industrial action on the 11th and 12th October. This means that hundreds of driving tests are likely to be cancelled and rescheduled for later dates. So, what does a DVSA strike mean for learner drivers with tests booked on these days, and for the industry in general?

Here’s a fast summary of the situation up to now:

DVSA plan to tackle backlog by adding more tests to daily schedule

With a whopping backlog of 500,000 tests after the Covid-19 pandemic, the DVSA want to increase the daily amount of tests each examiner takes from 7 to 8 per day.

This hasn’t gone down well with the examiners and their union—PCS (Public and Commercial Services Union)—who have argued that adding more tests will pile too much pressure on examiners. They say that the increase puts the learner driver in danger because the examiner won’t be fully alert and ready to take action if anything goes wrong during the test.

With 92% of PCS members voting to strike, it’s safe to say that most examiners are in agreement that the move isn’t in their best interests.

What happens next?

If the DVSA stick to their guns and increase the amount of tests to 8 per day, the strikes will probably go ahead. But if the DVSA back down and agree to keep the current schedule of 7 tests per day, the strike is unlikely to take place.

We’ll keep a close eye on the situation and keep you updated as we get more news. These things often go pretty close to the wire, so a solid decision might not be made until a few days before the 11th October.

What happens to my test if the DVSA strike happens?

We can’t know for certain until the DVSA announces their plan. However, this isn’t the first time that DVSA test examiners have striked, so we can take an educated guess at what will happen.

Based on previous strikes, it’s unlikely that every examiner will take industrial action which means that some tests might go ahead. It will all depend on whether or not your particular examiner has chosen to strike. But, to hazard a guess, the majority of tests on 11th–12th October will be rescheduled for later dates. With the current backlog, these tests might be quite a lot later than October. Certainly not ideal given the current state of the industry…

If you’re a PassMeFast customer with a practical test booked on 11th or 12th October, we’ll be in touch once we have confirmation on whether or not the strikes are happening.

And, if your test is rescheduled to a far-away date, we’ll enter you into our fast-track test system to secure a new test ASAP.

We’re keeping our fingers crossed that the top dogs at DVSA and the test examiners come to a resolution so the strikes are cancelled. Either way, we’ll keep you updated on our blog!

By Sam Plant

Sam spent the first 2 years of his PassMeFast career with the Customer Experience team, and now he’s sharing his driving experience with the rest of the world! When not writing, you can find Sam reading, playing games, or following Port Vale.

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