A virtual reality theory test could be introduced as part of learner driver training to help young motorists develop their hazard perception skills. Learner drivers potentially face having to wear headsets or sitting in driving simulators to improve their road skills before earning a driving licence. Here’s what we know…
The virtual reality theory test will be introduced in an effort to improve the road skills of young drivers and reduce the risk of road fatalities and serious injuries. Jesse Norman, the UK Transport Minister, welcomed the hi-tech approach saying that it can ‘help learner drivers to enhance their hazard perception skills ahead of taking a practical driving test.’
The Transport Minister added: “Virtual reality road safety awareness films are likely to be helpful in driver education. They promise to bring an added spatial dimension to the experience and can be very engaging when used well.”
Young Drivers and Road Accidents
Government figures show that less than 2 percent of 17 – 19 year-olds have a full, UK driving licence, but they’re responsible for 9 percent of serious and fatal crashes on Britain’s roads. Meanwhile, one in four 18 – 24 year-olds will crash their vehicle within two years of passing their practical driving test.
Digital Programme executive at the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), Alex Fiddes, said: “Our priority is to help everyone through a lifetime of safe driving. It’s important candidates can demonstrate that they have a good knowledge of the rules of the road and the theory behind safe driving.”
He added: “Road safety education is vitally important and we are always exploring the potential of developing driver training and testing with emerging technologies.”
Virtual Theory Test Welcomed
Director of campaigns at road safety charity Brake, Joshua Harris, welcomed the idea of a virtual reality theory test. He said: “Novice drivers are involved in a huge proportion of crashes on our roads and more must be done to improve their safety.”
He added: “Strong hazard perception is vital to driver safety and we welcome innovative approaches, such as the use of VR.”
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