Government proposes ban on night driving for new drivers

Graduated licensing is used in the US and Australia

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Novice drivers could be banned from getting behind the wheel at night under a new scheme proposed by the Department for Transport.

Ministers are considering introducing a graduated licence system for new drivers in England, after figures showed one in five are involved in an accident during their first year on the road.

As well as the restrictions on night driving, newly-qualified motorists could also face restrictions on the age of passengers riding with them in the car.

The DfT did not reveal how long the measures would be in place for after someone had passed their driving test.

Under current rules, new drivers can have their licenses revoked if they accumulate six penalty points within their first two years on the road, but no other restrictions are in place.

Graduated licensing systems already operate in several parts of the world, including the US, Australia and Sweden. 

They have been rejected in the UK in the past over concerns they could restrict young people’s access to education and employment.

Road Safety minister Michael Ellis said: "We have some of the safest roads in the world but we are always looking at ways to make them safer.

"Getting a driving licence is exciting for young people, but it can also be daunting as you're allowed to drive on your own for the first time.

"We want to explore in greater detail how graduated driver licensing, or aspects of it, can help new drivers to stay safe and reduce the number of people killed or injured on our roads."

The DfT will publish its Road Safety Action Plan on Friday.

Any potential changes included in the plan will be put under consultation before being introduced.

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