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Should Learning to Drive in the UK Change?
It’s not unusual for the countdown to your 17th birthday to commence almost instantly after your 16th, and we are pretty it’s due to the fact that when you reach the age of 17, you can start learning to drive.
Your ticket to freedom is within arms reach and you’re ready to hit the road! But is there enough time? Or are you in so much of a hurry that you don’t manage to develop your abilities to the standard that they should be?
Recent debates have stated that in the UK learner drivers should begin learning to drive at a much earlier age than 17. For instance, in Finland children are taught the basics of road safety way before they reach their teens, as part of their school curriculum.
One of the key differences in Finland is that learner drivers have to complete 30 hours of practical driving and 20 theory lessons. Even once both have been completed, learner drivers are only given a restricted licence until they are 20 years of age, unlike here in the UK where learners get a full licence as soon as they pass their driving test.
Finnish learner drivers also have to take two driving tests, one in the summer and one in the winter. Although it can be argued that Finland has very different weather to the UK, this is a great opportunity for learner drivers to experience and be tested on various driving conditions, and on the rare occasion that it snows heavily here in the UK, drivers will be prepared. Maybe it’s time that we took a leaf out of Finland’s book by having driving tests which test different road conditions, such as motorways, country roads or even something as simple as driving in the dark.
Let us know your thoughts? Would you prefer to start learning earlier? Or do you already think the driving test is challenging enough?