Home>News Center>China

Jump in accidents makes driver exam harder
By Cao Desheng (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-02-25 02:40

Mounting numbers of traffic acci-dents and the increasing number of vehicles on the road have prompted China to elevate the standards needed to obtain a driver licence.

A mans shows a fingerprinting device used in an An'hui driving school to prevent cheating in learning course. [newsphoto]
Training hours are expected to be expanded while additional attention will be given to safety awareness, according to new guidelines on training unveiled by the Ministry of Communications yesterday.

The new rules will go into force at driving training schools nationwide next month.

The guidelines will help would-be drivers more easily acquire driving skills but make it more difficult to pass examinations. That is until the students are really equipped with sufficient safety knowledge, Zhang Jianfei, director of the ministry's Department of Highways, said at a press conference yesterday.

Road accidents in China killed more than 107,000 people last year, an increase of almost 2 per cent from the previous year, according to ministry statistics.

"Around 89.8 per cent of the accidents were the drivers' faults," said Zhang.

Reckless driving tops the list of the factors leading to traffic accidents, followed by poor road conditions and overloaded vehicles, Zhang said.

He drew an analogy between the damage of traffic accidents and "the ruthlessness of tigers," saying the surging accident rates year-on-year have become a hard nut to crack.

"The poor safety awareness and inadequate knowledge about traffic safety for some drivers have become key problems to be addressed to reduce accidents," Zhang said.

The country's economic boom has meant a surge in the number of people who own cars and who are obtaining driver licenses.

By the end of last year, China boasted about 30 million vehicles, among which, the proportion of private cars exceeded more than 50 per cent.

In the meantime, around 5.1 million new drivers were trained last year.

Hearing about the publication of the guidelines, a taxi driver in Beijing said it might help reduce the number of accidents considering some people disregard traffic regulations during driving.

"Most of the accidents are caused by drivers' speeding or overtaking recklessly, leaving safety behind their ears," said Luo Shuihe from the Yinjian Taxi Company.

China aims to lower the growth rate of deaths from road accidents by 1.5 per cent this year.

Besides promoting the new guidelines for driver training nationwide, the ministry will continue the safety project starting from last year, Zhang said.

"We plan to renovate a total of 88,000 unsafe road sections in addition to 1,091 bridges that might cause traffic accidents," he said.

(China Daily 02/25/2005 page2)

  Today's Top News     Top China News

South Korean nabbed in illegal banking



Man who kidnaps schoolboy seized



Progress in people's legal rights



Top bank warns of investment rebound



More sectors opened to private investors



ISO meeting fails to back WAPI standard


  Man who kidnaps schoolboy seized
  Paper maker backs off from hotelier lawsuit
  Nation urged to take the lead in global trade
  Progress in people's legal rights
  South Korean nabbed in illegal banking
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  Related Stories  
Changchun police catch hit-and-run driver
Study: Cell phone use ages young drivers
Learner drivers lose easy 'licences to kill'
Drivers face new third-liability rule
Drivers face new third-liability rule
Drivers in the hot seat
Drivers in the hot seat with new rules
  News Talk  
  It is time to prepare for Beijing - 2008