Hate the Driving Test? Blame Britain

driving test

Starting on June 1, 1935, in the United Kingdom, everyone had to pass a driving test in order to drive cars on the roads. The government created this test to lower fatality rates of car accidents. Before 1935 about 7,000 people died due to car accidents each year. After the mandatory driving tests, the fatality rate went down to 6,000 in one year. With more safety features introduced in cars, and safer driving, the fatality rates have decreased significantly.

The test in 1935 is similar to driving tests today. The potential driver had to pass a vision exam, show safe driving maneuvers, and knowledge of driving laws. Those that passed could continue driving. Those that failed had to put a license with a large L, signifying learner, on the car and retake the test. We still use a similar system today in our driving tests. Though instead of a large L, we have a learner’s permit signifying the learner cannot drive alone.

The point of the compulsory driving test was to reduce fatalities. Do you think it worked? Do you think driving tests signify the ability to drive safely? Personally, my parents taught me about safe driving. In fact, though I took the written version of the driving test, I did not do the driving portion. I had taken a driving class that included actual driving and they accepted that as the driving portion. Do you agree with the driving test or would you change it?

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