Raise driving age to 18, says government report

11 October 2013

A report commissioned by the government has suggested raising the age of driving to 18. In an attempt to cut road accidents and Fast and Furious races in pimped Vauxhall Novas, it also suggests a 12 month ‘Learner Stage’ which will involve 100 hours of driving practice during the day and 20 hours at night.

The report, from the Transport Research Laboratory, even recommended a curfew for young drivers between 10am and 5pm, unless they have an adult over 30 in the car with them (or their Mum, gripping the dashboard and wiping her sweaty brow with a vanilla Magic Tree.)

Statistically, teenage drivers cause 20% of accidents on UK roads, and young men aged between 17 and 20 are seven times more at risk of causing an accident than male drivers in other age brackets. Stephen Glaister from the RAC welcomed the proposals, saying:

‘Young people are four times more likely to die in a road accident than as a result of drink or drugs. Circumstances conspire against young drivers. Their youth and lack of experience create a deadly mix which means one in five will have an accident within the first six months of passing their test.’

But are teenage drivers any less stupid at 18 than they are at 17?

TOPICS:   Motoring   Consumer Advice


  • JonB
    They're no less stupid at 18 and they can legally buy alcohol too.
  • Camp Y.
    So, we'll have a load of inexperienced older drivers then? Even if the limit was raised to mid-20's, its the experience on the road that matters, not your age.
  • Old G.
    It may have been a very long time ago but I remember moving from pushbike to four wheels and being impressed at getting up to 30 mph without the aid of a long hill and minus the puffing and panting and getting sweaty. I was off after that. Fear was no passenger in my vehicle. Adventure was my bread, excitement was my butter and danger? Well that was just like strawberry jam to top it all off.
  • roger
    Young people are four times more likely to die in a road accident than as a result of drink or drugs. Young people aren't taking enough drugs then or its a fucking stupid comparison.
  • leeisgod
    Another well written article, surely the curfew would be 10pm too 5am.
  • jokester2
    Yet another ridiculous badly thought out plan from the government. If they weren't such muppets they would realise that the vast majority of people that have just passed their test have never driven in hazardous conditions or on motorways. Even more importantly, they have absolutely no idea how to control a skid or a spin. Part of the tuition & test should involve a skid-pan course that teaches you how to control the car when something like this happens.
  • Kevin
    Moving it to 18 is bad but night curfew is a good idea.
  • Big M.
    I think motorway lessons should be a must. A curfew is a fucking stupid idea. It could stop young drivers from working night shifts and what constitutes 'young' anyway? At 18 you can get shot at in a foreign war, or even become a PC and arrest people. Just don't try and drive the armored vehicle or patrol car at night.
  • Captain.Cretin
    Compulsory in-car cameras. It is amazing to see how many "yoofs" slow down and start to behave when they see the camera in my car watching them. Oh, and an on-line video posting system that the rozzers HAVE to act on.
  • Learner D.
    i think its an absolute stupid idea! what about the young 17 year olds like me that have already been driving for a few months and enjoying learning! And looking forward to pass to get a job go out make more of a life for yourself but with harmless fun what are they going to say to the one's that have been learning for months oh sorry you cant drive now you'll have to wait till you're 18 well the drop dumb people dont realise the longer we have off the road will also drop our experiance fron the time we have missed off the road. I think it's selfish to the genuine people and will be fuming ifthis rule comes in to place!
  • Alexis
    Vauxhall Novas? Even the twattiest teenager doesn't rag round in a car that was last sold in 1992.
  • Passed d.
    And being the typical government, wanting you to do more to pass but they won't be paying shit for it. This is assuming their hazard perception tests aren't bringing them enough revenue as it is.
  • Tim
    Two questions: 1) how are the "practice hours" during this "learner stage" validated? Presumably, they'll need to be validated by a DSA registered instructor. And since they won't want to take a pay cut compared to what they get teaching unlicensed drivers, they'll probably be charged at £20/hour. 2) what happens if the driver, having passed his test and been granted a full driving license, then fails to achieve his required 'practice hours'? Is his license revoked? There is plenty that could be done to make new drivers safer. For example, an age-linked power restriction, with a requirement to retake your test if you want to move up to a more powerful car when you reach the appropriate age to do so. And for anyone thinking that's also a stupid idea, I agree, but it's exactly what motorcyclists already have to do.
  • shakesheadsadly
    Night driving and motorway driving should absolutely be part of the test. I'd have supported that even before I took the test. Also, the question "Have you ever watched The fast and the Furious should be asked. With a yes answer not only resulting in a lifetime ban from driving, but also immediate sterilization. And possibly a darn good slap too.
  • Tim
    Presumably shakesheadsadly, you have seen fast & furious in order to be able to pass such a judgment. I take it you've already handed in your license?
  • james d.
    How could motorway driving be part of the test if you live say in the north of scotland.
  • Tits M.
    I think track day, skid pan, night driving etc should all be part of the test too. Far too many twats who can't drive in snow or rain, or pootle around corners. If every driver was confident at travelling at the speed limit, the traffic would flow better, less accidents and generally everyone in a better mood.
  • You
    "Young people are four times more likely to die in a road accident than as a result of drink or drugs." British Teenagers are over four times more likely to die in a road accident than as a reult of getting shot in Somalia. That means Somalia must be really safe!! To Thomas Cook!!

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