I was reminded earlier today, that as of January 19th (last Saturday) new driver licence rules were introduced which will have more of an impact on those who pass their Driving Test after this date than those who currently have a full licence.
The principal change for new drivers will affect those who wish to tow a trailer. Any driver passing a category B (car and small vehicle) test will be limited to towing a small trailer weighing no more than 750 kgs, where the combined weight of the towing vehicle and the trailer isn’t more than 3,500 kgs. So no dragging rally cars to and from events!
Drivers who passed their test before the 19 January will not lose any of their entitlements, but anyone with an HGV (or PSV) licence will have to undergo a medical every five years when they reach the age of 45 in order to renew their driving licence.
A new-style Driving Licence has also been introduced and this will be issued as and when current licences expire or drivers advise the DVLA of any changes, like address or personal details.
However, a word of caution. When you get your new Licence check that all your entitlements have been passed on. When these card licences were first introduced some folk found they had lost entitlement. For instance, prior to 1997 a driver’s licence entitled the holder to legally drive a truck up to 7.5t, but when the DVLA was renewing these at the time, some truck drivers only found out they had ‘lost’ their 7.5t entitlement when the Polis pulled them over.
Fortunately it was all sorted out at the time but only after quite a palaver. So be careful.