49% Of Brits Want Older Drivers Banned From The Roads

Older Drivers

49% Of Brits Want Older Drivers Banned From The Roads

New survey reveals 49% of Brits want older drivers banned from the roads completely.

Main findings

CarTakeBack.com and YouGov survey found the following:

● A huge 69% think older drivers should have to retake their driving test, starting at the age of 60.

● Nearly 1 in 2 (49%) think older drivers should be banned from driving completely.

● 57% of GB adults think the legal driving age to take a test and drive on the roads should be increased to above 17.

● Over 1 in 3 (37%) think you should have to be 18 to legally drive. Plus, over 1 in 10 (11%) think you should have to be 21 years old – 4 years above the current age limit.

● The over 55s are nearly twice as likely as 18-24 year olds (64% versus 36%) to think we should increase the driving age limit above 17.

● The top reason selected by respondents who think the driving age should be 18 or above was that they think younger people take more risks when driving (66%).

● 77% of those who think there should be a ban on people driving at a certain age said it was because they think older drivers don’t have fast enough reaction times.

● 1 in 10 think a compulsory re-test should occur between the ages of 60 and 65.

● The top reasons they believe older drivers should retake the test are:

○ Older drivers don’t have fast enough reaction times (71%).
○ Older drivers have bad eyesight (47%).
○ Older drivers drive slowly and cause more congestion (33%).
○ Older drivers don’t remember the rules of the road (26%).

A spokesperson from Brake said:

“These are certainly some interesting findings that add to the debate about the most effective ways of ensuring the safety of our younger and older drivers who are amongst the most at risk on our roads. It is essential to have robust procedures in place that ensure younger and older drivers are not inadvertently putting themselves and others at risk.

“A dangerous combination of inexperience and over-confidence makes younger drivers a high road safety risk, which is why we are calling for the introduction of a comprehensive Graduated Driver Licensing system in the UK. A GDL system would incorporate a mandatory learning period and post-test training, ensuring that all new drivers had the necessary tools and knowledge to drive safely on our roads.”

“For older drivers, licence renewal at 70 prompts them to check and self-certify they are fit to drive but this process can be improved. The government needs to look at how fitness to drive regulation can be more rigorously enforced, such as compulsory eyesight testing throughout a driver’s career, rather than simply expecting drivers to self-certify that they are fit to drive.”

IAM RoadSmart

Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart Director of Policy and Research, said:

“Not surprisingly, the survey shows that many people blame the old and the young for crashes when this is not always the case. In reality, new drivers are the most at risk group and older drivers are among the safest. Statistics do however show that drivers over 85 do start to have more crashes as their faculties fade and their experience is no longer enough to compensate.

“The clear message from the survey is that there is strong support for change and that must be harnessed to inform a new national debate about the best way to keep older drivers safer for longer and to give new drivers the experience they need for a lifetime of safe driving on the road. This debate cannot be delayed much longer as the demographic time bomb of an ageing population is ticking right now.

“Older drivers really value their independence and it may be that a tougher testing regime is an acceptable trade off to allow them to keep driving. At IAM RoadSmart, we think that raising the age of licence renewal to 75 and insisting on evidence of an eye test is a simple and effective first step that could be introduced very quickly. If doctors could also prescribe a mature driver assessment then friends and families of an ageing relative could have much more confidence in their ability and safety. Simply asking for a rerun of the existing test designed for learners would stop many older people driving far too early and generate a downward spiral of state dependence, illness and depression for thousands stuck at home.”

“For younger drivers graduated driver licensing (GDL) is widely accepted as the best way forward. What we need now is for the respondents to this survey to tell their MPs to get on with adopting it!”

The YouGov survey polled 2101 people in GB between 11th and 12th April 2019. The data has been weighted to be representative of the GB adult population. The survey asked adults (18+) questions to understand their personal views and attitudes towards driving ages.


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49% Of Brits Want Older Drivers Banned From The Roads