DERBYSHIRE: Government committed to ‘improving safety’

Andy Fox and Glen Wardale from Red and Black Driving Academy.
Andy Fox and Glen Wardale from Red and Black Driving Academy.
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A driving instructor has questioned plans which could see teenagers being forced to wait until they are 19 before they can become fully-qualified drivers.

A Government report has recommended the introduction of a 12-month learner period for 17-year-olds before they can take their test – followed by a 12-month probationary period so they become fully qualified.

Under the controversial proposals, new drivers would face a year-long curfew between 10pm and 5am – unless they were carrying a passenger over the age of 30.

But instructor Glen Wardale, of the Chesterfield-based Red and Black Driving Academy, criticised the plans.

He said: “I think they’re victimising youngsters. The most important thing is having a good attitude on the road – not your age. I don’t think there should be a night-time curfew either – what if a young person needs to drive to their job in the early hours of the morning?”

On the Derbyshire Times’ Facebook page, Nikola Evans said: “This is a good idea which may cut our teenage fatality rate and reduce accidents.” Barry Dyke said: “Not all young people drive like idiots. A large number of non-teens drive and speed like mad men.” Geoff Hopwood said: “I drive for a living and I have to say I have more problems with older drivers than young drivers.” Steve Drew said: “I think that everyone who holds a driving licence should have a re-test every few years to prove they’re still up to it.”

On Twitter, Aileen Knowles said: “Maybe if driving lessons taught how to drive not just how to pass the test this wouldn’t be necessary.”