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People should resit driving tests to improve safety

Published 29/05/2015

Unlike Steven Agnew, the Green Party MLA, I am not concerned that more than 50% of testees are failing their driving test for cars (News, May 22).

Rather, I am thankful that potentially unfit drivers are kept off our roads, which increasingly seem to resemble the Wacky Races cartoon from my childhood.

Every day I witness careless and potentially dangerous drivers, who seem to think that their importance permits them to breach the Highway Code, for example:

  • Going through green lights and blocking junctions, thus disrupting the traffic flow in other directions when lights change (Rule 152).
  • Overtaking a queue of cars at a roundabout using the right turn only lane, to then go straight ahead, forcing other vehicles on the roundabout to brake (Rule 160).
  • Undertake a queue of cars only to use their right indicator and force their way into the queue (Rule 129).
  • Cross the central line, to avoid parked cars, and force oncoming traffic to brake or enter active bus lanes (Rule 106).

I challenge anyone to attempt to keep a safe stopping distance on the motorway in rush hour without some idiot pulling in five feet from your front bumper and forcing you to slow down.

Perhaps what we need is, rather than automatically renewing driving licences every 10 years, there is a requirement to resit and pass your test before it is renewed.

Together with replacing fines/penalty points with impounding vehicles (say, one week per 1mph over the speed limit or one month per penalty point), this will greatly improve the safety of our roads and reduce the number of road deaths each year.

MOTORIST

Belfast

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