Communication receeived from HSE this morning –
Dear Sue Duncan
Thank you for raising the issue of access to test centre waiting rooms / areas with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and for your patience during our discussions with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) to provide these facilities across the test centre estate. Due to the challenges presented by a wide variety of premises type (whether by size, capacity, location, sole occupancy by DVSA, in a multi-occupancy building etc) there has been a need to discuss in further detail, the provision of waiting areas while also ensuring the appropriate management of the risk of coronavirus transmission amongst visitors and workers at test centres. We acknowledge that driving instructors have not been able to access waiting areas during this time, but we are advised by DVSA that access is provided to toilets and handwashing facilities at all test centres.
By way of update from discussions, DVSA are completing site specific risk assessments for all sites to allow them to start to reinstate the use of waiting areas while taking account of risks of Covid-19 transmission. Of necessity this means that the reintroduction of these facilities will be phased depending on the individual challenges presented by the site and the solutions that need to be deployed before they can be used, i.e. facilities will be available at some centres before others. We know that the pandemic continues to present a worrying time for all and DVSA’s work continues to take that into account for visitors and workers at test centre sites while provision of waiting facilities is considered.
We understand that the reintroduction of waiting area provision is likely to commence next week and that others will follow as part of DVSA’s phased plan. HSE will continue to work with DVSA and monitor the progress they make with this work.
Thank you for contacting HSE about this important matter and I hope the above is helpful in explaining the action we have taken.
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