The subject of young drivers is back on the agenda with a vengeance this week, largely because the government was due to deliver its green paper on the proposed changes to improve standards and safety. Sadly, that deadline has slipped to a date this autumn, but thankfully that hasn’t taken the subject off the agenda.
Proposals include introducing a minimum learning period before candidates are permitted to sit their test, and enforcing motorway and night-time driver training. In addition, new drivers may get an extended probationary period under which they will lose their licence if they accrue six penalty points.
Part of the reason for the deal, you suspect, is that it’s no easy job delivering something meaningful. A curfew, for instance, has been proposed, to keep young drivers off the road late at night. Or a restriction on how many young people can be in a car at one time. Both sound good in theory, but more pratically minded observers point out that the police can’t even enforce insurance, with more than a million uninsured cars said to be on our roads. How, then, could such new legislation work?
Encouragingly, however, a set of luminaries at a talk organized by black box insurance provider Ingenie on Monday could agree on some basic principles. Among the speakers were NCAP chief Max Mosley, motoring campaigner Quentin Wilson, driving school boss Ian McIntosh, RoadSafe boss Adrian Walsh, Cranfield University’s Lisa Dorn and Andy Watson, boss of insurer Ageas UK.