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Talks Begin to Implement Restricted Driving Licences for Young Drivers

Back in July, Book Theory Test Today published this blog. It would appear that the day of reckoning has now arrived as talks open about introducing restricted licences for young drivers. Book Theory Test Today looks at the implications.   

The Book Theory Test Today blogger says: “What began as an idea quickly caused speculation. Speculation has now turned into the serious possibility of a graduated licensing system being introduced. The future of young drivers now looks set to change as they face more hurdles after passing a theory test and practical exam.”


It has been announced that a north road safety campaigner will hold discussions with the UK Government’s junior transport minister to look at introducing a graduated licensing system. The purpose of the system is to restrict the privileges of young drivers until they can prove that they are a fully competent road user.

Highland MSP, David Stewart, thinks that a graduated licence system can significantly reduce accident numbers involving drivers who have recently passed a theory test and practical exam.

Mr Stewart is now due to meet with Robert Goodwill in Westminster, a meeting that will take place on December 10th.

The Book Theory Test Today blogger says: “At this meeting, it’s understood that Mr Stewart will propose the introduction of a graduated licence scheme in Scotland on a trial basis. He plans to implement a 12 month learner phase for drivers aged 17, who will be required to record 100 hours of daytime driving and 20 hours of night driving.”

Once a driver has turned 18, and successfully completed a theory test, they will be issued with a probationary licence.

This phase would involve a driver having to display ‘P’ plates, with a restriction on night time driving, which would require the presence of a passenger aged 25 before a driver can drive their vehicle. A zero tolerance to drink driving will also be enforced.

It’s not until a driver has held a probationary licence for 12 months that they will be issued with a full, UK driving licence.

Inexperienced Young Drivers

In a statement from Mr Stewart he had this to say: “For nearly five years now, I and my partners in the North of Scotland Driver Awareness Team, have campaigned to have a form of graduated licence introduced as a pilot in Scotland. We all know now that young and new drivers have come to be over represented in road collisions by the fact that they are both over confident and inexperienced.”

He added: “Our esteemed colleague, Dr Sarah Jones from Cardiff University, has looked at 10 years of statistics and can prove that up to 22 lives per year could be saved in Scotland alone and up to £80 million to the Scottish economy.

It’s a ‘no brainer’ as far as we are concerned and I will be pushing the Minister to follow our proposals which have recently been mirrored in a Department of Transport document relating to novice drivers.”

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