Road tests for commercial driver’s licences will resume in B.C. next week.
The tests have been cancelled since March 17 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Drivers looking to book a commercial licence road test can call ICBC starting on Thursday. The tests will be by appointment only.
“The safety of our customers and employees is our top priority and we have taken a thoughtful approach to develop a plan that allows us to resume road tests in the safest manner possible,” ICBC President and CEO Nicolas Jimenez said.
“Customers have been eager to see these services resume and we’re happy to have found a way to do so safely.”
Customers are asked to arrive on time for their appointment with the required identification and to ensure the interior of their vehicle is clean.
Upon arrival, they will be asked a series of health screening questions and provided a mandatory medical-grade mask to wear for the duration of the road test.
Driver examiners will conduct road tests from inside the customer’s vehicle to ensure the examiner is able to fully assess the road test and to take control of the vehicle in the event of an emergency. Driver examiners will be provided the appropriate personal protective equipment which can include a combination of masks, shields, goggles, gloves and disposable seat covers.
Last week Global News spoke to Jonathan Dueling who says he bought a new truck in February and was set to have a road test in April.
Dueling says the cancellation has his livelihood on life support.
“It can mean my small business will go under and collapse,” Dueling said. “A business I have worked blood and sweat and tears on could collapse.”
Dueling says cherry season will be running in two weeks, and he can’t afford not to be operating his 18-wheeler then.
“I hope they will let me take the test very soon. And if I fail, because I am not the smartest guy, they can get me in for a second test within a week,” Dueling said.
“Because if I have to wait two weeks for a re-test I don’t have that. I would have had that if I had got in in April.”
The COVID-19 pandemic forced ICBC to cancel all road tests, estimated at more than 50,000, due to concerns over spread of the virus during the in-vehicle tests.
To date, ICBC says it has enough PPE for the first phase. The public insurer is planning to expand the availability of road tests to other classes of licences as soon as possible.
The timing of that expansion will be dependent on the successful roll-out of this initial phase and ICBC’s continued ability to secure sufficient PPE for employees and customers, it said.
“ICBC’s plan prioritizes the safety of our members and allows us to continue our critical role in helping families and organizations across the province by delivering goods and services during these challenging times,” BC Trucking Association President and CEO Dave Earle said.View link »