The law is changing so that learners can drive on motorways with an approved driving instructor in a dual-control car

Learner drivers will be able to have lessons on motorways from 2018 in a move intended to improve road safety.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling confirmed the law change which allows learners on motorways with an approved driving instructor in a dual-control car.

The Government said the move “will provide a broader range of real life experiences and better prepare learners for independent driving when they pass their test”.

However, despite being introduced to learner lessons, it will not be included as part of the driving test. It is understood that this is because learners in some areas of the country such as Cornwall and Dorset do not have access to motorways. 

At the moment, learners cannot drive on a motorway until after they have passed their test. It is, however, offered as part of the Government's official Pass Plus scheme, an optional add-on educational programme for new drivers.

The changes to the law come following a Department for Transport consultation earlier this year, which received wide support from both learner drivers and approved driving instructors. The changes apply to England, Wales and Scotland.

Talking about the changes, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “Younger drivers are up to seven times more likely to be killed or seriously injured compared with drivers over twenty-five and lack of experience is an important factor.

“Allowing learners to drive on motorways in a supportive environment will help them develop a practical understanding of how to use motorways safely before driving independently.”

RAC road safety spokesman Pete Williams said: “While motorways are statistically our safest roads, it can be daunting using them for the first time after passing the driving test. Giving learners the option to gain valuable experience on our fastest and busiest roads should further improve safety and enhance the confidence of new drivers."

British School of Motoring development boss Jasmine Halstead added: “If learners aren’t allowed to practise on motorways under supervision then some will avoid motorways, and others will use motorways incorrectly when they have passed their test.”

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14 August 2017

This is a good idea, I just hope they get taught the correct way, as most drivers in the uk don't have a clue. They bimble down slip roads, don't indicate and then move straight to the middle lane, where they stay until it's time to leave the motorway.

I saw two P plate drivers on the M4 on Saturday, both just sat in the middle lane (which can now get you a £60 fine and 3 points on your licence), both of these drivers clearly did not understand the rule of the Highway Code, or the fact that they could possibly loose their licence and end up having to resit their driving test if the police could be bothered to enforce the law !!!

Hopefully it will also be pointed out to them that driving with full beam on (unless the road ahead is clear of traffic) is illegal and is completely unacceptable behaviour, as that is the new curse we have to put up with on a regular basis on British roads :0(.

14 August 2017

Most drivers in the UK dont have a clue on ALL roads, full stop, not just on motorways.

14 August 2017
Can see nothing wrong with this, they can't be any worse on the motorways than a lot of so-called professional drivers !

14 August 2017

I would think that learner Cars would have to be highly visible so that others gave them room time to help them.

Peter Cavellini.

14 August 2017

I think (and hope) this will be a positive move. Driving on motorways can be daunting - it's all very well teaching learners the rules of the road but they also need the confidence to go with it. Being with an instructor who can guide and encourage them should help build confidence and hopefully improve the standard of driving. Have to agree with A88A, two of biggest issues are people failing to accelerate properly on a slip road and the good old middle lane hogs.

14 August 2017

Motorway driving, along with night driving has been mandatory in some  countries for years.. The only problem is, some locations have no readily accessible motorways. 

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