Learner Drivers

The mooted new restrictions on learner drivers are excessive. A minimum of 20 hours from an approved trainer is unnecessary and expensive. It assumes that most people are incoordinated and have poor spacial appreciation. Special interest advocates from Driving Schools only feed the impression of puffing up your own interests and the honey pot ?700 cost of the tuition.

The appropriate question to be asked now is : – is the Road Safety Strategy working – answer yes! Figures from Paul Melia in the Irish Independent quoted road deaths in the 1970 varied from 525 in the best year to 640 in the worst. In 2001, 411 were killed and in 2009 the figure was 240.

Melia writes that the Road Safety Authority says that motorists are
inexperienced until they have driven 100,000 km in all weathers and traffic conditions. How is that conclusion arrived at and using what data base? That is an average of 7 years on the roads before being considered competent. What a load of tush. Ever heard of slow down when in doubt?

It seems to me that the most important changes should be the restriction of under 25s to cars of 1200 ccs or less, motor bikes of 400 ccs or less. The imposition of sensible speed limits so that enforcement is not farcical. Boy racers in Dublin and Donegal should be targeted. And speeding by under 25s should attract two extra penalty points.

Meanwhile legislators should revisit this latest kite.