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50,000 new drivers lose licence within two years
Under current legislation, any new driver who receives six (or more) penalty points within two years of passing their test automatically has their licence revoked.
Swiftcover.com has been sifting through the official data, and found that almost 50,000 new drivers have been banned in this fashion in the last four years.
The data, which comes from the Drive and Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA), reveals that 48,983 drivers have had their licence revoked under the 1995 Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act since 2009.
But while the vast majority – 33,910 (69%) – were under 25, this isn’t exclusively a young driver problem.
Amongst those banned within two years of passing their test, 1,608 were in their 40s, 294 were in their 50s and 38 in their 60s. Three drivers over 70 were also disqualified under the law.
As for the gender divide, men are four times more likely than women to accumulate six points or more within the two-year new driver timeframe – only 21% of those banned were female.
Beyond the potentially serious safety issues here, Swiftcover.com also points out there is a significant cost implication for these law breaking motorists.
Combined, the licence losers will have incurred £6.5 million in extra expenses, and that’s just based on the £136 per head in fees for re-applying for provisional licences and re-taking the driving theory and practical driving tests.
Swiftcover.com believes that part of the problem is a lack of awareness about the two-year, six-point rule amongst these new drivers.
For example, 23-year-old student Alec, who passed his test two weeks ago said:
“I had no idea there were any different regulations for new drivers, and I also don’t know what would get me six points. I’d guess illegal drink driving, but for all I know anything could get me six points.”
Clearly, there is a problem here.
Director of policy for the Institute of Advanced Motorists, Neil Greig:
“We need a reminder campaign so that no new driver can claim ignorance of the law. Two strikes and you’re out is a very clear message but it does not seem to be getting through.”
Some might say that anyone interested in taking charge of a motor vehicle should also take responsibility for knowing what the law is. But perhaps that’s asking too much these days.
For context, since 2008 well over 700,000 people have passed their driving test in the UK on average every year – although in 2012 this figure fell to 677,000, reflecting rising costs.
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