Northamptonshire taxi drivers face English and maths tests

Tests in maths, English, advanced driving and vehicle maintenance could be made compulsory for new taxi drivers in a Northamptonshire town.

Wellingborough councillors are to discuss licensing of drivers and operators at a meeting on 21 November.

The aim is to improve standards and make journeys safer for passengers.

Drivers already licensed will also have to take the advanced driving test if they are subjects of complaints or have an accident that was their fault.

The new policy will be put out to public consultation when formulated.

"At the moment only Hackney Carriage drivers are asked to undertake a knowledge test, which covers specific routes without the use of a map but also acts as a basic English test," a Wellingborough Borough Council spokesman said.

"Under the new proposals private hire drivers would also be required to take a test to check their understanding of English and a basic maths test so that they are confident in taking payment and giving change."

Peter Morrall, chairman of the community committee, said: "This document brings all our policies together and goes that little bit further to improve standards even more.

"A taxi driver is in a position of trust and we need to make sure that the person applying is considered fit and proper to hold a licence, and that their driving and vehicle is safe."

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