IMPROVING SAFETY FOR YOUNG DRIVERS

October 21, 2013 9:46 AM

From left to right: volunteers Rhys, Damion, Jenny Willott MP, volunteer Ali and Placement Mentor Mike Gleeson

Jenny Willott, Liberal Democrat MP for Cardiff Central, has welcomed the publication by the Department of Transport of research on the safety of young drivers and the graduated driver licensing.

The Government is due to publish a Green Paper this year after considering the Transport Research Laboratory's report. Proposals include a probationary licence for the first year after passing the driving test, during which time drivers would face a curfew between 22:00 and 05:00 unless a passenger aged over 30 was in the car and all those under 30 would be banned from carrying any passengers also under 30. Other proposals under consideration for young drivers are a ban on all mobile phone use, including hands-free phones, and a lower alcohol limit.

Drivers in the 17-24 year old group drive 5% of the miles, but are involved in 20% of the accidents that cause death and serious injury.

Commenting Jenny Willott said:

"It is said that the most dangerous place to be in Britain is in the passenger seat of a newly qualified male driver. Sadly, every year, we have examples in my constituency of young people who die or are severely injured in traffic accidents, possibly also harming other people.

"Evidence from across the world shows that putting limitations on newly qualified drivers, for instance that they cannot drive at night or with young people as passengers in their car, reduces death and injury. It also reduces the cost of young drivers insuring their cars.

"Shortly, there will be a private members bill coming before parliament on graduated driver licensing and the Government is also looking into the issue. I would welcome young people who have just started driving or who are about to learn contacting me about their views on how such restrictions on their driving license would affect their employment or social life."

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