Learner drivers need a harder test, black boxes or an extended learning period, according to a survey.
We’ve all been learner drivers at some point and can remember just how hard it was to jump through all the necessary hoops in order to be free on the road. However, we may also remember that daunting feeling of being a freshly-qualified driver, finally allowed to drive without supervision and feeling somewhat undertrained and unqualified.
Are learner drivers learning enough? Should they have a compulsory extended learning period, harder tests or forced to have black boxes in order to be better and safer drivers and reduce the accident rate in newly-qualified and young drivers?
Well, an independent survey undertaken by Young Driver asked 1,000 UK motorists just that and found that 38% of them, over a third, agreed that learner drivers should have a compulsory extended learning period.
Statistics show that as many as 1 in 5 newly-qualified drivers have some type of accident within 6 months of passing.
In the survey, there were many other options for respondents to choose from and the results were as follows:
- 32% agreed with introducing learning to drive and road safety from a driver’s perspective at school
- 27% agreed with the introduction of a more difficult driving test
- 35% agreed with the introduction of a graduated licence
- 30% agreed with making a black box compulsory
- 20% agreed with implementing a curfew
- 21% agreed with limiting the number or type of passengers allowed
- 26% agreed with under 17s being educated on driving skills and important safety messages
Overall, though, the most agreed upon option was for learner drivers to have an extended learning period with the second most agreeable option being the introduction of a graduated licence.
A graduated licence involves newly-qualified drivers having restrictions on what they’re able to do for an initial period. For instance, in Northern Ireland, new drivers are not allowed to drive above 45mph for the first year of driving and must also display ‘R’ plates during this time to communicate to other drivers that they are a ‘Restricted’ driver. Unfortunately, the concept of graduated drivers has been largely ignored and rejected by the UK government already.
So, that leaves us with other possibilities such as extended learning periods, introducing more driving education into schools and making a black box compulsory.
It just so happens that Young Driver have been offering extended learning since 2009 by allowing under 17s to have driving lessons with qualified instructors. By starting to learn how to drive at a younger age, these youths will have been exposed to the world of driving for a longer time than if they would have waited until turning 17.
Sue Waterfield, head of marketing at Young Driver, said:
“We’ve always felt education was the key – making sure our young people have plenty of time and opportunity to really get to grips with the skills and attitude they need to be a safe driver, rather than just restricting what they can do. Twenty-nine per cent of respondents to the survey felt the age of learning to drive should be increased. But teens are always going to want to pass their test as quickly as possible once they’re able, whatever that age is, so it makes sense to allow them to start safely building and practicing the necessary skills from a much earlier age.”
Let us know what you think the answer is to creating safer new drivers in the comments! If you enjoyed this, you may also like: Is Nio The New Tesla?
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