Foreign language tests end.
From the 7th April 2014 driving test candidates will no longer be able to have the aid of a foreign language voiceover or interpreter on their driving test.
The transport minister – Stephen Hammond said:
“It is essential that all road users have the right skills to use our roads safely and responsibly. By stopping driving tests in foreign languages we will cut out the risk of fraud, and help to ensure that all drivers can read road signs and fully understand the rules of the road.”
One of the main reasons for the end in foreign language tests is to help reduce driving test fraud. Since 2008 over 1300 theory test passes have been revoked due to fraudulent interpreters. After an investigation it was found that learners were being fed correct answers without the examiners being aware.
The DVSA stated that between 2008 and 2009 more than 20 percent of the tests taken with a foreign language interpreter were fraudulent.
Another reason for the change has been concerns over the lack of understanding of road safety, for example an individual not being able to read road signs or details of the rules of the roads. Likewise, not being able to communicate with road enforcement officers.
The review from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) consulted almost 2000 people and more than 70% agreed with ending the tests.
In the past 19 different languages were available to take your test in. This has now been reduced to English and Welsh.
Candidates with special needs such as dyslexia or hearing difficulties will still be able to receive help.
New Style Photocard licence
Starting from February 2014, the DVLA introduced a new style photo card driving licence. Don’t worry, you will not need to update your licence until yours is due for renewal or you need to change your details.
Many of the details are still the same including; the card holders full name, address, and date of birth, as well as the types of vehicles they can drive.
The main changes are due to security and fraud reduction.
The new licence features include:
Optical Variable Ink (OVI)
Not heard of this? It’s used on many banknotes. The ink changes from one colour to another depending on the angle / light. In the case of the driving licence, this ink is used on the wheel on the front right hand side of the card. The colours change from green to gold.
Both lettering and images contain raised elements on the new card. Lettering includes surnames, category and the date. Images include the EU flag. These can be felt when brushing your finger across the card.
Two difference images can be seen when the card is tilted. This image is of the card holder and changes to the month and year of the card.
The main image on the licence is now engraved through many layers and is black and white.
The licence will remain the same size, so you will still be able to keep it in your wallet!
The DVLA has advised that anyone who needs to check ID cards ensure they familiarize themselves with the new design.
DVLA Online Service a Winner \r\n\r\nNo longer do you have to wait in the post office queue in your work break to update your car tax. The checking system is now automated so you can get a car tax disc online and by making a quick phone call.\r\n\r\nThe other thing you can do with the DVLA”s online services is declare a vehicle off the road.\r\n\r\nHow does licensing your vehicle online work ? \r\n\r\nA reminder normally comes through the post that your tax needs to be renewed, simply enter the sixteen digit reference number from this reminder and your numberplate.\r\n
- When you apply for a new tax disc online a check will be done to see if your car is insured and if the car has a new style MOT certificate.
- Make a choice between 6 or 12 months car tax then pay with a credit/debit card
- Your new car tax disc will arrive in the post within 5 working days.
- If you declared your vehicle off the road – Statatory Off Road Notification (SORN) a confirmation letter will arrive in within a 4 week period.