Children can be given driving licences without passing test after Georgia scraps requirement

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Georgia could soon have teenagers on its roads who have not passed proper road tests during the Covid-19 shutdown

World | The Independent

Teenagers in Georgia have been able to secure driver’s licenses without passing road tests due to guidelines on social distancing.

The decision to suspend road testing was made last month under the executive order signed by Georgia governor Brian Kemp.

The provision, which stated the need for all other parts of the state’s driving test to be met, read that “Applicants for a driver’s licence shall not be required to complete a comprehensive on-the-road driving test”.

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The temporary suspension of road testing in Georgia has meant that teenagers are able to pass the road testing stage of the application process whilst the state department of driver services practices social distancing during this pandemic.

Applicants must still provide evidence that they have completed around 40 hours of supervised driving provided through an instructor or a parent.

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In effect, the temporary provisions allow Georgia parents to sign-off on their children’s driver’s licenses during the coronavirus pandemic.

“What the executive order does, it allows the teen driver to go to that next phase without having to take that road test because of social distancing problems, obviously, in trying to provide the test,” said Spencer Moore, the commissioner at the Department of Driver Services, to WSB-TV news.

The commissioner also claimed that applicants normally had the necessary skills to pass the state’s driving test thanks to lessons provided by parents.

“Many of them are trained in those settings and they are ready to go,” said Moore. “We see a very high pass rate. we see more than eighty percent on their first round go.”

Georgia teenagers who complete an online application proving their driving qualifications can print a temporary license at home before a full license is delivered.

But some parents warn that the state will soon have drivers on its roads who have not passed an official road test.

“I have mixed feeling[s] because I do feel we need to keep social distancing,” said Alicia Wiggins, who has been teaching their 15-year-old son to drive, to WSB-TV. “But I also feel nervous about having drivers on the road that haven’t actually passed a road test.”

The current executive order in Georgia ends in mid-May.

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