Learners on motorways proposal

The government want to let learner drivers practice on motorways.  But only with an approved instructor, exercising their judgement, in dual control cars.  So what is so special and dangerous about motorways that it needs special vehicles?


It is something I often wonder in places like the southern end of the A23, and especially when travelling between town from Medway on the A2, with its four lanes and hard shoulder.

There surely has to be more to a motorway than just different colour road signs?


The proposal would not apply to learner motorcyclists.

We do not consider it would be appropriate to allow learner motorcyclists to ride on motorways; they cannot be accompanied in the same way as learner drivers and are much more vulnerable than someone in an enclosed vehicle. https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/allowing-learner-drivers-to-have-driving-lessons-on-motorways/allowing-learner-drivers-to-take-lessons-on-motorways#motorcycles

I don’t see any real difference…

there is no much difference, except for speed.  most learners are terrified of speed and motorways in general.  i think its a good thing for car drivers.

Given that most instructors have no idea how to use a Motorway or drive on a Motorway properly, the proposal worries me.

Speed is the same with a dual carriageway that’s 2 lanes or more. However with the motorway there is a sense of being trapped there, that you can’t get off for miles. This can terrify new drivers.

Personally I always found motorway driving the easiest and safest. But when it gets busy on the m25 where people stay in the 3rd lane and people do stupid things like undertaking (not simply driving in same lane), it can be teriffying for someone new to driving. You have to use mirrors a lot and have a lot of spatial awareness and some can develop this only with driving extensively

That’s my uneducated 2 penny based on nothing more than casual anecdotes, discussions with new learners and observation

fair point about the being trapped. I did dual carriageway on my car test with no hard shoulder available too.

That’s how it works in The Netherlands and motorway driving is part of the test. You cannot drive outside of lessons in a dual control car with a qualified instructor until you pass your test though. I think that system is better personally as it reduces the risk of a learner having an accident.

I think the reason motorways are not included is because there are areas that it would take them too long to reach an actual motorway

Fair enough. I did that in SA a lot. In fact I was driving when I was 13 on farms and then when I finally went for my license, I just got in and drove as normal. Passed with flying colours… Damn, that was a long time ago!

Standard in Germany, should be mandatory to teach moving in a out of fast moving traffic, matching speeds on slip roads, spacial awareness and steering at speed.

Yeah, but that’s all possible on a fast dual carriageway

This reminds me that in my opinion the current Dot test should only get you a provisional kind of licence for a few years to gain betyer experience prior to a test closer to an Advanced Test and be retested periodically. Driving schools too!

I think it’s great as it might show learner drivers how to overtake cars and trucks safely. I had to explain this to my gf as she was never taught during her lessons.

Not teaching on motorways just make it seem like a more dangerous place and therefore stressful when first using them after passing the test. 

Few drivers know how to behave on the Motorway road. Any form of road craft training or education has to be a good thing.

We all think we’re so damned good at it, who will admit to being a bad driver?

I think that’s two quite different problems - it’s obvious that driving standards are dropping generally, perhaps in line with people generally assuming they’re a good driver. But, separately, there’s the question of what the benefit is to learning to drive on a motorway, as against whatever the downsides are of having learners there.

Motorways don’t seem to be the venue for a large enough proportion of accidents to make me think it’s a place that people really need more or better training.

Looks like a good suggestion seeing how many people are terrified of motorways even after passing their test.

I need my afternoon nap, driving in the fog later

This is part of the reason the Dot test should not be the final test.

Driving on motorways is part of the UK experience, therefore it should be part of the UK driving tuition and examination experience.

As should: parallel parking, parking in tight car park spaces, night driving. I’d also love to see more awareness of other road users being part of the test, ideally a requirement to ride a motor scooter in traffic for a specified time.

Having had my afternoon nap I’ve come up with the, probably crap, idea to include fording in the UK Driving Test once we’ve got the Brexit thing out of the way :wink: