Sir, – As from August 1st a new regulation requires a novice driver who has just passed the driving test to display an “N” plate. Nothing more.
Speed is acknowledged to be the major contributor to road traffic accidents, yet there is no requirement imposed on the novice driver as to a personal maximum speed limit. The Road Safety Authority regards 100,000km driven to be the necessary level for full driver experience, yet imposes no personal restriction on a novice suddently free from the company and control of a mature qualified driver. Yet that new driver ranks as a major accident risk.
A restriction to a moderate speed limit for all “N” plate drivers for a period of at least a year would seem to be a prime necessity. Such an arrangement used be in operation in Northern Ireland some years back, and resulted in a significant reduction in road traffic accidents. Why hasn’t this been done here? – Yours, etc,