Drivers could face new health tests every 10 years to ensure that they are fit to be behind the wheel, it has been reported.
Motorists would be able to choose whether to take the tests, but risk a criminal record if they are later found to fall short of standards, according to the Daily Telegraph.
The idea would be for drivers to declare themselves fit to drive every decade, with the option of submitting themselves to tests against new minimum physical and mental requirements.
Issued by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), they are likely to cover eyesight and reaction times.
The Telegraph said that the proposals are set to be unveiled in the New Year, although a Department for Transport (DfT) official described the report as ‘speculation’.
However, the DfT launched a consultation earlier this year into ways of improving road safety, amid concern about the growing numbers of elderly drivers.
A DfT spokesperson said: ‘Increasing car use, changes in the population’s health and medical advances all mean that the demands on the health and driver licensing system are very different to those of 30 years ago – when it was established.
‘We are considering these issues carefully and intend to consult on how we can improve the service we offer drivers.’
© Press Association 2008
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