Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has said that it is unacceptable that the number of people waiting for driving tests in the local Tallaght centre has been allowed to spiral out of all proportion, saying that “it is unbelievable that there are now 9,323 people who are being left waiting for a driving test in Tallaght alone”.

Out of the 52 driving test centres in the State, Tallaght now represents 10% of the total backlog as of November 4th. An additional 2,300 people have been added to the Tallaght waiting list since July.

Teachta Crowe said:

“Once again, we have received figures from the Road Safety Authority that put Tallaght way ahead of any other driving test centre in the state in terms of how many people are waiting for a test.

“There were 9,323 people stuck waiting for a test last week.

“Out of the 52 driving test centres across the country, Tallaght now represents 10% of the total backlog as of November 4th. An additional 2,300 people have been added to the waiting list since July.

“Finglas is again in second place with 6,665 people waiting, showing the huge difference between worst and second worst.

“It is entirely unacceptable that the people of south west and north west Dublin are being left to wait for months and months on a waiting list that only grows and grows. The current driving test system is broken and people living in Tallaght and its hinterland are suffering from the fallout.

“We are being ignored and this is having serious implications for people’s ability to find or keep a job or even to bring their children to school or childcare.

“Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan needs to wake up and show that he is more willing to solve the problems facing tens of thousands of Irish citizens.

“Some of these delays are down to his predecessor Shane Ross but, so far, he has only allowed the problem to get worse and grow further out of hand.

“In addition, the driver theory test has been suspended until early December, causing further setbacks for those needing to learn to drive.

“One thing that is obviously clear is a need for additional driving instructors and testers. Likewise, longer opening hours and weekend tests would go some of the way to address the lengthening backlog.

“The Minister needs to urgently consult with instructors, testers and their unions to find a way forward to accelerate the number of tests that can be carried out safely over the coming months.

“The Minister must be engaged and proactive because right now he is out of touch and asleep at the wheel.”