Road safety and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist says the new driving test regime, which begins today, represents a missed opportunity for making the roads safer.
Although GEM welcomes the longer period of independent driving, the organisationâ€™s road safety officer Neil Worth believes a big step forward in road safety has been missed by the exclusion of any reference to driver behaviour, driving manners or coping strategies for stressful journeys.
â€œJust about anyone can learn to parallel park or follow a satnav,â€ says Neil. â€œWe believe a key component to a lifetime of safe driving is attitude, and in particular how to treat fellow road users.
â€œDrivers who implement GEMâ€™s core values of courtesy, care and concentration on all their journeys are almost certain to experience reduced stress levels and fewer road rage incidents, meaning an altogether safer road environment.
â€œWe are disappointed that nothing has been brought into the new test that covers this vital area of road safety.â€
The new additions to the driving test come into effect today (Monday 4 December), and involve making the independent driving segment longer, changes in the manoeuvres and the introduction of using a satnav.