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COVID-19: Learner drivers ‘rusty’ as long suspension of lessons and testing ends | UK News

Learners taking tests this week say they feel “rusty” behind the wheel, but the pressure is on as anyone who fails could have to wait months for another attempt.

Non-urgent driving tests have been banned since early January due to coronavirus pandemic but they resume in England and Wales on Thursday, in Northern Ireland on Friday and Scotland on May 6 at the earliest.

Among the preparations is Jade Bone, 24, of Southampton, who says she is “quite anxious” after more than three months without driving.

A ban on driving lessons was only lifted in England last week and Ms Bone told the PA News Agency: “In my first lessons, I was really rusty.

“While I haven’t forgotten how to do things, my general driving confidence is not what it used to be. I’m a little more hesitant now. I doubt myself.”

Side view of black car driving fast.
The number of driver’s licenses among young people has fallen to its lowest level on record

Ms Bone’s test is booked for Thursday, but if she fails, she might not have another chance until August, due to a backlog.

“It’s pretty frustrating and a scary prospect, especially because it’s an expensive thing to do, to have lessons,” she said.

His instructor, Rob Fenn of RED Driving School, said several of his students were “ready for the test” in January, but had “stepped back” during their long wait to be able to drive and pass their test.

“They’re a little rusty,” he explained.

“They need a few lessons to get back to where they were before the lockdown.”

Due to high demand, many driving tutors are full, with Mr. Fenn claiming to have heard from nine new students in the past five days, an “unheard of” rate.

The suspension of classes and tests earlier this year saw the number of driver’s licenses among young people fall to their lowest level on record.

Only 2.97 million people aged 16 to 25 in Britain have a …

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This notice was published: 2021-04-19 03:05:00