As you know, we often give advice on how to go about learning to drive. This might include how to look for a driving school, what’s required of you at your theory and practical tests, and of course, how to deal with those nerves! We’ve even given you advice on many of the driver learning resources there are out there.
If you’re someone who suffers from a disability (mental or physical), it might seem that gaining a full driving licence is a very small light at the end of a tunnel let alone being able to get a provisional licence so you can learn!
However, it’s not as difficult as you might think although there are certain rules and regulations that need to followed. If you try to apply for a provisional licence and don’t declare a disability (no matter how slight) the DVLA will want to look at more closely, it could mean a fine of £1,000 and you may have more difficulty being accepted in the future.
So, with that aside what types of disability should you declare?
What the DVLA Say
There are a plethora of medical conditions mentioned by the DVLA (too many to mention here) however, to give you an idea below are some of the more common:
- Epilepsy or any other illness that can cause blackouts or fits.
- Diabetes which has to be controlled with medication.
- Various heart conditions that could affect your ability to drive safely.
- Parkinson’s disease.
- Any form of sleep apnoea or narcolepsy.
As mentioned, there are other conditions you’re required to report but we’ve decided to list the most obvious for you. As you can see from the list, the DVLA are quite fair about this. Basically, any illness that may cause an interruption in concentration or the ability to control a vehicle should be registered.
You Can Still Learn to Drive
Just because you might be diagnosed with a condition the DVLA needs to know about, it doesn’t mean you can’t still learn to drive. In fact, there are many driving schools that specialise in helping people with all sorts of conditions gain their full licence.
Some schools are equipped with specially designed cars for those of you who have a physical problem. There are also expert driving instructors who have gone the extra mile whilst training, so they can help people with mental issues finally gain the freedom that driving a car can bring.
If you think you’re going to be singled out when it comes to expense and driving lessons think again! You’ll be treated just like anyone-else, and in fact there are many deals on “block” driving lessons to be had simply because lots of driving schools realise it may take you a little longer to learn.
As long as you’re honest and follow the proper channels required by law, there is absolutely no reason why you can’t join many other thousands of people who are in the same situation. Before you know it, you’ll have the “road” freedom you’ve always wanted!