The UK government has announced plans to help to tackle the shortage of lorry drivers by creating an extra 50,000 lorry tests.
Changes to tests will come into force as soon as possible. They follow a public consultation over the summer, which saw thousands of respondents, including industry leaders, support the move as a positive step to help the sector tackle the lorry driver shortage currently affecting countries around the world.
These changes will not change the standard of driving required to drive an HGV, with road safety continuing to be of paramount importance. Any driver who does not demonstrate utmost competence will not be granted a licence. All car drivers will also still be encouraged to undertake training to tow trailers and caravans.
We’ve already delivered 50% more tests than were available before the pandemic, but today’s additional measures will deliver yet more tests.
The consultation received over 9,500 responses and most respondents supported the proposals.
Under the new proposals learner lorry drivers will be able to take an articulated lorry test without the need to pass a rigid lorry test first once the legislation has changed.
Likewise, learner bus and coach drivers will be able to take a bus and coach test with a trailer, rather than having to pass a test without a trailer first.
This will not change the standard of driving required to drive a lorry.