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Hertfordshire County Council
 

Learn 2 Live

A guide to safe driving for young drivers, passengers and their parents/carers

 

Statistics suggest young drivers and motorcycle riders are more likely to crash and possibly die or injure themselves, their passengers and other road users than any other age group. This may be down to inexperience, an over-confidence in driving/riding ability and an inability to perceive and respond to emerging hazards.

However, there are some easy ways to reduce both the risk and the costs...

 

Advice for young drivers/ riders and passengers

 

Have a ‘black box’ fitted in your car

Telematics, often called a black box, can be beneficial as a safety measure as they monitor how a car is driven. This encourages safer driving behaviours such as:

  • keeping within the speed limit
  • not driving too late at night
  • gentle acceleration, braking and cornering.

 

What are the benefits?

Data is collected on how the car is driven and the results are fed back to the driver - good driving is usually rewarded with reduced premiums.

 

Have further training once you've passed your driving test

PassPlus training gives you additional driving experience with lessons from an advanced driving instructor. You can practice scenarios that are not included in the driving test such as driving on a motorway and night driving.

Interactive workshop on driving for work – young people who have jobs as drivers face more risks on the road because of their inexperience on the road.

Book on a Biker Down course - Would you know what to do if you were first on the scene of a collision with a motorcyclist? Email us to express your interest in the course.

What are the benefits?

Some insurance companies offer lower insurance premiums for new drivers who have completed Pass Plus course.

 

 

Insurance

Insurance is expensive for young drivers but installing a black box and having PassPlus training are ways to reduce the cost. It is worth shopping around too, but do not just go for the lowest price, look at what each insurance offers. It may be worth paying a little more for a small premium in the event of a claim.

 

 

Did you know?

Motorways are the safest roads to drive on. Young drivers are more likely to have a serious crash on a rural road. However, young riders are more likely to be involved in a serious collision on urban roads.

 

 

Did you know? 

The licences of young drivers will be revoked if they receive 6 or more points within two years of passing their test. For instance, the penalty for using a mobile phone whilst driving is now 6 points and £200.

 

Risks out on the road

 

Distractions, including handheld mobile phones, other electronic gadgets, playing loud music and passenger distraction

Drivers who use a mobile phone, whether hand-held or hands-free, are four times more likely to crash, injuring or killing themselves and other people. 

 

 

 

Travelling too fast for the driver's experience and the road condition, and risky manoeuvres such as overtaking and going through red lights 

The faster you drive/ride the longer it takes to stop, and the greater the forces involved in a collision. Therefore, a collision at high speed is most likely to result in people being killed or seriously injured.

Top 10 tips for Staying Within the Speed Limit

 

Drink and drug driving/riding

This affects driving by:

  • Slowing reaction time
  • Slowing cognitive function and affecting judgement
  • Increasing risk-taking behaviour

 

Not wearing a seat belt

Always wear a seatbelt. It’s the law that all occupants must wear one and not complying can be fatal, even at low speeds. If you ride a moped/ scooter, always wear protective gear.

 

Advice for parents and carers 

 

As parents and carers there are some practical things you can do to help keep young people safer when driving, riding or travelling as a passenger.

 

  • If you are a driver, spend as much time as possible in the car with a learner or a newly qualified driver, practice and experience is invaluable.
  • How you drive and deal with situations will be copied by young people – be the best example you can be.

 

 

Talk about the risks associated with driving

It is important to help young people understand risks including peer pressure, tiredness, not wearing seat belts or being distracted. Consider setting restrictions on driving late at night as this is when young driver casualty rates rise.

 

Work out coping strategies in advance to deal with tricky situations including:

  1. Being offered a lift by a friend who has been drinking or taking drugs. As a parent or carer, be contactable or talk about alternative ways of how your young person can get themselves and friends home safely such as booking a taxi.
  2. Speaking up if concerned about behaviours such as friends not wearing seatbelts or speeding.
  3. Travelling in poor road conditions. Drivers should slow down in the rain when the roads are wet and when it is icy and foggy. Identifying where the car’s fog lights are would be beneficial.

 

A parent/carer – young driver agreement could be agreed either in a verbal or written form and tailored to the individual.

A parent/carer could agree to:

  • Ensure the vehicle is well maintained, taxed and insured
  • Arrange alternative transport so that young people do not have to drive home late at night

A young driver could agree to:

  • Not drive late at night, such as midnight and 6am
  • Agree a maximum number of passengers to be carried
  • Agree to stick to a zero alcohol and drug limit when driving
  • Not use a mobile phone or other electronic gadgets while driving
  • Keep to the speed limit
  • Wear seatbelts and not go anywhere until all passengers are belted up
  • wear protective gear as a scooter/moped rider

 

View an example parent/carer young driver agreement (PDF 785kb) Opening a new window on road safety.

 

Choosing a driving instructor

This can be a difficult decision but do check them out and do not just go for the best deal. Pick someone who comes recommended and you feel would work well with your young person.

Make sure the instructor is an Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) whose car should display a green octagonal badge. Please note that Potential Driving Instructors (PDIs) display pink triangle badges.

Some driving instructors know about the "The Honest Truth" project, which involves them talking about road safety and safer driving behaviours. Ask them if they are part of this project.

 

Buying and maintaining a car

Get a HPI vehicle history check www.hpicheck.co.uk

Check the car’s MoT history www.gov.uk/check-mot-history

Check the bodywork, brakes and tyres along with all the electrics. Check the vehicle and make sure it is safe to drive.

It can be a good idea to learn the fundamentals of maintenance – from where to put the oil in to pumping up the tyres to the right level.

 

 

Learn 2 Live is a programme to educate young people about the dangers of being drivers/riders and passengers on our roads.

The Hertfordshire Road Safety Partnership runs events in Hertfordshire venues during the academic year. It is acclaimed by attendees and has been verified as positively changing the attitudes of young drivers/riders, pre-drivers and passengers.

The aim is for all Year 12 students in Hertfordshire to experience this event.

Learn 2 Live is an event that takes students through the consequences of their actions out and about on the road as drivers/riders and as passengers. A series of speakers talk about their experiences on the roads of Hertfordshire. The speakers include someone from each of the emergency services, a representative from Trading Standards and a victim and/or a family member of someone involved in a road traffic collision, which has been life-changing.

 

 

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