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Motoring experts are calling for tougher driving tests in UK

by LLB staff reporter
14th Jun 24 7:43 am

Motoring experts are calling for tougher practical driving tests to reduce accidents on UK roads.

Motoring experts at Absolute Reg are calling for all new drivers to be tested driving in dark conditions and turbulent weather.

They believe testing learners in all weather and road conditions will increase safety and reduce the likelihood of collisions on the roads.

Over 70 per cent of driving test passers in Great Britain are aged between 17 and 24, and around a fifth of all killed or seriously injured casualties from collisions will involve a young car driver.

By age 23, nearly 40% of young British drivers will have been involved in a road crash.

To obtain a UK driver’s licence, motorists must pass a theory and a practical test which usually lasts around 40 minutes.

During the practical test, motorists will be asked to drive independently, reverse the vehicle and show their general driving ability in various road and traffic conditions except motorways.

Many European countries require additional tests so new motorists know how to drive in different conditions to make safer road users.

By law and before they can get a licence, Swedish drivers must complete a compulsory drugs and narcotics course and a four-hour slippery road test which teaches them what to do if they lose control of their vehicle.

Out of 27 EU countries, Sweden has the lowest number of fatalities per million inhabitants, even though Swedish passenger cars are younger than the EU average.

In Finland, which is considered to have a world-class standard of driving, it takes two years to obtain a full driving licence and learners must take mandatory skid-pan sessions and night-driving courses.

Jake Smith, director of Absolute Reg, believes similar driving systems in the UK will make safer roads, especially for new drivers.

He said: “Unfortunately the combination of being young and a new driver can be deadly, and it is shocking that by age 23, nearly 40 per cent of young British motorists will have been involved in an accident on the roads.

“New drivers are at a higher risk of crashing because of inexperience and the inability to spot hazards.

“Added risk factors include the fact most new drivers on Britain’s roads are young people, who tend to exhibit overconfidence leading to risky behaviour behind the wheel.

“Practical driving tests should be made tougher in the UK to improve the standard of driving in new motorists and ultimately reduce the number of young drivers involved in accidents.

“Driving tests vary worldwide, but it is clear that those with better driving education have reduced traffic crashes and safer roads.

“We believe driving tests should include mandatory tests for driving in dark conditions and turbulent weather conditions so new motorists are prepared for everything when they are driving independently.”

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