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Ladyman unveils driver testing and training revamp PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 28 February 2007

A fundamental overhaul of driver training and testing was confirmed by Road Safety Minister Dr Stephen Ladyman at the RoSPA Road Safety Congress. For the first time, new parameters for educating young people about safe driving skills were set out, with a consultation expected later in the year.

The publication of the Three Year Review of Road Safety Strategy comes as tough new penalties for illegally using a mobile phone while driving are enacted (from Tuesday 27 February). It recommends a new approach to educating young people about road safety and teaching them to drive, which will include the introduction of a new competency and knowledge framework, a modern training syllabus and new assessment criteria.

Dr Ladyman said:

"Driving instructors currently do a very good job, but the systems they are required to operate within no longer reflect the demands of our modern world. Educating young drivers is a serious issue. We know that, of the fatal accidents where blame could be assigned, young drivers were nearly 12 times more likely to be at fault than older drivers.

"Although the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) has made many important changes over the past few years, we must change perceptions about driving and road safety. The only way to achieve this is to educate young people in a different way about the dangers of driving badly, and so positively influence their long-term behaviour and habits. And that means introducing a more rigorous system of instruction and testing.

"Our Three Year Review sets out the parameters of what we want to achieve and I am pleased the DSA is making good progress on providing the detail of how we will go about this."

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