Brake comments as new driving test comes into effect

News from Brake
Friday, 1 December 2017

Car driving tests in England, Scotland and Wales are changing from Monday (4 December 2017). The new test will include the requirement to follow directions from a sat nav, answer vehicle safety questions while driving and perform different reversing manoeuvres. It will also feature a longer independent driving section [1].

Commenting on the changes, Jason Wakeford, director of campaigns for Brake, the road safety charity, said: "One in four drivers aged 18-24 crash within two years of taking their test, which is why a greater overhaul of the learning to drive system is needed to reduce needless deaths and injuries [2].

"A graduated driver licensing system, including a minimum learning period, mandatory training on rural roads and restrictions for newly qualified drivers − such as a zero drink-drive limit − will allow novice drivers to build their skills and experience over a longer period of time. This approach has dramatically reduced road casualties in countries including Australia and New Zealand, and could save some 400 lives a year if implemented in the UK [3].

"There is also the need for better and more affordable public transport, so fewer young people see starting driving in their teens as a necessity."


Notes to editors

[1] Driving test changes: December 2017, Department for Transport, 2017

[2] Young drivers at risk, The AA, 2012

[3] Graduated Driver Licensing: A regional analysis of potential casualty savings in Great Britain, RAC Foundation, 2014                                               

About Brake

Brake is a national road safety charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies.

We do this through national campaignscommunity education, services for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.

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Tags: learning to drive young drivers graduated licencing GDL DVSA