DVLA speaks out as lorry drivers frustrated over major licence delays

The DVLA has spoken out after HGV drivers were said they were frustrated and exhausted about license delays from the Government agency.

Drivers have been complaining for months due to a massive backlog of licenses with some motorists claiming they have been waiting months for their licence.

Now HGV drivers have spoken to motortransport and voiced their concern that the delays “threaten livelihoods”.

READ MORE: DVLA will block parking firms from driver’s data under new plans

One driver said his professional driving entitlement expired in May 2021 and yet he was still struggling to contact the DVLA and find out what was going on.

The trucker, who said he had multiple sclerosis and has to renew his license annually, said: “I returned the forms on time.

“I was then asked to have a face-to-face appointment with my neurologist, as all appointments had been by telephone only because of Covid. That took place in October 2021.

“My neurologist submitted a letter confirming I was still fit to drive HGVs shortly afterwards. I still have no license.”

He added: “I have been trying to get through to this number for the past eight months and it doesn’t matter what time of day or which day you ring, nor whether you ring directly or are put through by another department, the result is the same.

“I have also tried using the webchat service. This, too, is unavailable.

“I have no way of contacting anyone about this, so cannot do anything to avoid my license being revoked and my livelihood lost.”

BirminghamLive previously documented people on social media complaining about license delays with some people claiming they have waited half-a-year for their licence.

The DVLA previously blamed coronavirus for the massive backlog and asked people to get in touch with the agency if they have been waiting for longer than 6 to 10 weeks.

But the DVLA told people to use its online service in order to get a quicker service as paper applications can take a while.

The licensing agency recently apologised, for the delays and said it was experiencing a reduced number of staff to deal with 60,000 items of mail it receives every day.

A spokesperson said this week: “Demand to speak to our contact center is currently very high, our staff are working hard to answer calls, but there will be delays for customers who call.

“Paper applications and more complex transactions, for example if medical investigations are needed will take longer and we’re sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

“We have prioritized vocational driving license applications throughout the pandemic, and continue to do so.”

The spokesman added: “When considering an application to issue a driving license we aim to make a decision as quickly as possible.

“However where we require additional information from a driver’s doctor, or need the driver to take an assessment, we are wholly reliant on receiving this information before a decision can be made.”

Stay up to date with the very latest news from your Birmingham or West Midlands street or neighborhood with our daily Birmingham News Email Updates.

Leave a Comment