News 23 April 2023

Young drivers could be banned from giving friends a lift under new legislation

23 April 2023

In a bid to cut down the number of car crashes, the government are considering banning newly-qualified young drivers from giving their friends a lift.

The plans include the introduction of a ‘graduated driving licence’ which would ban new motorists under the age of 25 from having young passengers in their car in the first year or six months after passing their test.

The change to the Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act will be considered by Roads Minister Richard Holden at a meeting on May 6.

Young drivers make up only six percent of total licence holders in the UK but they account for over one in five fatal and serious crashes.

Among the supporters of the change in law is Sharron Huddleston, 52, from Cumbria who lost her 18-year-old daughter Caitlin who was killed in a car crash while taking a lift from a friend who passed her driving test in four months beforehand.

A meeting to discuss the law change will take place in May [Image: photographyfirm via Shutterstock]

Sharron told the Sunday Times: “It has left a huge, gaping hole in our family.

“Every Christmas, every birthday, it is just devastating.”

“There is nothing I can do to bring Caitlin back but I am determined, in her memory, to ensure that no other family goes through the pain and agony that we go through every day.”

Edmund King, director of the AA Trust, said: “Young drivers are not just a risk to themselves. In 2021, 926 people were killed or seriously injured in crashes involving at least one young driver. These heartbreaking crashes have profound consequences.

“Limiting young drivers’ rights to carry other young people as passengers for a period of time immediately after passing their test is a pragmatic move that should save lives. As new drivers gain more ‘real life’ experience, their risk of crashing reduces.”

[Image: Alexandru Nika via Shutterstock]