SACs have a lasting effect
National Speed Awareness Courses have a “long term impact” on driving behaviour, a new independent study has revealed.
The research project, carried out by Professor Robin Martin, of Aston University Business School, Birmingham, showed that the courses improve people’s attitude and intention not to speed in the future.
More than 1,300 motorists from five police force areas were interviewed as part of the 18-month study. All participants had attended a National Speed Awareness Course after they were caught speeding.
The National Speed Awareness Course, delivered by the National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme (NDORS), is now offered by the majority of UK police forces to low level speeding motorists as an alternative to prosecution.
Professor Martin said: “The results clearly show that the speed awareness course led to reliable improvements in clients' attitudes to speeding and importantly their intention not to break the speed limit.”
“The benefit of the course occurred immediately and persisted several weeks after course delivery. The speed awareness course led to very reliable improvements in clients’ attitudes towards not speeding.”
Many people originally attended the course just to avoid three points on their licence but once they completed the course, they realised how good it was, he said.
A total of 80 per cent said they would attend the course again because they knew they would learn something. Course material was shared among more than just the course attender with a “cascade” effect through family and friends.
Older women had a more positive attitude not to speed than younger men after attending the course, revealed the report.
The motorist’s view of the need for safer road initiatives improved as a consequence of attending the course because they had learned useful information and realised the importance of driving within the required speed limit.
The course challenged misconceptions, raised awareness and positively impacted upon motorists' future intentions. It helped people to take personal responsibility for the motoring behaviour within a non-judgemental environment.