Road Safety

How do we create safer young drivers? It’s the perennial question, seemingly unsolvable, but this is exactly what Young Driver Focus 19 is working to do. It’s the raison d’etre of the event, the sixth highly successful annual conference of its kind set up by FirstCar with the support of ingenie, Road Safety GB and the RAC Foundation, amongst others.

Leading from the Front

Despite our enviable international position of now having the safest roads in the world when it comes to road deaths, effective improvements in reducing the carnage have effectively plateaued across Europe despite some amazing interventions locally, nationally and internationally. As ex UK Chief Constable and Executive Chairman of the event, Meredydd Hughes, put it in his introduction: “Difficulties on our roads are getting greater, and driving on our roads even more hazardous.” Traffic levels continue to increase exponentially and, while technology aims to help make our lives easier, more efficient and safer, it can also bring with it its own problems, from screen distractions behind the wheel, to the 24/7 lifestyle that leaves everyone desperate to catch up with expectations. Road safety and driver education is not only trying to conquer previous goals, but also new conundrums.

Young drivers remain a stubborn problem when it comes to road safety across the globe. With 500,000 new drivers hitting the roads every year in the UK alone, perhaps it’s not so surprising. Understanding the real causes is the only way to provide real solutions, and that is what Young Driver Focus is all about.

An Award-Winning Day

There were so many great, thought provoking presentations throughout the day covering everything from seat belts to cycling, face communication to social media.

There were also the unique and highly respected ‘FirstCar Young Driver Safety Awards’, which this year included a Lifetime Achievement Award for recently retired DVSA Chief Examiner, Lesley Young.