A recent survey by RED driving school has revealed that up to a whopping 75% of driving instructors believe that the driving test should include a specific cycle awareness component.
RED’s CEO, Ian McIntosh spoke about the need for education and awareness to increase road safety, saying: Latest statistics show that cyclist casualties have increased by 10 per cent, with a 13 per cent rise in the number of cyclists killed or seriously injured (DfT Q1 stats). Although we are all aware of the importance of road safety, things need to change if our roads are going to become safer.
With more people taking to their bikes its likely that road accidents could increase. Now, more than ever, we need to crack down on careless, dangerous driving, focusing on education and training to improve road safety.
Although inclusion of cycling and motorcycling awareness in the UK driving test would be a step in the right direction, a change in perception and emphasis on education is whats really needed. Current and future road users need to be taught how to use the road safely, to minimise accidents and serious incidents. If attitudes are to change, road safety education needs to start from a very young age.
Instructors are regular road users and responsible for the development of new drivers skills. Their recommendations and opinions should feature highly in education around road use and testing processes, whether related to cyclists or other vehicle users.
RED’s survey couldn’t come at a better time; the number of cyclists on the roads is expected to swell thanks to the incredible popularity of Olympic superstar cyclist, Bradley Wiggins. With countless new cyclists on the roads, perhaps now is the time to introduce cycle awareness modules to the practical driving test? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.