Home Menu Search

UK Government looks at steps to make new drivers safer

18 July 2019

As part of the UK Department for Transport’s upcoming two-year road safety action plan graduated driver licensing is being explored further in a bid to cut new driver crashes. Research will look at the impact of limiting what less experienced drivers can do in their first few months on the road.

New drivers could face limits on what they can do on the road, to ease them into a lifetime of safe driving.

The government will commit in its road safety action plan, to be published on 19th July to explore further whether graduated driver licensing — or a similar scheme — should be introduced in England

These schemes could put restrictions on new drivers, such as a minimum learning period, not driving at night, or not driving with passengers under a certain age in the car.

One in 5 new drivers crashes within their first year on the road, and so any changes would be designed to help reduce this number and improve road safety.

Evidence available on The Road Safety Observatory suggests that in Great Britain the introduction of multiple components of Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) will result in saving at least 4,478 casualties, which is a conservative estimation . 

Limitations of passenger numbers (in general) and on driving between midnight and 5 a.m., are ideas that enjoy the support of over 60% of British people.

GDL schemes already operate in New Zealand; New South Wales and Victoria in Australia; New York and California in the USA; Ontario and British Columbia in Canada and in Sweden. However, schemes of this nature in the UK have previously been rejected due to concerns that it may potentially restrict new drivers’ access to jobs and education.

Government will consult on the proposals. Comments from Fleet News, IAM RoadSmart and RAC highlight some of the challenges which need to be faced when introducing GDL.





Related news, events and information

GDL updates casualty reduction estimates

23 May 2018 – Given the renewed focus on Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL), the RAC Foundation has used the latest available...

Novice drivers - evidence review and evaluation

10 October 2013 – TRL research, commissioned by the DfT, into the likely impacts of a graduated driver licensing (GDL) scheme for...

Supporting New Drivers in Great Britain

17 January 2023 – This report, prepared by TRL for the RAC Foundation and the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund, finds that graduated...

Study confirms benefits of graduated driver licensing

14 October 2022 – Graduated driver licensing (GDL) can improve road safety whilst having minimal impact on new drivers' access to...

Graduated licensing for young drivers

17 July 2013 – Story from the RAC Foundation One in five young drivers (17-24 year-olds) will have an accident within six...

ABI calls for an overhaul in how young people learn to drive

6 October 2012 – A safer start for young drivers - ABI calls for an overhaul in how young people learn to drive Radical...

British 2019 Action Plan

19 July 2019 – The Department for Transport has set out a major package of measures to reduce the number of people killed and...

DfT wants telematics research before young driver green paper

3 February 2014 – Road Safety GB reports that DfT has ruled out publishing a green paper on young driver safety until it has more...

Young Driver Focus - Speaker Annoncement

12 January 2023 – Dr Shaun Helman, Chief Scientist at TRL, will be leading one of our five key topics at the Young Driver Focus...