Driving test failure rate up
Manama, June 12, 2007
A failure rate of over 60 per cent of learner drivers on their first test is causing a backlog and a shortage of driving instructors, it was revealed.
"Under normal circumstances, there would be sufficient numbers of instructors to handle the numbers of potential drivers," said Traffic Director-General Colonel Shaikh Khalifa bin Hassan Al Khalifa.
"Unfortunately, the failure rate of people taking the first test is well over 60 per cent,' he pointed out.
While the minimum numbers of training hours that learner drivers have to take with a driving instructor is 22, people are still failing due to lack of experience, he added.
"Many people insist on taking the test although they do not have sufficient ability. Some may never gain that ability, but still insist on taking the test,' said Shaikh Khalifa.
He said that this issue needed to be rectified before any plans to increase the number of instructors.
'Currently, there are 362 male and 25 female driving instructors, making a total of 387,' said Shaikh Khalifa.
'There are plans to change the system, to include a far more meaningful theory test, which will help alleviate the problem, and help ease the waiting list for practical tests.
'Other plans revolve around updating the facilities at the National Driving Centre and raising the skills of the instructors. These issues have been treated with a great degree of respect for all concerned, so that no one will be adversely affected.'
In response to a recent letter published in the Gulf Daily News, in which a woman had been searching for a driving instructor for four months without success, Director of the Traffic Cultural Directorate Major Moosa Isa Al Doseri said that it showed that the entire system of driving instruction, testing and licensing required a complete review.
'A review of the system includes looking at all kinds of alternatives, including a separate agency,' he said. TradeArabia News Service