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Ohio BMV resumes in-car driver exams Tuesday

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Posted at 11:30 AM, Jun 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-01 11:30:13-04

CLEVELAND — Changes are coming for new drivers in Ohio, as the Bureau of Motor Vehicles makes changes for testing for a driver’s license.

The Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles will resume in-car testing on June 1, going back to the standard test model it used prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s the first time instructors have conducted in-car testing since March 2020 when the BMV shut down due to the pandemic.

After reopening in June, the BMV has conducted a modified test. COVID protocols prevented an instructor and a driver to be in the same vehicle, so instructors gave the test from outside the car. Rather than driving on public streets, the BMV set up closed courses in parking lots.

“One of the biggest problems for us was space. Because it’s on a closed course in a parking lot, not all of our facilities could accommodate closed course,” said State Registrar for Motor Vehicles Charline Norman “We weren’t able to offer the skills test at all of our facilities. The return to in-car testing allows us to expand our services to all of our offices around the state.”

Norman said the BMV conducted about 500,000 of the modified tests.

When the in-car tests return, there will still be some safety protocols in place. Students and instructors will be required to wear a mask. Weather-permitting, the windows will be rolled down and instructors will utilize a plastic seat cover.

It’s recommended to schedule your driving exam online by utilizing the BMV website here.

The website also has an interactive document checklist that will help people bring in the right paperwork for a federally compliant license if they want one.

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