I received my driving license 33 years ago. In all that time my skills have never been reassessed or updated. Yet there are other things in my life, far less dangerous than driving, that I am expected to update.
Example first aid – there is a requirement for me to have a first aid certificate to do my job. I did my 1st first aid course 40 years ago and I have never had to use that skill.
Electricians have to be assessed annually, gas fitters every 3 years. But deaths from electrical or gas installations are minimal and always have been.
On average 3,000 people a year are killed due to driving annually on UK roads.
This figure has not reduced since the introduction of speed cameras or the Speed Awareness Courses. Vehicle incidents happen and will always happen with fatalities, but most are not due to speeding but bad driving. Essentially if you are speeding then that is bad driving.
Drivers need to be taught to be sensible when driving.
Anyone who drives for a living should be assessed every 3 years. This would not be a pass or fail unless the driver is that bad. This would be a practical (ie driving with an instructor present) as well as a test paper just to remind and update skills.
People who drive for a living – postman, delivery drivers, sales people, sales representatives, farmers, trades people, construction workers, anyone who drives a van or car for a company on company business or for their own line of work.
The idea of putting a speed camera van at the bottom of a hill, Monday – Friday 9am -5pm isn’t there to improve driving, it is there to fine people to raise money for the Treasury. It doesn’t catch, stop or educate boy racers driving for fun at night.
I witness some appalling driving, but they are not speeding so the chances of getting caught are minimal. I followed a van for 10 miles. The driving was driving erratically. When I drew next to him at the traffic lights he was on his phone! But that’s OK as he wasn’t speeding he was driving dangerously.
At the age of 68 everyone should be required to take the a driving test if they wish to keep driving and that should continue every 3 years. This would be a pass or fail course.
The benefits are obvious – less crashes, less fatalities, less police, ambulance and hospital time and expense. Maybe cheaper insurance.
It would generate a lot of employment for driving assessors and may generate more money than speed cameras for the Treasury in vat and tax revenues and save money not employing camera teams.
But it can’t be introduced without giving something back. Remove all speed cameras, fixed and mobile units. Scrap the Speed Awareness Courses (driving is a practical skill not reading a book) and bring in reassessment courses for professional drivers.