Fri, 03 Dec 2021

Publication of 'DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics - September 2021'

Northern Ireland Executive
20 Oct 2021, 21 GMT+10

The 'DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics September 2021' report, containing statistics up to September 2021, is now available.

The publication is produced by the DVA Statistics Branch of the Department for Infrastructure (DfI), and contains summary volumes on the vehicle, driver, and theory tests conducted by the DfI's Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA). The publication is available on the DfI website at: DVA Monthly Tests - Conducted Statistics

KEY POINTS

The key points in the report are:

Driving Practical Tests

Following the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, driver testing was able to resume from 23 April 2021 onwards. Due to the nature of particular tests, off-road Motorcycle and certain LGV tests had been able continue prior to this period. The DVA driver testing booking system opened to all customers in the first week of May 2021.

In September 2021, the DVA received 6,661 applications for a driving test appointment. This is almost 800 (13%) higher than in August (5,872), and 36% (1,773) above the five year September average (4,888).

The DVA conducted 6,441 driving tests in September, just over 800 (14%) higher compared with August (5,628), and 41% above the five year September average (4,567).

Private cars accounted for 82% (5,267) of all driving tests conducted in September.

Driver Theory Tests

Following the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, theory testing was able to resume from 23 April 2021 onwards.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) took over the contract for theory testing from Pearson on 4 September 2021. With the administrative system in transition, figures for applications for August and September and tests conducted for September were not validated in time for publication but will be included in our published series at the earliest opportunity.

The DVA conducted 7,640 theory tests in August, almost 25% (2,494) below that for July (10,134). Private cars account for 88% (6,730) of all theory tests conducted in August. The transition to a new service provider (DVSA) may help to explain the drop in theory tests conducted for August.

Vehicle Testing

Following the initial outbreak of COVID-19, the DVA suspended all vehicle testing from 24 March 2020, and resumed testing in stages during June (IVA), July (priority groups incl. taxis and buses), and September (four-year-old private cars and motorcycles, three-year-old light goods, and all heavy goods). The DVA was able to continue testing throughout the winter-2020 lockdown, albeit with a reduced capacity due to social distancing measures. Temporary Exemption Certificates (TEC) were issued to those eligible vehicles that the DVA was unable to test.

The DVA received 93,653 applications for a full vehicle test in September, just over 12,400 (15%) more than for August (81,227). This increase is in applications is partly due to Test Exemption Certificates issued in March 2021 expiring and requiring owners to present their vehicles for MOT in September.

In September 2021, the DVA conducted 57,227 full vehicle tests, just over 5% (3,453) fewer compared to August (60,680), and 86% of the five year September average (66,310). The switch over to a new administrative system may have affected testing operations during the weekend this new system was installed.

Private Cars accounted for almost 82% (46,943) of all full tests conducted in September.

Notes to editors:

  1. This is the thirteenth edition of the publication 'DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics', relating to data up to September 2021. The release is written, and issued by, the DVA Statistics Branch in the Department for Infrastructure.
  2. The release presents statistics on vehicle, driver, and theory tests conducted during September 2021, together with trend series over the previous five financial years.
  3. We source vehicle and driver data from administrative data sources within the DVA, whilst DVSA supply theory-testing data. The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) took over the contract for theory testing from Pearson on 4 September 2021. With the administrative system in transition, some figures for August and September were not validated in time for publication but will be included in our published series at the earliest opportunity.
  4. 'DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics' is published every month at pre-announced release dates, which are available from the GOV.UK website.
  5. Electronic copies of 'DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics September 2021' can be downloaded from our website at:

  1. A detailed User Guidance document is also available on our website.
  2. This report supplements the existing quarterly National Statistics publication 'DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator, and Enforcement Statistics'. The latest edition of this for quarter one 2021-22 was released on 2 September and is available on our website at: DVA - Activity Statistics

  3. This is an Official Statistics publication and therefore follows the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. You can find further information about the Code of Practice at: Statistics Authority.
  4. For further information, please contact: DVA Statistics Branch, Driver and Vehicle Agency, Annex 4, Belfast Test Centre, 66 Balmoral Road, Belfast, BT12 6QL,
    Tel (public enquiries): 02890 547911 (Text relay prefix 18001),
    E-mail:DVA.Statistics@nisra.gov.uk,
    Website: Driver Vehicle Agency - Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics

  5. All media queries should be directed to the Department for Infrastructure Press Office at:press.office@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk.

  6. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on028 9037 8110.
  7. Follow the Department on Twitter @deptinfra and on Facebook@DepartmentforInfrastructure

Share this page

More Belfast News

Access More

Sign up for Belfast News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!