Young drivers

Title: Young Novice Driver Collision Types

Organisation: Iam RoadSmart & TRL
Date uploaded: 24th January 2018
Date published/launched: December 1999

This report concludes that young drivers need to learn more quickly how to avoid crashes with vulnerable road users.

Co-published by IAM RoadSmart and TRL, the report finds that young drivers learn 'much quicker than expected’ how to avoid single vehicle loss of control collisions.

However, they are slower to learn how to deal with vulnerable road users, be safe on the motorway and safely complete low speed manoeuvres. The authors say this could be
‘indicative of poor hazard perception skills’ and describe the findings as surprising given that ‘the classic young driver crash usually involves going too fast on a country road’.

The report set out to identify which aspects of driving are learned quickest and which take more time - on the basis that targeting the skills that newly qualified young drivers ‘struggle to take in’ could bring significant road safety benefits for this group.

The report makes a number of recommendations to improve new driver training, particularly with regard to hazard perception, vulnerable road users and other vehicles.

It also underlines the ‘critical importance’ of gaining driving experience in a wide variety of traffic situations - pointing to research which suggests an 17-year-old driver can expect their risk of being involved in a crash to reduce by 36% as a result of driving experience, but only by 6% owing to ageing and maturity.

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