Fleet News

Government wants to see rise in driver training involvement

The Government says it supports driver training and wants to see more employees who have to drive as part of their job getting involved.

In order to increase the number of people being trained, road safety minister Mike Penning told guests at the annual IAM lunch that there was an opportunity for the Government to work with the Institute.

He said that he recognised the importance of targeting at-work drivers with education, referring to statistics that one in three accidents on the road involve people driving for work.

But he also emphasised a desire to ensure younger drivers were better qualified to deal with situations they encounter on the roads after passing their driving tests.

He said that for many people learning to drive was just“learning to pass a test” and agreed with recent IAM calls to introduce compulsory post-test training.

Penning explained that too many tests take place in areas where learner drivers don’t have the opportunity to drive on rural roads, where the rate of serious accidents is higher than on other roads.

Although he told guests he did not support the installation of speed cameras for revenue raising purposes, he believes they are valuable tools in improving safety when installed near accident blackspots.

“We have said to road safety partnerships we will not ring-fence money for cameras. It doesn’t mean we don’t think they work,” he said.

“We need to look at where the cameras would work before installing them.”

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  • Edward Handley - 22/12/2010 20:32

    I would be delighted by this article if I believed the Government really did want to support additional training for at work drivers, but so far I have seen no evidence of this. LGV and PCV drivers have to do 35 hours Driver's CPC refresher training every 5 years and there was a consultation on a proposal that this should include at least one day of actual in cab driver training. After the consultation the Government, this one not the last lot, decided not to proceed with the proposal! As for young drivers - the introduction of the Driver's CPC lowered the minimum age for holding a vocational licence to 18 on the basis that young drivers would get more treaining. How much more do they actually get? Amazingly none - the practical test has been made slightly longer, c 10 minutes, plus an off road vehicle safety test. So, forgive me if I take this lunchtime announcement with a little pinch of salt, but it strikes me as yet another insubstantial sop to safety and the training industry.

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