Latest figures have revealed that 126 people per year have been killed or seriously injured (KSI) in road traffic collisions that involved a novice driver (within two years of passing driving test).
Further, almost one-third (41) of these casualties occurred within the first six months of the driver passing their test highlighting an increased risk during the immediate post test period.
The figures were released last week by the Northern Ireland’s Road Safety Strategy (NIRSS) to 2020 Annual Statistical Report.
In recent years, however, the number of people killed or seriously injured by a driver in the six month period following their test pass has substantially reduced, almost halving from 81 per year, on average, in the baseline period (2008-10), when they accounted for 41% of all such casualties.
Similar reductions in KSI casualty numbers were apparent in the 7-12 month group with the reduction tailing off as driving time increases up to 24 months post test.
The report also shows that approaching two-thirds (64%) of vehicles recorded exceeded the speed limits on built-up roads under ‘free running’ conditions (11pm to 7am) in 2014.
This reduced to under half (41%) not complying with speed limits on this road type during the period 7am to 11pm when most travelling occurs and congestion serves to dampen vehicle speeds.
These proportions have remained fairly static since the start of the reporting period in 2010.