Comments for claim 5.13
Safe driving is no accident

Drivers who share responsibility for accidents or who are caught otherwise causing a danger should be sent for compulsory training. This is a positive way to help them avoid repeating mistakes.

There can be little doubt that the same mistakes are repeated again and again by the same drivers. Consider these quotes from Roadcraft:

Drivers at risk:

Sadly the evidence shows that we do not learn very well from our mistakes. Even after taking account of age, sex, annual mileage and driving experience, some drivers are consistently more at risk than others:

  • If you have an accident in one three-year period, you are twice as likely to have another accident in the next three years.
  • If you have had an accident for which you were at least partly responsible, you are four times more likely to have a similar accident in the next year.
Repeating Accidents:

Drivers also tend to repeat the types of accident they have. If you have hit another vehicle from behind, you are twice as likely as the average driver to do so again. If you have crashed into another vehicle after pulling into its path in one three year period, you are three times more likely than normal to have a similar accident in the next three years.

from Roadcraft current edition

Since these repeat behaviours are consistent driver errors, it is clear that we have a good place to start a programme of training. We could be sending people who have had accidents to get further training specifically designed to help them avoid repeating the same mistakes.

In fact we could take the idea one stage further. It has been suggested that for every actual accident there are 5 similar "near misses". We could instigate the training requirement whenever a near miss was observed, and get the benefits even before the first accident. The Police could be used here to make a new and valuable contribution to road safety. They could specifically set out to find near miss behaviour and use the evidence to invoke compulsory additional training.

If the public knew that training was available and that near misses were a repeating pattern leading to accidents, they might even choose to go for training themselves. These are clearly facts worth publicising.