• Teens with learner's permit in Georgia can skip the driving test
  • Gov. Brian Kemp is waiving the road test during the pandemic
  • Parents worry over the risks of having licensed drivers who didn't pass a road test

Teenagers getting their licenses in Georgia could now skip the driving test amid the coronavirus pandemic, but parents are concerned about the consequences of this executive order from Gov. Brian Kemp.

Kemp signed the order on April 23, which waives the road test requirement for obtaining a new driver's license. Thus, drivers with a learner's permit, who are 16 years old and above and who have no violations, are no longer required to get a driving test as part of the state's social distancing measures.

This executive order will be in effect until the Public Health State of Emergency is lifted in Georgia.

Teens with learner's permit in Georgia may skip the driving test to get a driver's license during the coronavirus pandemic. Flickr

However, teenagers who qualify, which means that they have undergone 40 hours of supervised driver training, will need their parent's permission to upgrade from a learner's permit to a driver's license.

"What the executive order does, it allows the teen driver to go to that next phase without having to take that road test because of social distancing problems, obviously, in trying to provide the test," the Department of Driver Services commissioner Spencer Moore said.

Before the stay-at-home orders, Georgia facilitated 5,000 driving tests for teenagers a week. Since the pandemic, the department has a 30,000 backlog, but the majority could now skip the process.

Some parents, however, are concerned that there are teenagers who will get a driver's license without actually passing a driving test.

"I have mixed feelings because I do feel we need to keep social distancing," mom Alicia Wiggins said. "But I also feel nervous about having drivers on the road that haven’t actually passed a road test.”

Another mother said that people would be at greater risk if the driving tests are eliminated.

"I think it would be beneficial to have an unbiased set of eyes on [the] driver," said one parent. "I think I might be quick to let her get her license not knowing if she knows all laws."

Meanwhile, Kemp started to ease some of the state's safety measures against the coronavirus since April 24. Barbershops, salons, spas, gyms and fitness centers, theaters, and restaurants have resumed business with some restrictions. However, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation said that Georgia should have considered reopening by June 22 to lessen the risks of the virus spread.