Insurance Bureau of Canada applauds changes to graduated driver licensing



    HALIFAX, March 30 /CNW/ - Insurance Bureau of Canada today applauded the
Nova Scotia government for making important changes to the province's
graduated driver licensing (GDL) program.
    "These changes will significantly make Nova Scotia's roads safer," said
Don Forgeron, Vice-President, Atlantic, Insurance Bureau of Canada. "They will
serve to reduce the unnecessarily high number of deaths and injuries currently
experienced by our young drivers. We are especially pleased with the extension
of the learner's phase from six months to 12 months."
    The changes bring Nova Scotia in line with other provinces across the
country and deal with the major components identified in a study by the
Traffic Injury Research Foundation, commissioned by IBC.
    Forgeron added there were two additional changes the industry would have
liked to have seen in the government's package: the elimination of the time
discount for driver's education, and the implementation of an age restriction
for the supervisory driver.
    "There is no substitute for time and experience," said Forgeron. "The
evidence shows that accident rates are higher for drivers who accelerate
through the learner's phase by taking driver's education.
    "Keeping all drivers in phase one for a full 12 months ensures that they
have the opportunity to drive in all seasons, in all types of weather, before
moving on to the next level."
    IBC would also welcome a minimum age of 25 for supervisory drivers.
Currently, it's possible for 17-year-old novice drivers to be supervised by an
18-year-old friend.

    Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national trade association of the
private property and casualty insurance industry. It represents more than 90%
of the non-government home, car and business insurance in Canada. To view news
releases and information, visit the media section of IBC's website at
www.ibc.ca.




For further information:

For further information: Don Forgeron, (902) 429-2730


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