First aid will be part of the driving test if an MP gets his way.
Road safety is at the heart of Colchester Conservative Will Quince’s bid to bring in the measure. He believes just a four-hour first aid course could possibly save the lives of hundreds of road users.
Under his plan, learners could not get their driving licence without first taking a course. Such training would not only equip drivers with the wherewithal to assist at a crash scene in the vital minutes before paramedics arrive, it could also make them more aware.
Courses could point out to them the risks of going too fast and driving recklessly, Mr Quince says. He outlined his Driving Licence (Mandatory First Aid Training) Bill in the Commons.
Road traffic accident death toll
Road traffic accidents claimed the lives of nearly 2,000 people in Britain during 2015, Mr Quince said.
He says latest St John Ambulance figures show that Britons’ first-aid know-how is “patchy”.
The number of people who would be sufficiently confident to administer first aid during a road accident is in a minority at 41%, Mr Quince added.
This is something that the member thinks his Bill would put right. First aid expertise would also go a long way towards highlighting bad driving behaviours which can cause accidents, he went on.
Fatalities have fallen
Mr Quince hopes that his proposed Bill would help reduce car accident fatalities like the separate theory test has. Since this came in 20 years ago road deaths have been cut in half.
This is not the first time the MP has championed the need for first aid tuition. Previously, he has called for such training to be made mandatory in school classrooms.
Mr Quince says that driving test first aid education is a happy compromise. He wants a nation where people are less afraid to come forward and assist in a road emergency.
But they need the skills to develop confidence first, he says. Mr Quince’s dream is unlikely to come to fruition for now.
Although the Commons adopted the Bill without opposition, time limitations mean that it will not get the Government backing it requires to become law.
Source: BBC News
Date Published: March 27, 2016
Author: Jonathan Brown