Memorandum by the Department
of the Environment, Transport and the Regions
1999 (S.I. 1999/617)
1. The Committee has asked for
a memorandum on the following point:-
New regulation 13A(2)(d)(i)
(inserted by regulation 4) provides that a person has relevant
driving experience if, in the case of a person supervising a provisional
licence holder who is driving a vehicle in the specified categories,
he held the relevant licence on 6 April 1998 and has held it continuously
since that date. Explain the purpose and effect of this requirement
and, in particular, the significance of the underlined words.
2. By virtue of regulations
13 and 15 of the Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) Regulations
1996 (S.I. 1996/2824 as amended by S.I. 1997/669) a person
holding a licence (the learner driver) in the categories referred
to in this provision must be accompanied by a driver (the qualified
driver) who is 21 years of age and holds a full licence authorising
him to drive vehicles of the same class as the learner driver.
The regulations impose no requirement as to the length of time
for which the qualified driver must have held that licence.
3. This is at variance with
the position for vehicles in category B (motor cars and small
goods vehicles) where the qualified driver must have held the
relevant full licence for 3 years or more overall (the 3-year
requirement). It was decided that the requirements should be brought
into line. However, the nature of the large vehicle training industry
makes it inappropriate to impose the 3-year requirement immediately
and it was therefore further decided that an immediate requirement
to have held a full licence for one year should be imposed, with
this rising to the full 3-year requirement over a two year period.
4. Regulation 13A(2)(d)(i) (the
enactment) is therefore in the nature of an interim provision.
It comes into force on 6 April 1999. By 5 April 2001, if it remains
unamended, the 3-year requirement will apply. The enactment will
then be revoked so that paragraph (2)(d)(ii) applies to all qualified
drivers whatever the category of vehicle. An alternative provision
was considered under which the enactment would have ceased to
apply after two years, but this was rejected in order to keep
the regulation as a whole relatively simple.
29th March 1999