The Folly of Novice Drivers  

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ROAD SAFETY ARTICLE

The challenges faced were: relentless hacking into the DSSP Portal to gain unmerited advantage for driving schools clients, worry by many Nigerian on the quality of driver training and certification, citizens are worried, and rightly so, about licenses touting arising from the knack for driving schools breach of DSSP processes and procedures, registration of a trainees by multiple driving schools, in-fighting and rivalry among driving schools in the state leading to unhealthy competition, non-adherence to the rule of engagement and outright deceit operation of the State committees of driving schools’ registration leading to rogue approval of non-existing/sub-standard driving schools, general non- cooperative attitude of driving schools operators to be properly organized for better operation and regulation in order to ensure best practice is maintained.

 Based on the FRSC record, the status of driving schools stands at 1,450 certified with 940 adjudged to be running effectively while 124 have been suspended due to compliance breaches and 510 driving schools were not accredited due to standard non-compliance.

The three stage Graduated driver’s licence is the first in the country and an improvement from what had existed before now. 

It is broken into three parts; the first part is the pre adult (18-25) years category. Those within this group after complying with the relevant tests and other procedures as stated in the quoted sections, if found suitable, are issued with a drivers lincence that is renewal after every year. Class B licence. The second is the adult (26-64) years category is renewal every three (3) years. Only applicants within this category are qualified to apply for a commercial driver’s licence.

However, for such applicants who already possess a class B (private) to qualify for a commercial driver’s lincence they must belong to a transport union, attend a driving school and pass a medical test government hospital. The last category is the post adult meant for people between the age of 65 years and above. Like the pre adult category, this group’s driver’s licence is renewal every year after proof of medical fitness.

 In Canada, Motor Vehicles are provincially regulations vary by province. In British Columbia following the instructional phase and after passing a road test, new drivers are required to show a green N (novice) plate until they have passed an additional road test usually after 24 months.

In British Columbia a red L (for learner) plate is required for 12 months before the N can be issued, and new drivers with this marking are not permitted to drive without a licensed driver over the age of 25 present in the vehicle. In the case of France, after passing their driving test, learners must display an a plate (for apprentice) for three years 2 years for those who learned with their parents. In the case of the United Kingdom, all new drivers in Great Britain upon receipt of a provisional licence, must display L plates at all times and be accompanied by another driver who is over 21 years of age and has held a full and valid licence for the type of vehicle being driven for at least three years. In Wales either red L plates or red D plates are permitted due to the bilingual legislation in force within the country, while a learner is driving the vehicle. After learners have passed a driving test for the appropriate vehicle, they may opt to display green P plate (P for passed) to show that they have less experience than other driver. These plates are voluntary and not required by law or the high way code. L plate are required to be displayed at all times whilst riding a motorcycle or moped of no more than 125cc (7.6 cu in) after passing motorcycle compulsory basic training (CBT). This sub licence allows the holder to ride any motorcycle up to 125cc without a full and proper licence. Therefore it is mainly used by younger motorist (16-19) who are legally allowed to ride motorcycles up to 125cc but cannot afford to buy full lessons to gain a restricted licence (enabling the holder to travel on motorways and carry pillion passenger but only able to ride motor bikes up to 33hp 25kw after 2 years). Riders over 21 may opt to train for full lincence therefore a CBT is just a stepping stone to this.

The story in Northern Ireland is almost similar. One year after passing a driver test, the driver is defined as a restricted driver who must not must not exceed 45mph and must display an “R plate” consisting of a red sans serif R on a white back ground. L plates in Northern Ireland commonly have an R plate as a revers side. R plate drivers are often viewed as a nuisance on motorways, due to their limited speed resulting in many restricted drivers not displaying their R plate or not keeping to the restricted limit. In the republic of Ireland, you can obtain a learners permit at the age of 17. Before applying for your first learners permit you must pass a computerized Driver Theory Test.