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The Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act 1995 came into force on 1 June 1997. The Act means that drivers who receive six or more penalty points on their licence, within two years of passing their driving test will effectively be forced to become learners again. They will have to display 'L' plates once more and be accompanied by a fully qualified driver over the age of 21 who has held a full licence for at least three years until they re-pass both the theory test and practical driving test.

The two year 'probationary period' will begin on the day the first driving test is passed. Drivers who already hold a full licence for one category of vehicle will not be affected if they pass a test in an additional category.

The 'Extended Driving Test' can be imposed by the court on anyone convicted of dangerous driving offences and lasts for approximately one hour and is assessed at the same standard as the normal practical driving test. However, the extra time will give the opportunity for the Examiner to take the candidate into more varied and potentially difficult situations than on the normal test. The candidate will also have to carry out the normal driving test manouevres. The DSA recommend that anyone requiring an Extended Test should take some lessons first with an Approved Driving Instructor.


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