AT LONDON’S DRIVETEST CENTRE, DON’T COUNT ON BEING OUT BY LUNCH

Published on February 26, 2019

November 21, 2017

By Andrew Lupton, CBC News

Ahmed Al Mousa is new to Ontario, but he’s become an expert when it comes to navigating the long wait times at London’s DriveTest Centre in the city’s south end.

Al Mousa, a pharmacist and researcher at Western University, moved to London from Saskatchewan a year ago. He’s now helping his wife Majd Al-Hejoj — who’s driven for nine years in Jordan — get an Ontario licence.

But getting the licence has meant three trips to the DriveTest Centre, each with a wait of about three hours.

“This is brutal,” Al Mousa told CBC News on Monday, while he waited for Al-Hejoj to take her written driver’s test.

“They have only two employees working behind those windows. It doesn’t seem to be going smooth in there.”

Many customers on Monday said they’d been waiting there for hours to take a test or update information on their driver’s licence.

Ben Roberts is a truck driver who must make regular visits to the centre’s crowded lobby to update medical information on his commercial driver’s licence. Each visit requires time off work — one licence update even spanned over two days.

“I arrived at 3:30 p.m. and by 5:30 my number hadn’t been called and they told me I’d have to come back the next day,” said Roberts.

“It’s frustrating trying to book time off work… I have a busy schedule. It’s time that I don’t really have, but now I’ll have to make it up.”

Facebook page for London’s DriveTest centre has many comments with complaints about long wait times.

“I think their goal is to see how many people they can make snap in a day,” one user wrote.