The Vias Institute has issued a denial of a rumour circulating on the internet and on social media concerning a new rule obliging anyone renewing a driving licence to take a medical test.
Vias, formerly known as the Belgian Institute for Road Safety, described the rumour as a hoax.
According to the message, the obligation to undergo a medical examination applies to anyone renewing their driving licence for any reason.
In addition, the message claims, “they’re going to try to disqualify as many drivers as possible. Spread this information, especially to older people who will be the worst affected.”
But according to Benoit Godart, spokesperson for Vias, nothing could be further from the truth.
“We regularly get emails about a hoax circulating online that talks about people having to pass a medical exam if they renew their licence,” he said in a statement. “This is absolutely false. We don’t know where it comes from, but it’s spreading like wildfire.
The hoax comes back around at regular intervals every year, and it could be damaging because some people might not dare to renew their licence, even though it’s a simple formality, and requires no medical examination. And it’s not even a proposal that’s being discussed. It would contribute nothing at all to road safety. They did introduce it in the Netherlands, but now they’re backing off.”
Vias does however stress the importance of having a driving licence with an up to date photograph of the holder.
“If you were 20 years old in the photo on your driving licence and in the meantime you’ve turned 60, the police could issue a warning if there’s a check, or even a summons,” Godart said.