It’s a terrifying day for all when little Johnny drives unsupervised for the first time (unless you’re this guy). So it’ll come as no surprise to learn most motorists think young drivers would benefit from at least 35 hours of supervised training before their actual driving test.
A survey carried out by road safety charity Brake and insurance company Direct Line found 88 per cent of 1,000 surveyed drivers would prefer young drivers to undertake a healthy amount of supervised driving to ensure driving competence is sufficient.
Although supervised driving would likely increase the cost of passing a driving test and make the process longer, young drivers were surprisingly onboard with the idea. 69 per cent of drivers under the age of 25 agreed with the concept, with 58 per cent agreeing on at least 35 hours.
“Death and serious injury on roads is devastating, especially so when it involves someone young, with their whole life ahead of them,” Brake chief executive Julie Townsend explained. “Evidence on how to reduce young driver crashes is very clear; by introducing a system of graduated licensing we can expect to make real inroads to ending the devastation caused by young driver crashes.
“We’re calling on government to take bold steps by introducing all elements of graduated licensing – including a minimum learning period and post-test licence restrictions – but without compromising safety by simultaneously introducing changes that would increase risk, such as a lower minimum driving age,” she added.
The survey also revealed 90 per cent of respondents want mandatory lessons on motorways and in difficult conditions such as heavy rain or snow. Lessons on motorways and in less common driving situations fall under the remit of the Pass Plus scheme that drivers of any age can do after passing their test.
Other potential reforms include a zero tolerance policy of the drink-drive limit for novice drivers. In the past, the charity has also expressed a ban on late night driving and having friends in the car.
Acording to Brake, drivers between 17 and 24 years of age account for one fifth of all road deaths in the UK and a fifth of serious injuries even though they make up 12 per cent of the total number of motorists. It claims ‘graduated driver licensing’ would prevent 200 deaths and thousands of injuries every year.
Would supervised driving ahead of the test help young drivers or does the real learning start when no one is around to watch? Let us know, readers.