Parents, other family members and friends are risking fines, disqualification or even prison due to lack of knowledge about their responsibilities when supervising learner drivers, new research from the AA reveals.
By law, drivers who take learners on practice drives are deemed to be in control of the car and therefore potentially liable for any offences or accidents even though they are in the passenger seat.
However, a survey of almost 19,000 AA members reveals that some drivers are breaking the law by drinking, texting, making calls or even falling asleep during practice drives. The AA is aware of at least one who was jailed after the learner he was supervising was involved in a crash killing two people.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of those surveyed did not know they would be breaking the law by using their mobile while supervising a learner.
One in eight (13%) were unaware of the need to wear glasses if they need these when they themselves drive; while one in 10 (9%) did not realise that falling asleep in the passenger seat would risk a run-in with the law.
4% of respondents who had supervised learners admitted breaking at least one of these laws – rising to more than one in five (22%) among supervisors aged 21 to 24.
Click here to read the full AA news release.