Should Driving Lessons Be An Essential Service?

Tue 3rd Nov 2020

England’s lockdown measures have hit many industries hard, but the role of the driving instructor should be considered an essential service according to one of the country’s leading driving schools.

The argument is that without driving instruction and testing in operation, jobs and livelihoods are at risk, both for those who teach driving, but also those who can launch a new career having passed their test.

The CEO of RED Driving School has said that the cancellation of lessons will have far reaching consequences, as well as adding to the existing backlog which was caused by a four month suspension in the summer.

“We understand the difficult position the government is in and recognise the importance of stopping the spread of the virus for the health and safety of the nation,” said RED CEO Ian McIntosh. “However, we have worked tirelessly to make sure driving lessons are safe. The driver tuition industry has already faced months of uncertainty and financial hardship this year and to stop driving instruction for a second time is a mistake.

“Driving lessons should be considered an essential service and be allowed to continue throughout lockdown, as long as safety measures like mandatory face coverings are observed.

“Many of our learners need their licence for work purposes because their job requires driving or because public transport doesn’t suit their work schedule or location. Others need to learn to drive for childcare purposes or to attend medical appointments.”

The ban on driving lessons in the summer lockdown led to significant battle to secure lessons when normal services resumed, and it is estimated that half a million tests were cancelled or delayed.