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Drive Test Centre in Fort Frances, June 2020. Image: Randy Thoms/Acadia Broadcasting

Vaugeois questions driver’s licence testing

By Randy Thoms Mar 4, 2024 | 2:10 PM

A northwestern Ontario MPP is questioning the standards to get a driver’s licence.

Thunder Bay-Superior North MPP Lise Vaugeois says a memo from the firm managing some Drive Test Centres suggests some drivers are getting a free pass.

“Information in the memo identifies fraudulent road test passes and false experience being added to driver records. Not only have the test standards been lowered by the ministry. Even these lowered standards are not being met,” says Vaugeois.

Ontario’s Auditor General raised similar concerns last year.

A report to government found some novice drivers living in urban areas taking road tests in rural areas where pass rates were higher.

It also revealed the Ministry of Transportation provided limited oversight of driving schools and instructors.

“Some drivers are being trained and tested on a single route. Drivers with repeat suspensions, if not required to retrain, are responsible for six times the rate of fatal collisions. The Attorney General’s report is clear. A lack of standards and oversight at drive test centers is leading to an increase in serious accidents,” says Vaugeois.

Transportation Minister Prabmeet Sarkaria says they take road safety seriously and have measures to ensure roads are safe.

He insists Ontario has the safest roads in North America because of it.

“And that’s why we continue to even introduce pieces of legislation like the MoMs Act (Moving Ontarians More Safely Act, 2021), which will increase suspensions and penalties on those who are not safe,” says Sarkaria.

“So if you’re stunt driving or street racing, we will ensure that your vehicle is impounded and that you are also charged for those incidents.”

According to the Auditor General’s report, there were over 11 million licensed drivers in 2022, with 95% holding a G-class license required to drive a car, van or small truck.