The aim is to improve the standard of road safety for motorcycle and moped riders. This user group has been identified as having a high risk of injury or death, this is particularly the case for young and inexperienced riders.
In October 2000, the European Commission brought in new standards for theoretical and practical driving tests conducted within the European Union (EU). This new legislation adds to this and is intended to ensure that motorcycle test candidates demonstrate that they are competent in the control of their machines at a more demanding level than is currently the case.
The new test event will contain two elements. The higher speed exercises and other exercises will be tested on safe off-road sites and take about 10 minutes to complete. The accompanied on road element of the test will follow, consisting of a road ride covering a variety of road and traffic conditions and will also include normal stops, hill and angle starts. Candidates who have demonstrated riding skills of a dangerously incompetent level during the off-road part of the test will not be permitted to proceed to the on-road element.
The new test will be delivered from a network of sites provided either directly by DSA or via private developers. Many of the centres will be Multi-purpose Test Centres (MPTCs) providing both motorcycle and car testing facilities. Some will provide Large Goods Vehicle (LGV) and Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) testing facilities, whilst some sites will provide motorcycle testing only.
The new EU standards set extra and more demanding special exercises that must be included in every practical motorcycling test from the date of implementation. These new standards include:
Link to manoeuvre diagram with measurements
The diagrams show the proposed layout of the manoeuvring area. On the day of the test, candidates will be asked by the examiner to demonstrate their riding ability on either the left-hand or right-hand circuit.
The practical moped riding test (which does not include the high-speed requirements) will also be carried out from the new test centres, where both the obstacle avoidance and emergency braking exercises will be carried out at 30 kph (approx. 19 mph). A test for the drivers of motorcycle and side car combination is also under development.
It was considered that it would not be safe to conduct the new higher speed and braking exercises on public roads, which in very built up and busy test areas, would not be safe for the rider, other road users and the general public.
Undertaking a fair and consistent assessment for all candidates across Great Britain would be best achieved by using a pre-determined layout using ground markings and cones. It would be impractical and unsafe to do that on a public road as to comply with the speed requirement examiners would have to use roads with a speed limit of 40 mph.
Due to the minimum speeds required and different handling and power characteristics of different machines, DSA has developed a minimum test area in which it will be safe to conduct the off road element of the new test.
If you have any further questions regarding the new test, please take a look at the following websites: