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Young Drivers Safety Report

Young Driver Safety – Focus Group Results (Department for Transport, June 2014)

 

This 94 page report (research debrief) gives the results of focus groups concerned with the safety of young drivers.

 

The report’s introduction makes clear the fact that young drivers are both a key issue (ie young people – particularly male – being more likely to be seriously injured or killed in a car accident) and a key opportunity (ie at a stage when interventions are possible, particularly with regard to driving tests and driving licences).

 

Two key interventions mentioned in the report were: (i) mandatory driving lessons covering the particularly high-risk areas, which are driving at night, driving on motorways and driving in rural areas; and (ii) graduated driving licensing, which involves a minimum 12 month learning period followed by a 12 month probationary period in which the new driver: (a) cannot drive between the hours of 11pm and 4am; (b) cannot drive a car with an engine bigger than 2.0 litre; and (c) drivers under 24 years of age cannot drive passengers under 24 years of age (other than immediate family members).

 

The views of three groups of people were sought during the focus groups: young drivers, the parents of young drivers and employers.

 

In terms of young drivers, the group was mixed by age (17-24 years), gender and rural/urban locations.

 

In the executive summary, it is noted that the key to being a ‘good driver’ is mostly seen as building confidence. However, it was accepted by the different groups that over-confidence can become a problem when it results in the taking of risks. This is important as it shows that less careful driving can be the result of a young driver’s attitude, and not their driving competence.

 

People agreed that learning to drive is a process which continues after the passing of the test. Whilst people commented that they felt the test was fit for purpose, many agreed that the test should cover defensive driving and driving on motorways.

 

Graduated driving licensing was resisted by all groups as it was seen to impose very inconvenient restrictions on young drivers without making a significant contribution to road safety.

 

However, mandatory driving lessons were supported – they were seen as being worth the investment and assumed to make a significant contribution to road safety.

 

In the conclusion to the report, the following points were made:-

 

  • Learning to drive is the building of confidence
  • Learning to drive continues after the test
  • Young drivers take 3 key risks on the road (speed, multi-tasking and carrying passengers)
  • There is widespread resistance to graduated driver licensing
  • There is a lot of support for mandatory driving lessons

 

 If you are a young person charged with a motoring offence, it is vital that the court see more than your age.  You will need an expertly prepared case and that’s where we come in.  Our specialist team are here to help.  Call us now on 01623 600645.

 

Smoking In Cars Illegal from 1 October 2015

Smoking In Cars Illegal From 1 October 2015

 

From 1 October 2015, smoking in cars carrying children will become illegal.

 

It will become an offence for any adult travelling in a car with anyone under 18 to smoke.

 

The punishment will be a £60 fine or points.

 

Drivers who allow passengers to smoke in their vehicles whilst children are also in the car will face a fine of up to £10,000.

 

If you are being charged with a motoring offence, call us now for expert advice on 01623 600645.

 

Can I Get My Licence Back Early After A Ban?

If you are disqualified for 3 years or more you can apply to have the disqualification lifted.

 

We have dealt with a lot of these types of cases and have a good record in them.

 

One particular case touched us greatly. We were approached by someone who had been disqualified for 5 years for dangerous driving. This happened when he was a young guy, he had a lot happening in his life at the time and he drove dangerously losing control and injuring someone.

 

During his time in prison he reflected on how his life was going and was determined to turn it around. When he came out of prison he got a job, settled down and was doing well.

 

The only dark cloud on the horizon was his disqualification. He was well thought of at work and was in line for a promotion. It meant more responsibility and more money but it also required him to be able to drive.

 

That’s where we came in. We made an application to have the disqualification lifted and started to build a case for him. By the time he came to court a month later he was fully prepared and the same Judge that had sent him to prison and told him that he would be very reluctant to lift the ban heard the case. We were able to show the judge how our clients life had changed and we were delighted when the Judge not only complimented him and his legal team but lifted the disqualification.

 

Of course our client was delighted, he had served his punishment and learnt his lesson and now felt he could move on with his life.

 

 

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