Public backs restrictions on young drivers

July 2, 2014 | By | In News

Two thirds of motorists are in favour of newly qualified drivers having restrictions imposed on when they can drive and how many passengers they can carry, a new study by the RAC Foundation has revealed.

A poll of over 2,000 people found that the majority (some 68 per cent) would be in favour of reforms to the qualification procedure, namely the introduction of graduated licencing for learner drivers under the age of 24.

Graduated licensing should be seen for what it is: a method of preserving long term freedom and health, not curtailing it.”

A similar number of people supported a limit to the number of passengers freshly licenced drivers could carry, while 61 per cent of those polled felt that youngsters should not be allowed to use the roads between midnight and five in the morning.

The proposals are aimed at curbing careless and dangerous driving by young drivers, with the ultimate aim of reducing the number of road deaths in the 17-24-age category, which are disproportionately high.

Currently, around one in eight of all casualties resulting from road accidents involve a driver aged 17-19, despite the fact that they represent only one in 60 of all fully qualified drivers.

Surprisingly, even those in the age group that would be affected largely showed support for the proposed reforms, with 41 per cent of young drivers in favour and 32 per cent in opposition.

However, despite promises to introduce legislation to tackle the issue, the Government has been criticised for stalling on the issue after a green paper outlining the proposed measures was repeatedly delayed.

Prof Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “The current government has repeatedly promised a green paper on young driver safety and repeatedly failed to produce it,” reported the Telegraph.

“Graduated licensing should be seen for what it is: a method of preserving long term freedom and health, not curtailing it.”

How would you change the way driving licences are awarded to ensure greater safety for young drivers? Have your say below.

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