NASP urges action on waiting rooms

Test centre waiting rooms remain closed.

NASP has urged its members to lodge a complaint with the Health and Safety Executive regarding the continued closure of test centre waiting rooms.

NASP member associations have raised the issue with DVSA on numerous occasions and asked for a clearer line of sight on when waiting rooms may reopen, as trainers are already starting to be left out in the cold as autumn arrives. To date no further positive feedback on this issue has been received from DVSA, and no indication of when waiting rooms may open has been given.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) wrote to the agency in September highlighting that the failure to provide adequate sanitary facilities and waiting spaces to customers and trainers is contrary to health and safety legislation and regulation. 

DVSA says that it is difficult to open waiting rooms due to the challenge of social distancing, the need to limit exposure to COVID-19 and staffing challenges. Some waiting rooms at test centres are being used as extra office space to allow staff to socially distance. 

NASP no longer finds these reasons acceptable and points to other public and private sector (including retail) companies who are able to manage their services and accommodation to provide employees and customers with a socially distanced and safe working environment, as well as those which have socially distanced and safe waiting rooms and reception areas.

While NASP will continue to raise this issue with both DVSA and HSE, it also recommends that individual trainers make a complaint directly to HSE.

Click here to make a complaint.

15 thoughts on “NASP urges action on waiting rooms”

  1. My local test centre which is at Lancing has changed test times and now they’re only ever two of us waiting – so no reason we couldn’t use the waiting room!!!
    We are also made to feel guilty if and when we can find someone to unlock the loo !!
    Why lock the loo – public toilets are open !!
    Admittedly they open the garage part if it is raining but it is still freezing cold and they won’t provide chairs – I understand we need to be careful but surely a waiting room with a couple of plastic chairs would be adequate and no more risk than sitting in a car with a pupil

  2. Steve Clarke

    I don’t wish to complain as I see the reason and the logic behind the closure but could the test centres at least provide a warm covered area and a least a few chairs to sit on please.

  3. I find it absolutely appalling that we as ADI’s cannot enter a waiting room whilst learners are on test. Yet your examiners can sit in our cars. It’s absolutely ridiculous. No other company that I know of are treating their work colleagues in this manner. We are standing outside in all weather conditions. It’s time DVSA sorted this nonsense out !!!

  4. Simon Jennings

    So they will need to provide a cleaner then on duty all day due to the amount of driving instructors coming and going throughout the day? Badly thought out I’m afraid.

  5. Pauline Williams

    I feel waiting rooms can open. Social distancing can be maintained. We are closer when instructing. Masks or visors should be compulsory as in sanitising . As autumn approaches its cold and wet . we as instructs then have to work in wet clothes. I feel I am putting on examiners to ask to use the toilet some of which on many occasions I do not get an answer so can’t go.
    DVSA should now make provisions as some test areas are not the safest of places to be alone at a 8am test in the winter.

  6. I have made my complaint and I know that many others have too. I see the problem being that no one is prepared to take legal action against the DVSA. I consulted a solicitor about this issue and he said following
    “ You are not employed by them, they owe you no duty other than to keep you safe when you are on their site as a visitor. I’m sorry but that is the way it is. If you do not feel comfortable then of course they would say stop using the centre until the facilities are fully open.”
    I’m not sure that this is entirely true as HSE clearly have a different view.
    Could NASP not now seek legal representation with a view to compensation for ADIs and their pupils at the cost of say £50 for every test they have had to endure without access to adequate facilities?

    Thanks for your support and pushing this on our behalf but I do feel that the next step is now needed.

  7. We think this is very unprofessional of the DVSA it’s always on their terms.
    There is no need to keep instructors & students waiting outside in the rain and cold we could all use hand gels, disinfectant wipes.
    After all we and our students pay their wages.

  8. Kevan Chippindall-Higgin

    My local test centre, Portsmouth, has closed every second parking bay due to Covid ,the reason being social distancing. There has now been a policy change. New, temporary bays have been set up from where tests will start with vehicles reversed in. The existing bays are where tests end. So far, so good.

    Except that there is a tiny fly in the ointment. The new, temporary bays, have no social distancing! This is yet another example of the completely random, stupid Covid enforcement actions taken all over the country. Schools are open and they are known for being an ideal environment for the spread of illness. The kids come home and spread bugs round the home. Students are attending uni, despite much of their work being done on line. They should have stayed at home except for specific tasks that must be done on campus. Instead, Covid is sweeping through the student community and thence to the wider community.

    Meanwhile, I cannot attend a neighbour’s barbecue and I would not be surprised to find the pubs closing again fairly soon. The whole thing is utterly insane and to cap it all, I must stand outside in the pouring rain to protect my health. Yeah, right.

    1. Natalie mountjoy

      Agree with everything youve said. Nonsense, unclear regulations. None of it makes any sense

  9. Philip Townsend

    We are being forced to wait outside in terrible weather whilst the tests are carried out. Very good chance of becoming ill and costing us money in cancelled lessons.
    This is simply not good enough.

  10. Rowan knight

    Open test centre waiting rooms. Facilities need to be used for us all, pupils, old and young driving instructors, pregnant ladies. The weather getting worse, rain and cold…..what about the toilets we need to use these too. It’s terrible as we can’t shelter against the weather and comfortably wait. I wouldn’t let my dog wait outside in some of the conditions I been made to stand around in…terrible open up at once where’s your duty of care, compassion, driving instructors lives matter!!!!

  11. Rebecca Mettam

    I had 2 test last week and still no test centre waiting room available. Personally i have 2 medical conditions that is great affected by getting cold i regularly wear double to triple the amount of layers to the average person…… if everyone can social distancing in shops etc why should it be different in a test centre…… would you and your staff like to be waiting in cold and wet……. NO

  12. Janice Forbes

    I feel this could easily be resolved by putting in particians in the waiting room area, same as every other place, as mask and sanitisers are already compulsory. Cleaning toilets down after use it’s no hardship. Better than freezing outside.
    The DVSA seem to worried about us, while we are worried about them getting into our cars. Do they change their gloves and masks every test. Are they subject to a temperature check every morning on entering their work place, who knows !!!

  13. Instructor UK

    The main issue regarding Derby test centre is that we have no shelter whatsoever and the test centre is in the middle of nowhere so we are unable to go elsewhere in this cold, wet weather.
    Forget COVID 19, all the instructors will be off with pneumonia if it carries on like this!
    And with not working for 4 months, the last thing we need is to be off again through illnesses caused by standing in the cold and rain for up to an hour!
    I understand you are doing whatever possible but the above is a concern with every instructor I’ve spoken to about the subject.
    And essentially, we are all old enough and responsible enough to carry out our own risk assessments at the test centres, if they were to open again.
    No one wants COVID 19 so we would do our upmost to prevent that

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