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Revealed: How many people failed their driving test in Northern Ireland?

One in five vehicles fails MOT

By Sue Doherty

According to figures released on Thursday, nearly half of learner drivers in Northern Ireland failed their driving test and one in five vehicles failed the MOT.

These are just some of the facts to be found in the Dfi Driver, Vehicle, Operator and Enforcement Statistics Annual 2016-2017.

According to the report, the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) tested 1,078,000 vehicles during the year, with 81% passing the MOT. The testing pass rate varied, with more than 93% of motorcycles passing but less than 76% of light goods vehicles.

Around 62,000 driving tests were administered during the year, with less than 57% passing their practical driving test.

Drivers taking the taxi theory test proved the worst category among the 76,000 taking theory tests; just 19% managed to pass compared to the high success rate (84%) in the passenger carrying vehicle (PCV) hazard perception test.

The pass rate among private car owners has fallen, from more than 66% in 2008/2009, to less than 47% in 2016/2017. A spokesperson for the DVA said that part of the reason may be "the changes in the suite of theory test questions introduced in January 2012, designed to encourage more thorough preparation by candidates."

The DVA estimates that 3 out of 4 people (74%) aged 17+ in Northern Ireland now has a full driving licence for a private car.

A survey of Heavy Goods Vehicles indicated that just under 22% are not in compliance. The DVA spokesperson commented: "This rate means that, at any given time, around one in five HGVs on NI roads are estimated to be in breach of compliance legislations, either because they are committing a traffic offence and/or have a roadworthiness defect (estimated at 1 in 10).

The full report can be viewed here: DVA statistics

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