Speed awareness courses cut repeat offending, says research

Speed awareness courses are the most effective way of cutting the number of speeding motorists who reoffend, new research has revealed today.

New figures show that 44 per cent of the UK’s motorists have been caught speeding and, out of these, more than half (54 per cent) have gone on to reoffend.

However, the data conducted by Kwik Fit found that of those drivers who attended a speed awareness course after their first offence, 60 per cent said that they had not been caught speeding a second time – a reoffending rate of 40 per cent.

This compares to a reoffending rate of 58 per cent for those speeding drivers who were given a verbal warning by police, or the 55 per cent of those who were slapped with three penalty points and a fine. The reoffending rate for those given six penalty points and a fine was far higher at 90 per cent.

Despite the results, many drivers surveyed believed that a speed awareness course would have less impact on their driving behaviour than other factors.

The survey of 2,002 adult drivers found that just 24 per cent said that going on a speed awareness course would have a strong impact on their driving, while 39 per cent believed the same for penalty points.

Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, said: “During Road Safety Week it is vital that we all focus on the ways we can improve safety for all road users. One of the biggest dangers on our roads is excessive speed, and the findings of our research indicates that speed awareness courses have a greater impact on drivers’ behaviour than many perceive.

“Of course, while any measure which reduces the number of drivers repeatedly speeding is hugely welcome, we must focus on educating drivers not to speed in the first place – drivers should not need to be caught to be given a wakeup call.”