Part 3 of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill which refers to Learner and New Drivers, proposes to introduce a mandatory learning period during which time a Programme of Training will be followed and evidenced via a logbook. This will provide a more structured approach to learning to drive and will guide the learner through the skills and experience required to become a safe driver.
The learning period will also effectively raise the full licensing age. Research suggests any rise in age will have a positive impact on reducing road collisions. The Bill also proposes that new drivers under the age of 24 will be restricted from carrying more than one passenger who is aged 14 to 20 for the first 6 months post test. Following an amendment at Consideration Stage, this restriction will apply only between the hours of 10pm and 6am.
The Graduated Driving Licence proposals in the Bill aim to strike a balance between improving road safety outcomes and retaining mobility for young people.