The DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator, and Enforcement Statistics 2020-21 Quarter Two report, containing statistics for July to September 2020, is now available.
The publication is produced by the DVA Statistics Branch of the Department for Infrastructure (DfI), and contains summary statistical, performance, and trend information relating to the main functions of the DfI’s Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) and other vehicle licensing activity.
The publication is available on the DfI website at:
The key points in the report are:
Vehicle testing resumed in stages throughout the quarter, beginning with priority vehicle groups in July, and extending to further categories (including four-year-old private cars) in September. The DVA conducted approximately 22,800 vehicle tests during quarter one, roughly 8% of the usual volume. Whilst the pass-rate for full tests increased to 83.6%, this was mainly due to the mix of vehicles tested being substantially different to normal.
DVLA registered just over 4,600 new vehicles in Northern Ireland during April to June 2020. This is 72.3% lower than the figure recorded for the same period in 2019 and the lowest quarter-one total in our time series. The most popular new private-car was Volkswagen (10%); with grey the most popular colour (21%) and petrol the most popular fuel-type (57%).
There were 1,200,000 vehicles licensed in Northern Ireland at 30 June 2020, a decrease of 0.1% compared with March 2020. The overwhelming majority (83%) were cars.
Driver Theory Tests
Theory testing resumed post-lockdown on 6 July. Between July and September 2020, the DVA conducted just under 14,900 theory tests, approximately 80% of the usual volume. The pass-rate for private-car theory tests was 56.0%, an increase of 8.6 percentage points on the pre-pandemic quarter-four pass-rate.
Driver Practical Tests
Driver testing resumed in stages throughout the quarter: motorcycles in July, cars and large goods vehicles in September. As such, the DVA conducted 3,400 driver tests during the quarter, approximately a quarter of the usual volume. The pass-rate for private-car driver tests was 68.1%, up by 9.2 percentage points on the pre-pandemic quarter-four pass-rate.
Between July and September 2020, the DVA carried out 57,300 licensing transactions, down 16.7% on the corresponding period in 2019. The number of provisional licenses issued during the quarter was a third higher than 2019, and was the highest quarterly total in our time series.
At the 30 September 2020, there were approximately 1,096,000 full and eligible licence holders with private-cars / light vans entitlement. This was a decrease of 1.4% compared with the previous quarterly total.
Road Transport Licensing
At the 30 September 2020, there were just under 9,050 licensed taxi drivers, down by 9.1% when compared with the same point of 2019, and the lowest figure in our series. However, the number of licensed taxi vehicles increased by 2.7% to 9,000, when compared to the record low reported in March 2020.
Due to various measures introduced due to COVID-19, DVA Enforcement activities were again extremely constrained during the quarter. Accordingly, only 310 vehicles were spot-checked, approximately a quarter of the usual volume checked.
DVA Target Performance Monitoring
For the 12-month period up to the end of September 2020, Agency performance against both the vehicle testing and driver testing performance measures was below the target level of 92%. Vehicle testing was up 8.2 percentage points, to 77.4%. Similarly, driver testing was up by 9.6 percentage points, to 87.0%. For driver licensing, for the 12 months to the end of September 2020, online application performance was 97.8% processed within five days, whilst paper application performance was 84.9% processed within ten days, both against a target of 95%.
Notes to editors:
Background to Driver & Vehicle Agency ‘DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator, and Enforcement Statistics’
- This is the twenty-fourth edition of the quarterly publication ‘DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator, and Enforcement Statistics’, relating to July to September 2020.
- The release covers six main DVA business areas – vehicle testing, theory testing, driver testing, driver licensing, road transport and taxi licensing, and enforcement. Also included in the quarterly publication are monitoring results for four key DVA performance targets.
- Vehicle licensing statistics are also covered in the release however they are no longer a DVA business area: responsibility for vehicle licensing transferred to DVLA in July 2014 and DfT now publish these statistics on a UK-wide basis. Due to publication timing differences with the DfT, who release the headline UK figures, the latest available NI vehicle first registration figures are up to end-June 2020.
- We derive the majority of figures from administrative data sources held within the DVA and the DfI’s Transport Regulation Unit.
- The majority of the statistics included in this report cover the reopening period following the first COVID-19 lockdown.
- The release is written, and issued by, the DVA Statistics Branch in the Department for Infrastructure.
- ‘DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator and Enforcement Statistics’ is published every quarter at pre-announced release dates, which are available from the GOV.UK website.
- Electronic copies of the ‘DfI Driver, Vehicle, Operator, and Enforcement Statistics 2020-21 Quarter Two’ can be downloaded from our website at:
- A detailed User Guidance document is also available on our website.
This is a National Statistics publication and therefore follows the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. You can find further information about the Code on the Statistics Authority’s website.
For further information, please contact:
DVA Statistics Branch,
Driver and Vehicle Agency,
Annex 4, Belfast Test Centre
66 Balmoral Road,
- Telephone (press): 02890 540007
- Telephone (public): 02890 547911 (Text relay prefix 18001)
- E-mail: DVA.Statistics@nisra.gov.uk
- Website: Driver & Vehicle Agency Activity Statistics
- LED street lighting upgrade for Newcastle Main Street 15 January 2021
- Publication of DVA Monthly Tests Conducted Statistics – December 2020 15 January 2021
- LED Street Lighting Upgrade Scheme, Moss Park, Derry 14 January 2021
- Street Lighting Renewal Scheme, Great Northern Road, Omagh 14 January 2021