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24th Jan 20
Four young drivers in Northamptonshire have become the latest graduates of a scheme working to improve the safety of the county’s roads, taking the number of drivers who have now passed the Northampton Advanced Motorists advanced driving course to more than 1,000.
The IAM RoadSmart Advanced Driving Course gives drivers of all ages and levels of experience the opportunity to enhance their skills, enjoy their driving more and become a safer driver.
The four young drivers have benefitted from a new scheme that is offering the opportunity for 30 young people – under 26 years old – to take the Advanced Driving Course at a reduced price of £49. This has been made possible thanks to a grant from Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold.
Sixteen young drivers are already signed up – including the four who have recently been successful – and 14 places are still available.
The Northamptonshire Safer Roads Alliance*, the partnership that co-ordinates road safety initiatives in the county, has made young drivers a priority since they are more likely to be involved in a collision than other road users.
The Alliance has extended the popular Carkraft courses that are run each year, to create capacity to help more young drivers develop good driving habits, some before they are old enough to take to the roads by themselves. The Alliance is also developing educational tools including a video that can be rolled out to teach young drivers about the dangers of distractions such as loud music, mobile phones and excess speed.
Northampton Advanced Motorist’s work with young drivers plays an important role in that wider programme. The Advanced Driving Course takes drivers through a variety of road types and conditions and coaches them in skills and techniques that will improve their confidence and enhance their safe driving style.
Chief Superintendent Mick Stamper, Chairman of the Northamptonshire Safer Roads Alliance, said: “We are trying to make all road users safer, and statistics show that young drivers aged 17 to 25 have a greater risk of coming to harm on the roads. We are working hard to ensure that young drivers are safe, know the dangers of anti-social driving and are ultimately, involved in fewer collisions.”
The four young drivers who have successfully completed the Advanced Driving Course are: George McGuinness (18), Jack Barton (18), Adam Browett (18) and Christian Rodley (19). Jack became the 1,000 test pass for Northampton Advanced Motorists.
Northamptonshire Police Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said: “We know that there is work to do to help young drivers develop good skills and safe driving habits that will set them up for a lifetime. I was delighted to be able to support this great scheme run by Northampton Advanced Motorists, whose volunteers who are playing such a key role in promoting road safety and educating drivers in Northamptonshire.”
John Norrie, Northampton Advanced Motorists Chairman explained “We have always found young drivers a difficult group to reach. This scheme is an exciting opportunity and has significantly increased the number of newly qualified drivers we are working with.“