The number of motorists taking driver awareness courses has tripled since 2010, according to new data.
The figures from NDORS (National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme) reveal 1,492,236 people attended and completed driver awareness courses in 2019. Of these, 1,282,698 took speed awareness courses; the rest took part in one of eight other types of course, covering infractions relating to mobile phones, motorways and seatbelts.
Only 467,601 people participated in these courses in 2010. The figure increased every year except 2016, when there was a slight drop.
The data shows there’s now an average of over 4,000 people a day choosing to pay up to £95 to spend four hours taking driver awareness courses to avoid penalty points and a fine after committing a motoring offence.
One of the most recently introduced courses is the National Motorway Awareness Course, which saw 106,957 attendees in 2019. It was first introduced in 2017 and is designed to help drivers understand smart motorway laws, such as ‘red X’ signs and variable speed limits.
In spite of the overall increase in drivers taking awareness courses – particularly those for speeding – some courses have seen big drops in the number of attendees. Only 12,417 took seatbelt awareness courses in 2019, compared with 30,318 the previous year.