Passing your driving test is a monumental moment in your life. After forty-five driving lessons; nearly one year of meticulously learning every mirror glance necessary; nearly £1,100 worth of lessons and tests; and a theory test and a practical driving test that caused severe bouts of consternation, you finally have your driving licence.
So what is next?
What happens when you finish fist-pumping in your local driving test centre and begin to drive to the supermarket on a daily basis?
What happens when your passenger does not have a clutch and a brake at their feet just in case you make a mistake?
Below is a list of problems new driver face during their first official year on the roads.
According to a recent National Travel Survey conducted by the United Kingdom’s Department of Transport, accentuates the fact that it is now more financially burdensome to get on the road than ever.
In the UK, the number of seventeen to twenty year-olds who currently have a full driving licence has dropped from 43% of the populace to just under 31%.
A key reason for this drastic fall in the number of seventeen to twenty year-olds with driving licences, is undoubtedly due to the ludicrous price of car insurance.
Although cheap automotive insurance in the UK and the United States of America can be found, since 1995, first year drivers in the United Kingdom have seen the price of car insurance rise a staggering 170%.
A seventeen year-old is now – quite ridiculously – expected to pay an average of £2,232 for his/her first year on the old, while the average first year driver is expected to pay around £1,000 more in their first year driving than any other motorist on the road.
In Northern Ireland, during the twelve-month period after one passes their driving test and acquires their full licence, new drivers are prohibited from driving above the speed of 45 miles per hour.
Although this is not a problem in urban areas – where speed limits typically range between 30 miles per hour and 40 miles per hour – on motorways and dual carriageways, the enforcement of this rule is extremely dangerous.
Despite having a full licence, new drivers are acknowledged as “restricted” drivers and are therefore forced to drive a full 25 miles per hour slower than every other vehicle on a motorway.
This rule leads to other drivers being forced to overtake drivers with “R” plates on their windscreen at inopportune moments, and also causes congestion and traffic build-up on Northern Irish motorways.
According to a study conducted by Autocar magazine, concluded that one in every five drivers are involved in a car crash in their first year on the road.
One in four seventeen to twenty-four year-olds, are also said to crash their car during their first year on the road. These crashes are said to be usually due to a lack of care taken on the roads by new drivers.
So ensure that you do not take liberties while overtaking, turning a corner etc. in order to avoid being a part of the 20% of people who crash as first-year drivers.’