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In a new report on driver testing and education, the government is being urged to implement a progressive licensing system in order to safeguard young new drivers.

According to the report, published by road safety charity Brake and insurance company AXA UK, young drivers aged 17 to 24 account for 6% of all license holders in Britain. However, they account for 18% of all car drivers killed or seriously injured.

The research also found that one in five drivers will crash within their first year on the road, further backing the claim that newly qualified young drivers are the most at risk on our roads.

In light of these findings, the report urges the government to review road safety, with the top recommendation being implementing a progressive licensing system. This would safeguard young learners and newly qualified drivers through new regulations such as a lower blood alcohol limit and a reduction in the number of similar-aged passengers they can carry.

These safeguarding elements have proved successful in other countries such as New Zealand, where a similar system led to a 23% reduction in car crash injuries for young drivers aged 15 to 19 and a 12% reduction for motorists aged 20 to 24.

The report also includes survey results showing that 63% of motorists would support a phased licensing system for young and newly qualified drivers. A further 81% of their respondents also agreed that motorway practice should be required before passing the driving test.

Ross Moorlock, interim CEO at Brake, said: “This report shows that nearly two-thirds (63%) of drivers surveyed said they would support a phased or progressive licensing system, and only one-sixth (16%) would be against it.

“This overwhelming majority demonstrates that there is clear public support and appetite for a system like this, and for ensuring we prioritise the safety of young drivers on our roads. We ask the government to ensure that in another six years, we aren’t still asking for a system that we know could help safeguard young and new drivers on our roads.”

The report, released on the 14th of July, can be accessed for free here: Driver Testing and Education

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