Accident risk for young drivers
Young drivers in the UK are most at risk of crashing in the first few weeks after passing their test, according to an AA/Populus survey.
Of drivers who have had an accident, 23 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds crashed within six months of passing their test.
The survey, of more than 14,000 drivers who have had a car crash, formed the basis of a report from the AA Charitable Trust and the Make Roads Safe campaign.
Entitled Young Drivers At Risk, the report was launched today by former motor racing champion Nigel Mansell.
The survey showed:
• Of those who had an accident, 26 per cent crashed within two years of gaining their licence;
• One third of 18 to 24-year-olds had been involved in an accident when driving;
• 28 per cent crashed by the time they were 21;
• First crashes were most likely to happen in the daytime, with only 13 per cent occurring at night;
• Most people had their first accident without passengers in the car, while bad weather was a factor in 15 per cent of first accidents;
• 47 per cent had their first crash on a single carriageway or in a rural area, while five per cent of drivers had their first crash on a motorbike.
Mansell, a member of the Commission for Global Road Safety, said: “I became a world champion by driving fast. I love cars and racing. But I know the place for speed is on a racetrack, not on the road.
“While road deaths among the young remain a serious problem here in the UK, in many parts of the world they have become nothing less than a crisis out of control. Someone is being killed or maimed every six seconds.
“It is an epidemic that is set to double within the next few years unless we take action.
“This is a vitally important issue which doesn’t get enough attention. Too many of our young people are still being killed or injured on the roads. These are preventable tragedies.”
The report calls for young drivers to be given more opportunities to drive in a safe, off-road environment before they turn 17. Almost three-quarters (73 per cent) of UK motorists believe this would make young drivers safer.