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    “Come-back” test introduced for new drivers in Flanders

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    New drivers who obtain their driving licence from July this year in Flanders will have to come back for a second test six to nine months later, to undergo a series of practical exercises. The second test, now being described as a “come-back moment” is one of the new measures introduced by Flemish mobility minister Ben Weyts. The idea is to test the practical abilities of the new driver in a number of situations.

    “Candidates will have to demonstrate an emergency stop, or show they are able to continue driving after suddenly being distracted,” Weyts explained. They will also have to experience driving under the influence, through the use of a pair of glasses which distort the vision in a way similar to being drunk.

    The idea for the test came from Austria and Finland, where the proportion of young drivers in accident statistics fell by 15% to 28%.

    The new test will cost €120, of which €20 is repaid by the Flemish government. The cost of a licence in the region goes up to €174 in all. “That’s still very cheap according to European standards,” Weyts said.

    For truants, however, the cost rises steeply. The first tests are planned for January 2019, after which anyone who misses their come-back will face a fine of €4,000.

    Alan Hope
    The Brussels Times