Highlands & Islands MSP, Shadow Transport Minister and road safety campaigner, David Stewart, has received a further boost to his campaign to have a form of Graduated Driving Licence introduced as a pilot in Scotland, by comments made yesterday (22/7/15) by the Shadow Secretary of State for Transport, Michael Dugher MP.
David Stewart recently met with key stakeholders on a visit to London and produced a blueprint of what he sees as the best way forward in addressing road safety issues with in particular, the introduction of a Graduated Driving Licence.
Speaking about David Stewart’s proposals, Michael Dugher MP said “David Stewart has been a great campaigner on road safety issues for many years and has now come forward with a detailed proposal for a type of Graduated Driving Licence and the promotion of telematics.
“I think this is a very interesting proposal and warrants further consideration and debate.
” I am particularly impressed with how David Stewart has been involving young people in formulating his ideas.
“The Government has continued to kick action on young driver safety into the long grass.
“Things are getting worse and it’s now time for Ministers to act, to take this issue seriously and to take a constructive and collaborative approach to how we can improve road safety.”
Speaking today David Stewart said, “ I am of course delighted that on my recent visit to London I secured the opportunity to meet some key individuals in the field of transport and road safety and it was particularly pleasing to receive the whole hearted support of the Shadow Secretary of State for Transport, Michael Dugher for my proposals.
“We know for a fact that young novice drivers are at a disproportionately high risk of being involved in a road accident in the first 1000 miles after they pass the driving test.
“We need to find ways to help them build up their experience safely. Research suggests some form of Graduated Driving Licence could save lives.
“It is a fact that in Scotland alone a form of Graduated Licence could save up to 22 lives and £80 million to the Scottish economy.
“Graduated Licence Schemes have been introduced in many countries across the world and they are proven and evidenced to reduce fatalities amongst young and novice drivers.
“What I am in fact proposing is nothing to do with ageism or restricted the movement of our young people.
“First of all I want to allow our young people the freedom to be mobile on our roads, but afford them as much safety and protection as possible through education, support and limited regulation.
“By limited regulation I mean the following three measures:
* Between the ages of 17 and 18 years they can learn to drive and hopefully pass successfully, but thereafter they need to display ‘P’ plate for 12 months after they pass their test.
* There is no restriction on when they can drive, but they cannot carry passengers under 25 for this 12 month period, unless they are accompanied by a qualified driver 25 years and older.
* There should be as near zero an alcohol limit as possible.
“I also propose promotion of the use of telematics.
“These can help reduce driver risk and increase safe driving.
“Within this rapidly developing field, products and services including various forms of telematics, but primarily telematics insurance products are being developed.
“Telematics systems record key data on driving behaviour and have been found to have a positive effect on high-risk groups such as teenagers and young males”.