- New research reveals as many as 73% of parents are unwilling to take their children out driving during lockdown, mainly due to being unsure about the rules
- Two in three parents fear that their bad driving habits could be passed on to their teenagers
- One in five parents worry that teaching their children to drive will lead to arguments
The team at Bill Plant Driving School conducted the research as part of an ongoing study, looking into how parents across the country feel about stepping in as a driving instructor throughout the lockdown period. More than 1,500 parents – all of whom with children aged 17+ currently learning to drive – took part in the research.
It was initially found that as many as three quarters of parents (73%) are unwilling to take their children on ‘driving lessons’ during the latest lockdown, with the top reasons emerging as ‘unsure of the current rules’ (36%), ‘don’t want to risk going out unnecessarily’ (19%) and ‘to avoid risk of an accident’ (13%).
Indeed, official government advice currently states that it’s only acceptable for learners to go out and practice their driving if they’re on an essential journey’; simply going out for the purpose of practicing could lead to learner drivers and parents being fined.
What’s more, one in three parents (36%) felt they weren’t in a position to take on the role of driving instructor, while a further 66% revealed that they have bad driving habits that they feared would be passed on to their children. Given a list of the bad habits they have and asked to select those that applied, the following were found to be the most common:
- Not checking mirrors often enough – 71%
- Road rage – 63%
- Speeding – 45%
- Tailgating – 38%
- Making decisions last minute – 35%
Asked on their general opinion about taking their children on driving lessons, as many as one in five (21%) also fear that by stepping in as driving instructor, they would actually damage the relationship with their child, for reasons such as increased stress levels and lack of trust in each other’s driving ability.
Peter Brabin, Head of Training at Bill Plant Driving School, commented on the findings:
“We would always welcome pupils undertaking some private practice in a car with a family relative but, it should only compliment learning from a professionally trained driving instructor.
Due to lockdown, the pupil might want their parent to step in for the instructor, so it is interesting to see that 66% of parents don’t actually want to pass on potential bad driving habits to their child or cause family arguments.
As frustrating as it is it currently being unable to offer driving lessons, we would recommend waiting until the lockdown restrictions are lifted before starting or resuming your learning with a driving school.
It’s worth noting that parents currently should not be taking their teenagers on driving lessons right now, unless it’s incorporated into an essential journey. This is the government guidance right now and could result in fines otherwise.”