Young motorists in Scotland could see restrictions imposed on their freedom to drive, should proposals put forward by a Scottish MSP come to fruition.

In a bid to improve road safety and reduce the disproportionately high number of young drivers killed on British roads, MSP David Stewart is proposing a graduated driving licence system, which he estimates could save up to 22 lives each year.

He is proposing a three-part pilot scheme, the first of which would require newly qualified 17 and 18-year-old drivers to display a ‘P’ plate on their car for 12 months after passing their test.

Driver subject to this would also not be allowed to carry passengers under the age of 25, unless accompanied by a qualified driver of at least that age.

Despite Scotland recently introducing a much lower drink-drive limit than in England and Wales, the proposed system would also take a zero-tolerance approach to young drink drivers, with those found to have any quantity of alcohol in their system likely to face a driving ban.

In an Auto Express report Stewart said: “Graduated licence schemes have been introduced in many countries across the world and they are proven and evidenced to reduce fatalities amongst young and novice drivers.”

Although Scotland doesn’t follow in England’s example of offering Driver Awareness courses to motorists found to be a few miles per hour over the speed limit, it is soon to adopt a system of formal warnings, which would provide a less punitive method of dealing with minor traffic offences than a fine and penalty points.

Chief Superintendent Iain Murray, Scotland’s head of roads policing, told Auto Express: “We are talking about people who might abide by the law in every other aspect yet fail to realise the risk they pose by driving on autopilot or failing to pay enough attention to what’s going on around them.”

Do you think graduated driving licences and formal warnings are likely to improve road safety? Have your say in the comments section below.

Picture: Fotolia

Daljinder Nagra


July 16, 2015