Driving Test

Ask the Traffic School Instructor: Re-taking The Driving Test

Question: Wouldn’t it be a good idea for drivers to have to take a new driving test every few years?

Answer: That sounds like a good idea and I would personally be all for it but we have to take a look at the number of people who actually receive a ticket for traffic violations and the impact that would have on the DMV.

Looking at the state of Florida, the figures from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles show that there were 2,243,984 non-criminal moving violations issued in 2013. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but there were 15,417,032 licensed drivers in the state of Florida in 2013. That means that moving violation tickets were  issued to only 14.5% of the total number of licensed drivers in the state. Even if we included all of the criminal violations (Ex: reckless driving, DUI, racing) and the non-moving violations (Ex: parking tickets, failure to wear a seat belt) the grand total would be 3,915,310 violations or 25% of Florida licensed drivers.

The figures don’t show how many of those tickets were issued to the millions of tourists who visit the state each year so that reduces the total percentage of Florida licensed drivers who receive a ticket even further.The figures above mean that 75% of the licensed drivers in the state are apparently driving safely and obeying the traffic laws each year.

For anyone who has waited in line at the DMV, imagine how long the wait would be if all drivers had to re-test every few years and how many more driver license examiners we would need to hire to cover the increased workload.

The fact is that most people who receive a ticket in any state are well aware that they were violating the law at the time. Whether it’s speeding, running a red light, or making an illegal U-turn, those actions require a conscious effort on the part of the driver. We have discussed many times that there is no such thing as an automobile accident. Accidents are something we have no control over. In a car crash, one or more drivers make a poor (conscious) choice that leads to the crash and it was no accident.

Instead of re-testing every few years, a good idea for all drivers is to take a refresher driving safety course. Not only will these courses refresh your memory on the driving rules, they can also inform you of newly passed traffic laws you may not be aware of. Taking a course, whether online or in a classroom, can help you to refocus on the driving environment and strengthen your resolve to be a safer driver. Also, depending on your insurance carrier, it may lower your insurance rates.