In a bid to increase road safety across the United Kingdom, the Government recently enforced new laws that allow learner drivers to drive on motorways in England, Scotland and Wales.
The change to the law came to ensure that more drivers are aware of how to use the motorway safely, as oppose to venturing onto the carriageway for the first time by themselves with no experience or prior knowledge. Until the change, the only way to receive driving lessons on the motorway was to undertake a voluntary Pass Plus scheme after attaining a driving license.
To ensure that the lessons are undertaken in the safest manner possible, strict criteria have been created and all must be adhered to before a student is allowed on the motorway.
These criteria state that a learner is only allowed to drive on the motorway when they are driving a vehicle that is equipped with dual controls and they are accompanied by an approved driving instructor.
These rules will help to ensure that learner drivers do not venture onto the motorway whilst taking private lessons with someone that is not a trained driving instructor or is a trainee driving instructor.
Despite the change, motorway driving is not being introduced as part of the driving test, with all motorway lessons being a voluntary addition to a student’s lesson plan. Before embarking on motorway lessons, it will be up to the driving instructor to decide whether a student is competent enough to undertake them.
Whilst many have greeted the news with skepticism, both the Government and the RAC have stressed that introducing learner drivers to the motorway in a supportive environment, alongside a qualified instructor, is much safer than allowing them to make their motorway debut on their own or with friends.
What do you think of the new law – is it good that learner drivers will get to have their first experience with an instructor or should it remain something that only happens after a student has passed their driving test? We’d like to hear your thoughts on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.