A CHARITY has called for urgent action to tackle the problem of crashes caused by young drivers.

Brake said a graduated driver licensing system, something the Lancashire Telegraph’s Wasted Lives campaign has been calling for for more than four years, must be introduced.

The scheme would allow novice drivers to develop their skills, and experience, gradually over time, through a minimum lear-ning period and a ‘novice driver’ period after gaining a license.

Lancashire has the highest rate of road accidents in the North West, with the majority of incidents blamed on young male drivers.

Brake’s Julie Townsend said: “Young drivers, aged 17 to 24, continue to be involved in a disproportionately high number of road deaths and injuries.

“One in four deaths and serious injuries on British roads in 2009 involved a young driver, despite young people accounting for just one in eight licence holders.

"Through our support services, Brake hears first-hand about the heartbreak and trauma that the loss of young lives causes.

“Graduated driver licensing is shown to be effective in cutting casualties – and could also help us to create a safer driving culture.

"We hope the Government’s new strategic framework for road safety will include decisive action to stem the waste of human life caused by young driver crashes.”

The Lancashire Telegraph’s Wasted Lives campaign was launched in 2007, calling for legal and educational reform to the young driver training programme to reduce the number of accidents caused by those under the age of 25.

Brake supports families who have been bereaved and injured in road crashes, as well as campaigning for safer roads for everyone.

Families affected by road casualties can call Brake’s helpline on 0845 603 8570.