Friday, April 07, 2006


The joke that is the Irish driving test

We let anyone on our roads! The number of deaths on our roads is a massive concern right now for the people of this country but while we try to figure out a way of curtailing the number of fatalities that occur, the rest of the world is laughing out loud at out stupidity.

A Canadian news site's Weird News section has picked up on recent statistics revealed by the Department of Transport that more than 400,000 Irish motorists have never passed a driving test but are still allowed to drive.

As the site pointed out:

"The Transport Department statistics found 410,602 unqualified drivers who, because of a peculiarity of Irish road law, are issued "provisional" driving licences anyway.

"A colossal backlog in Ireland's driver-testing system accounts for about a third of the drivers, who receive provisional licences while waiting up to a year to take a test.

"The remaining two-thirds are drivers who have failed one or more tests, or never bothered to sign up for one, yet keep getting issued provisional licences. They expire after two years and aren't supposed to be continually renewed, yet often are.

""Some of these drivers have been driving unqualified for up to 10 years," said Roisin Shortall of the opposition Labour party, who requested the government figures.

"The question of Ireland's driver licensing system has become a national issue because of booming rates of car ownership and growing tensions on clogged roads. The death rate from road accidents has reached 108 this year, seven more than in the same period last year.

"Ireland's road death rate runs typically 50 per cent higher than the western European average.

"One of the latest fatalities, a 15-year-old schoolboy, was buried Friday. He died when the unlicensed, privately owned school bus in which he and 34 other children were travelling tipped over on a bumpy road."

Is the Government going to do something about this or are we to continue being a laughing stock to the rest of the world?

Can you imagine a situation where a medical student fails his/her medical exam and is issued with a provisional doctor's license?

Would you allow such a doctor to perform surgery on you? Would you place your life in their hands?

Of course you wouldn't. So why are innocent lives being placed in the hands of people who aren't fit to drive a car?

End this farcical situation now!


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