London, 29 Dec 2002.
For immediate release.

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Press Release

Right Idea, Wrong Drivers, Says ABD
Under a pilot scheme in Northampton motorists caught speeding will be able to choose to go on a driving course instead of getting points on their licence.
Whilst any driver education is welcome, targeting training only at drivers who exceed our all too often inappropriately set speed limits is not an effective method of ensuring that the worst drivers get the training they desperately need.
One in ten drivers — around three million people — are expected to get a speeding ticket next year. Due to currently favoured financially motivated enforcement measures, most of these will be competent drivers exceeding ridiculously low limits on the safest roads. Of course, there will be some drivers amongst these who will benefit from training but the Association of British Drivers believe that the vast majority of careless, reckless and dangerous driving occurs within the speed limits or in areas where speed cameras don't make enough money to be considered.
ABD Road safety spokesman Mark Mcarthur-Christie said:
This scheme is clearly well meaning but will completely miss the majority of those who need retraining. Instead of targeting those who break limits regardless of whether they are behaving dangerously or not, the police need to be able to stop drivers who they observe to be driving in an unsafe manner regardless of speed and send them to retraining courses. If this scheme is to be adopted nationally, the government needs to look at targeting bad drivers, in particular those who have a poor accident record.
ABD Chairman Brian Gregory said:
We all see drivers every day who obviously need re-educating. Anything which gets them onto a training course must be welcomed but many of the worst drivers are those with poor observation and hazard awareness skills and those who take no interest in their driving, many of these compensate for their lack of skill by driving slowly so will not be detected by this scheme. It seems a very haphazard method of targeting limited training resources.
Mr Gregory continued:
The idea that a driver doing 80mph on a quiet motorway in good weather needs to be re-trained, whilst someone doing 69mph into a bank of fog does not, is clearly an affront to common sense.

Notes for Editors

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