Driving With Special Needs
Learning to drive if you have a disability, health condition or learning difficulty
Driving With Special Needs
When you book your driving test you should say if you have any sort of disability, health condition or learning difficulty. No matter how serious your disability is you will still take the same driving test as every other test candidate and you will still have to drive to the same standard to pass the test, but the driving examiner can make adjustments to the test to suit your individual situation.
Manual or Automatic
You can take the practical in either a manual or an automatic car depending on your individual needs. If you have a physical disability you may need an automatic, if you pass your test in an automatic you will only be able to drive automatic vehicles, if you require adaptations to the vehicle these will be recorded in your licence. If you have hearing difficulties or learning difficulties you may be completely capable of driving a standard manual car.
You have a disability
You might be allowed a bit more time for your driving test if you have certain disabilities. It will give the examiner time to talk to you about your disability, any adaptations fitted to your car.
You’re deaf or have a hearing impairment
The examiner will use written notes at the start of the test to explain what will happen. If you lip read, they will also look at you so you can lip read what they are saying. The examiner will usually give directions to you as hand signals. These will be fully explained to you before your driving test starts.
Using a sign language interpreter
You can take a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter with you. They must be at least 16 years old. Your driving instructor can be your interpreter. You need to arrange your own interpreter and pay any fees that they charge. You can claim the cost back after your test.
You can take a driving test at any stage of your pregnancy. However, you must be able and willing to do an emergency stop.
You have reading difficulties
When you do the eyesight check at the start of the driving test, you can write down the number plate instead of reading it out loud.
You have learning difficulties
The examiner will make adjustments for the independent driving part of the test if you have learning difficulties. They might ask if you’d prefer to follow traffic signs instead of directions from a sat nav.
Driving test extra time allocation
Extra time allocation may be required:
- If you are deaf or have hearing difficulties.
- If you have learning difficulties or educational needs.
- If you are restricted in your movements.
- If you have any physical disability.
- If you have any missing limbs.
- If you have a medical condition that prevents conventional operation of the standard controls of a manual car.
If you need any help you can book your driving test by phone and you can discuss your individual needs with the
DVSA booking centre: 0300 200 1122.
If you have any further questions please feel free to contact us and we will help with any questions you may have.
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