Young drivers feel ill prepared for life on the roads, according to a new report.
The report, which has been launched by The Co-operative Insurance, indicates that lessons are failing to prepare young people for life on the roads and that they want an overhaul of the learning process.
After passing their driving tests many young people are not ready to face everyday situations such as driving on motorways, on their own or in the dark.
As a result of their experiences as new drivers, an overwhelming 62% support the introduction of a minimum learning period.
These are amongst the findings of the report that examines the views and experiences of young drivers. It comes ahead of a Green Paper set to be published later this year outlining Government plans on how to tackle the safety of young drivers and cut insurance costs.
Almost half (48%) felt unprepared for motorway driving after passing their driving test and around one in three (29%) find they are not ready for night-time driving. The same number (29%) say they are incapable of driving alone after passing their test.
The study also found that one in seven new young drivers (14%) consider themselves to be ‘unprepared’ to drive at all.
James Hillon, director of general insurance at The Co-operative Insurance, said: “A lot of public debate is taking place on how safety can be improved and insurance premiums cut for young drivers, but the views of young motorists themselves are rarely heard.
“Far from being the stereotypical image of the ‘boy-racer’, this study shows that many are not confident to face everyday situations on Britain’s roads in the early years, despite months of lessons. Young people say that the current system fails to prepare them for driving on motorways, on their own or in poor conditions.
“They want to see a more comprehensive approach and are hugely in favour of a minimum learning period for all new drivers to fully prepare them, and we fully support this.”
The study from The Co-operative Insurance is based on the views of over 2,000 young drivers*.
Roads Minister Stephen Hammond said: “Improving young drivers’ safety is a priority for the Government – that is why we have already improved the driving test so that it better reflects real-life conditions on the road, rather than focusing on specific manoeuvres.
“We are also considering a range of options to ensure learners and newly qualified drivers are properly prepared for the road and we will publish our proposals later in the year.”
The report – ‘Young Drivers: Are they ready for the road?’ – can be viewed at http://www.co-operative.coop/corporate/Young_Drivers_are_they_ready_for_the_road.pdf