Pat Delaney, Director of Operations, Driver & Vehicle Agency, Northern Ireland

Pat Delaney is the Director of Operations in the Driver & Vehicle Agency in Northern Ireland.  Pat has responsibility for driver testing, vehicle testing and driver licensing and he also leads the Graduated Driver Licensing project.

Pat was the driving force behind the introduction of new technology to assist driving examiners record the results of driving tests using tablet devices and the introduction of a new integrated driver licensing system centred around the customer needs with online functionality.

Pat was also instrumental in establishing a new Driving Examiner Training Academy in Northern Ireland, which is also accessed by other driver testing authorities to train their prospective driving examiners.

Pat was elected vice-president of CIECA, the International Commission for Driver Testing, in June 2018.

Before joining the Driver & Vehicle Agency in 2012, Pat was head of Organisational Design and Information Technology in another major organisation.

Presentation: Northern Ireland Graduated Driver Licensing Scheme - The driving force for safe driving for life

Learning to drive is an important skill for many people and is often seen as a rite of passage that will open up a range of opportunities for educational, social and vocational activities. With this comes a great deal of personal responsibility which is often missing from the qualities expected from Learner and Novice drivers. This is evident with the unacceptably high number of new, particularly young, drivers involved in collisions each year.

Safe driving is about developing the right attitude and approach, combined with safe driving techniques. New drivers, particularly young drivers, will start driving thinking why they want to drive? What each journey will involve? And, how can I make every drive a safer drive?

The Northern Ireland Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) scheme introduces a number of measures governing learner and new drivers:

  • A six month Mandatory Minimum Learning Period.
  • The removal of the 45mph speed restriction to allow training at higher speeds.
  • Mandatory Programme of Training and logbook.
  • Night time passenger restrictions.
  • Mandatory display of a new driver plate for two years.
  • Optional motorway lessons with an Instructor (ADI) in a vehicle fitted with dual controls.

Learner drivers will follow a Programme of Training to acquire the experience, knowledge and skills to become a safe and responsible driver over time in lower risk environments. The Programme, which must be completed before taking the driving test, will be evidenced by a logbook which must be completed by the learner driver and their trainer.