At around 15 years of age, many young people become more mobile. At this age, you are not only on the road longer and more often by bike, from now on you can obtain a driving license for a moped and - albeit limited to the domestic market - for a moped. In addition, many young people start preparing for accompanied driving at 17.
With the expansion of the radius and the introduction of motorization, the frequency of accidents increases. The number of injured cyclists increases as soon as they switch to secondary school, and road users aged 18 to 24 have by far the highest risk of accidents on the road. In 2021, 287 young adults were killed. This means that 11.2 % of all fatalities in road traffic were between the ages of 18 and 24, although only one in 13 of the total population (7.4 %) was included.
The Ministry, together with various partners, has developed a range of schemes for adolescents and young adults that are designed to increase the road safety of young people without limiting the mobility that allows them to conquer the world at that age.
“The Law of the Street” – road safety education with Ralph Caspers
In an online series entitled “The Law of the Street”, Ralph Caspers, the TV presenter known from the youth information programmes “Wissen macht Ah!” and “Sendung mit der Maus”, aims to encourage young road users to think about risks and hazardous situations in road traffic. Of course, he does this with his sense of humour and his pleasant and easy-going way of transmitting information. Additional teaching materials for secondary schools are also provided free of charge for use in the classroom. The units have a modular design and can be used for all school subjects and types; they can thus be adapted to the timeframe and the academic level of the classes. The six teaching topics address the following road safety aspects:
- alcohol and drugs;
- risky behaviour;
- powered two-wheelers; and
- accompanied driving from 17.
„REALLY?!“ Play the „GO REAL GAME“
The “ECHT JETZT?!” campaign deals with the risks of being involved in an accident as a result of being distracted by a smartphone in road traffic and as a pedestrian. With the initiative, which aims to prevent real-life accidents in the digital life, parents are addressed via flyers displayed at paediatricians’ practices to think about whether dangerous behaviour has to “really” happen. In this way, the Federal Working Group for More Safety for Children (BAG) intends to draw the attention of parents to the role model function they have for their children.
Young people are addressed by the initiative through an online campaign – the “GO REAL GAME”. The attention of young smartphone users is caught at a place where they usually spend time – online! The content for the prevention of accidents is communicated in a way that appeals to the target group: wrapped in a story, playful and wittily. The “GO REAL GAME” tells the incredible story of Insta girl Leyla and gamer Nick. Distracted by their smartphones, the two 13-year-olds only just avoid an accident and, as a result, are transformed: they become PIXELated! The only way to become real again is the “GO REAL GAME”. Leyla and Nick need assistance from the community. Good luck, Leyla and Nick! Further information on the “GO REAL GAME” (in German).
The “Young Drivers Scheme” becomes “Young + Safe + Ready to go”
For the target group of young drivers, the road accident statistics show a significantly increased likelihood of being involved in an accident in the nights from Friday to Saturday and from Saturday to Sunday. To effectively counteract these accidents, the German Accident Prevention Organization has evolved the “Young Drivers Scheme”. The events, which are held in schools under the new slogan “Young + Safe + Ready to go” as of 2021, are organized by the local accident prevention organizations.
Every event consists of two elements:
- the project components for classroom lessons covering the main risks for being involved in an accident (alcohol/drugs, distraction, vehicle safety, etc.) as well as
- he action day where a drunk buster goggles course, a driving simulator or a rollover simulator make it possible to address accident-related issues.
The stimulating elements are designed to encourage pupils to question their behaviour and think about alternative patterns that enable them to move towards safe road user behaviour. The staging of the events in schools is free of charge. Further information on the “Young + Safe + Ready to go” programme (in German).
Accompanied driving from 17 – the preparations begin on the young person's 16th birthday
Accompanied driving from 17 can lower young drivers’ likelihood of being involved in an accident by up to 20 percent. The “Accompanied Driving from 17” scheme works very simply. At the age of just 16 ½, young people that want to participate in the accompanied driving scheme can register for lessons at a driving school. Here, they complete the same driver training as older learner drivers do – exactly as for the driving licence for 18-year-olds.
After passing the theory and practical test and reaching the age of 17, the young persons participating in the “Accompanied Driving from 17” scheme receive a driving test pass certificate. Together with an identity document, the certificate serves as a driving licence for accompanied driving. From that moment, they are allowed to gain driving experience, accompanied by a person who has to meet certain requirements. Further information on the “Accompanied Driving from 17” scheme (in German).
„TUNE IT SAFE“: Track&Safety Days
The Track & Safety Days offer driving safety training courses and workshops with tuning experts designed especially for young people and young adults enthusiastic about tuning. The events take place at eight driving safety centres throughout Germany. In addition to the events, information on safe tuning and the safe use of the roads are provided via a website, social media, a 56-page tuning magazine as well as further print media. Further information on “TUNE IT SAFE” (in German).