Written answers

Wednesday, 19 January 2022

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Driver Licences

Photo of Catherine MurphyCatherine Murphy (Kildare North, Social Democrats)
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271. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the status of his programme of work to streamline the process of court information on drivers disqualified in court; his plans to automate the current manual process of receiving notification of driver disqualifications from the Courts Service via the National Driving Licence Service; the timeframe for his Department and the Road Safety Authority to complete this work; the cost to date for the RSA to use the external provider (details supplied) to input the data from the Courts Service on disqualified drivers manually onto the information technology systems; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2129/22]

Photo of Hildegarde NaughtonHildegarde Naughton (Galway West, Fine Gael)
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The disqualification of drivers is an important road safety measure; it keeps dangerous drivers off our roads and it acts as a deterrent to possible disqualification, thereby reducing the risk of drivers engaging in bad behaviour. Accordingly, proper administration and enforcement of driver disqualification is critical to safety on our roads. The disqualification of drivers and the enforcement of the various provisions is a shared responsibility of the Road Safety Authority (RSA), the Courts Service, An Garda Síochána and my Department.

Where a driver is convicted and given a driving disqualification by the Courts, the current process involves the Courts Service entering the details on their own Criminal Case Tracking System (CCTS), and then manually printing and sending the disqualification notices to the RSA external provider. The external provider subsequently records the details of the disqualification on the driver record on the Department National Vehicle and Driver File (NVDF), on behalf of the RSA.

A project is now underway to provide for electronic transfer of such driver disqualifications details to the NVDF,  once the time period to lodge an appeal has passed, and no appeal has been lodged. My officials have been engaged with both the Courts Service and the RSA on the matter for the past number of months, and the business requirements and the technical specifications of how this automated interface will work are now being finalised. It is envisaged that the new automated process will be completed by the end of Q1, 2022.

I understand that the role of the provider itself is broader than just entry of such driver disqualifications on the NVDF. The cost to date of the external provider is a matter for the RSA, and I have forwarded that part of the Question to the Authority for direct reply.  I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a response has not been received within ten days.


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