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New tests for safer drivers

2012-01-24 07:31

TESTING TIMES: According to a British road safety agency, driving tests need to include rural road sections to better prepare younger drivers for real-world driving.

LONDON, England - The British Institute of Advanced Motorists wants the British government to make driving on rural roads a mandatory part of the driving test.

Research conducted by the road safety agency shows that 82% of rural fatal and serious injuries are on single-carriageway roads; only 18% are on freeways and dual carriageways - but the current driving test fails to take this into account.

The IAM said: "Knowledge of parking, emergency stops and low-speed manoeuvres is important but dealing with high-speed corners, bad weather and overtaking are far more vital skills."


It has written to the country’s road safety minister to share its views on how it believes the government should deal with the highest risk group – young drivers.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said: "More than half the cars on our roads are rated at four or the maximum five stars in European safety tests and the figure is even higher for new cars. Our roads are also getting safer in their design but the roads where drivers, especially young drivers, are most frequently killed and injured are still not consistently part of the driving test.

"Driver and rider error is a contributory factor in two thirds of accidents. We can only improve our cars and roads so far. The challenge now is to improve the humans that drive them."

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