Bookings suspended due to ‘unprecedented demand’ just 12 hours after reopening

Learner drivers hoping to book a driving test before Wednesday will be left disappointed after an “unprecedented” surge in demand crashed the booking website.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is currently administering “urgent maintenance” to the site, which experienced a surge in users when it reopened following several months of suspension due to the coronavirus lockdown.

More than seven million visitors attempted to access the service in 12 hours.

On Saturday, the agency confirmed that the service will now be offline until 8am on Wednesday.

‘Unprecedented demand’

DVSA chief executive Gareth Llewellyn said: “Coronavirus has severely impacted our business-as-usual operations, including by stopping driving tests in March.

Hundreds of thousands could be stuck in the backlog (Photo: PA)

“Since then DVSA have only been dealing with applications for emergency driving tests for critical workers.

“Following unprecedented demand for the driving test booking system with almost seven million attempts to book a test when it opened, we need to carry out urgent maintenance so people can book tests.

“We have to close the booking service until Wednesday 26 August and are sorry for any inconvenience caused.”

Huge backlog

The driving test booking service reopenned at 8am on Friday morning having been suspended from 20 March due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

However, by 8pm that evening, the server had become overwhelmed by visitors and candidates were unable to complete their bookings.

Instead, many attempting to access the page were met with an error message.

According to the DVSA, some 210,000 tests were cancelled and tens of thousands more were delayed because of the virus.

Additional reporting by PA

Source Article