Plans to let learner drivers have motorway driving lessons
Monday, 2nd January, 2017
At the moment, you can only have driving lessons on motorways after you’ve passed your driving test.
Some newly-qualified drivers take lessons through the voluntary Pass Plus scheme.
However, Learner drivers will be allowed on to motorways for the first time, if new government plans are approved.
Under the new plans, learner drivers would need to be:
- accompanied by an approved driving instructor
- driving a car fitted with dual controls
It would be up to the driving instructor to decide when the learner driver is competent enough to have a motorway lesson.
Any change to the law would be well-publicised before coming into effect. Until then, it’s still illegal for a learner driver to drive on a motorway.
The Department for Transport is also asking for views on whether:
- the current driving instructor training and testing system gives instructors the skills they need to provide motorway lessons to learner drivers
- specially-adapted vehicles must be fitted with dual controls if they’re used for motorway lessons
- L plate roofboxes on cars must be removed before a motorway lesson
Have your say on the proposals by 17th February 2017.
Northern Ireland and Scotland is responsible for its own road traffic legislation, including driver and vehicle testing, road safety policy and vehicle standards.
The plans would only effect Learner Drivers in England and Wales.
The Times reported that the government was also considering plans to introduce a mandatory minimum learning period for learner drivers, which could see them being made to spend up to 120 hours behind the wheel before taking their test.
A spokesman for the DfT said it was looking into a range of measures to improve safety for new drivers, including a trial of targets for the number of hours spent learning, but there were no current plans to introduce a minimum figure.