Learner Drivers on Motorways

Do you remember when you learned to drive? It can be a harrowing process – watching the road, learning how a particular car handles and all while taking instruction from someone. At present, driving lessons can only occur off motorways, ostensibly as a safety precaution for other drivers.

However, collision data shows that drivers who recently gained their license are up to eight times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident on British roads than drivers from other demographics. Young drivers – particularly young men – are overrepresented when it comes to collisions at speed, even on straight roads.

Therefore, legislation has been introduced, effective as of the 4th of June, permitting driving lessons to take place on motorways, so that more young drivers can get a feel for driving on them ahead of receiving their license. Hopes are, with more experience of high-speed driving, the numbers of those killed and injured will decrease.

There are still some restrictions, however. Lessons taking place on motorways must be in cars with dual-controls, and lessons can only take place with approved driving instructors – no lessons from Mum or Dad! Learner motorcyclists will still be barred from learning on motorways (not much room for an instructor there) and trainee driving instructors will not be able to take their students on the motorway. As always L-Plates must be prominently displayed on the bar across the top of the car, or prominently displayed on both front and rear windows.

We are interested to hear what our Regtransfers readers and customers think of the move. Do you think it will result in safer driving for all, or do you feel that more learner drivers sharing the motorway with you is a recipe for more accidents and delays?

We’ll be running a poll about this topic on our social media channels leading up to the 4th of June, and will present the results shortly after. We will also be following the data published by the government over the coming year to evaluate what, if any, effect the move has had – stay tuned!

The specifications for number plates for motorcycles and motor tricycles are different from those for cars. See our guide to number plate rules for motorbikes, trikes and quads.

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