Monday, 8 October 2012

The ABI On Learning To Drive - An Overhaul

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) are calling for a complete overhaul to the way in which young people learn to drive.

The proposals have come about due to the number of young drivers aged under 25 who are involved in road accidents. In fact one in every three people who die on British roads are aged under 25.

With 27% of car insurance injury claims involving a young driver aged between 17 - 24 it is increasingly more important to help improve road safety.

The Director General of the ABI, Otto Thoresen commented:

“Radical action is needed to reduce the tragic waste of young lives on our roads, especially among the 17-24 age group.  A car is potentially a lethal weapon, and we must do more to help young drivers better deal with the dangers of driving. Improving the safety of young drivers will also mean that they will face lower motor insurance costs.”

The ABI have put together a list of proposals to help improve the safety of young drivers, including:

• A minimum learning period of a year prior to taking the driving test. This is to ensure that learner drivers gain more supervised practice before taking to the road by themselves.

• A complete ban on taking intensive driving courses as the only means of learning to drive.

• A reduction in the age at which young people can start learning from 17 to 16.5 years of age.

• A graduated driver license - to include restrictions on the number of young people that can be driven by a young driver in the first 6 months after passing their driving test. This is because figures produced by the ABI suggest that the risk of a crash is significantly increased when driving with young passengers. The graduated license would also include:

• A restriction on young drivers driving between 11pm and 4am - similar to iKube's black box insurance scheme. However, there would be an exemption that allows young drivers to drive to a place of work or connected with education.

• A lower blood alcohol driving limit. This would effectively be a zero limit as it would only allow for the consumption of alcohol linked products - such as mouthwash.