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shermarama From: shermarama Date: November 18th, 2010 01:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think there is a specific problem with younger drivers, in that the 17-20 age group are the ones it costs a bomb to get insurance for because they're always bloody crashing, and governments always seem to be perplexed by this and constantly try and introduce new bits of legislation to do something about it, regardless of whether the thing they do is any use or not. There's probably alcohol involved in a certain number of accidents involving 17-20 year olds, so they say hey, let's ban it, and the only way I can see that leading to improved figures is because a certain number of young drivers who have had something to drink but not enough to actually affect their concentration will get caught out and taken off the road, while the younger drivers who get trollied and crash because they're young and think they're bulletproof will still get trollied and crash because they're young and think they're bulletproof. This is surely provable because it's not a limit being proposed for new drivers; why should someone who's 24 and just got their licence be magically more competent on the roads than a 17 year old? And yet they are; the insurance costs a lot less. So the logical thing to do is just raise the age people can get a driving licence at, but then there are bits of the UK where a car is the key to being able to get to work, so that really wouldn't help with youth unemployment, or with bringing about the sort of maturity and responsibility that leads to 24 year olds being much less likely to crash their car than 17 year olds...
livredor From: livredor Date: November 18th, 2010 04:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think they've more or less sorted this in Australia, by setting a period of 1 probationary year between passing the driving test and getting a full licence. During this year you have a blood alcohol limit of zero, and I think you're not allowed on highways, and you have to take some advanced driving courses to convert your probational licence to a real one. That deals with people getting the right to drink at the same time they get their licence, and it helps to create a culture where newly qualified 18-year-olds are generally more rather than less cautious, and the compulsory advanced driver education really helps to make up for the lack of experience.

I like that a lot better than just trying to price teenagers out of driving. It's fairer, and apart from anything else the most reckless drivers are the rich kids who just blithely assume that Daddy will buy them a new car or pay for bail if anything goes wrong.
pjc50 From: pjc50 Date: November 18th, 2010 04:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Interesting about Australia, seems to be an even safer country than the UK. Although it's also a lot emptier.

Bail is a non-issue in the UK. I'm wondering if it's the rich kids or the uninsured or stolen causing more accidents; can't find any stats immediatly though.
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