Bid to reduce road accident rates

To bring down high death and serious injury rates among young motorists, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) has said the learning period for the driving test should be a minimum of one year.

According to a study of 2,500 people commissioned by the ABI, as many as 75% think the measure would prove effective in reducing young driver accidents.

Nick Starling, the ABI's director of General Insurance and Health, said: "Introducing a longer and more structured learning period may frustrate some youngsters, eager to get behind the wheel. But better this, than they become another tragic statistic."

Although research indicated a decrease in the overall figure of road casualties, more young motorists are becoming victims of road accidents now than earlier.

At least 10 young drivers or their passengers are killed or seriously injured on the roads each day, raising the number of car insurance claims from them.

Mr Starling added: "Too many young drivers are still killed or seriously injured on our roads. A car is a potential lethal weapon, and we must provide more help to young motorists to better deal with the dangers of driving. A minimum one year learning period, and young driver passenger restrictions, would help ensure that today's young drivers become tomorrow's safer motorists."

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