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Driving Tests Travel the IT Road

Published 9th December 2010, 5:10 pm

Aspiring drivers sitting the written portion of the Department of Vehicle and Drivers' Licensing (DVDL) examinations now have the benefit of computers with touch-screen technology. The system came on stream earlier this month. DVDL Director David Dixon said the new technology was introduced to improve the efficiency, accuracy and security of the driving test's written portion. "It also means that we will be able to conduct written tests daily, rather than the customary weekly sittings," he said. Underscoring the test's impact on efficiency, he added, "We currently hold some 34 written tests weekly, but the expectation with the new system is that we'll be able to increase that number to around 200." Deputy Director Richard Simms said that the touch-screen technology was acquired from US-based L1 Solutions. He added that the questions and symbols in the test are based on the CI Official Road Codes, the Traffic Act (2003 Revision) and associated Regulations. "With this test, there is no need for pen and paper; the computer creates the test, corrects it and provides immediate results. This system will also allow multiple persons to simultaneously tackle different test questions," he explained. Adding that the new technology eliminates the human element while promoting greater accuracy and fairness, Mr. Simms identified another advantage: examiners can now focus on the driving test's practical elements. "The old system meant that the same examiners administered both the written and practical aspects. This new technology permits them to concentrate on the road test, including parking and other practical angles," he said. Minister of District Administration, Works, Lands and Agriculture the Hon. Juliana O'Connor-Connolly, JP said the touch-screen technology represented an important investment, one that was critical to improving the operations of the department and its service to the motoring public. She urged DVDL officers to ensure that aspiring motorists were fully informed on how to prepare for the test and how to use the touch screen computers.