Roads Minister Stephen Hammond launched the new Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) yesterday, Wednesday 2nd April 2014.
DVSA replaces the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) and the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA). It will be responsible for setting, testing and enforcing driver and vehicle standards in Great Britain and employ more than 4,000 staff.
The DSA has been consistently failing to perform recently, especially through its botched implementation of the 3rd EU Driving Licence Directive and its quite bizarre interpretation of the new motorcycle riding test requirements. The added expense, confusion and the greatly restricted access to motorcycle test facilities in the UK led to a halving of the number of riders taking their test and the closure of many riding schools. So severe were the problems, that a Transport Select Committee wrote a damning report on the situation which led to a Ministerial Review that took almost 3 years and was ultimately futile due to the stalling and evasive behaviours of the DSA.
The head of the DSA Rosemary Thew was finally replaced in July 2013 by Alastair Peoples (VOSA Head) who now takes the healm at the new Agency.
By combining services, each year the new DVSA will:
• conduct 1.5 million theory tests and 1.6 million practical driving tests
• regulate 28 million MOT tests and 46,000 driving instructors and motorcycle trainers
• carry out 137,000 roadside inspections
• test and inspect 790,000 commercial vehicles
• issue 87,000 goods and passenger vehicle operator licences
Roads Minister, Stephen Hammond said; “The creation of DVSA builds on the vital work that has already been done to improve road safety and offer modern, cost effective services for motorists. The merged agency offers the opportunity to increase efficiency and further explore ways of providing innovative, convenient services.”
DVSA Chief Executive, Alastair Peoples, said; “By bringing testing and standards services into a single agency we will make life easier for customers by putting them at the heart of the services they rely on and providing a more coherent approach to service delivery.”