With the news that 23% of drivers in the 18-24 age group have had a crash, Nigel Mansell is backing calls for driver training before people get to the age of 17.

Mansell, a Member of the Commission for Global Road Safety, said: "This is a vitally important issue which doesn't get enough attention. Too many of our young people are still being killed or injured on the roads. These are preventable tragedies."

The report on Young Drivers was compiled by the AA and the Make Roads Safer Campaign. Edmund King, director of the AA, said: "Road safety education must be a life skill that starts at the age of three but is continually refreshed throughout life. It needs to begin many years before someone is old enough to apply for their provisional licence. If teenagers have had interesting and practical road safety education they are less likely to take dangerous risks when they get behind the wheel alone."

The Institute of Advanced Motorists agrees. Simon Best, its Chief Executive said "A focus on road safety in the national curriculum is currently non-existent. This needs to change. Driver training for under 17 year olds can be a fun way of introducing young people to safe driving."

He went on stress the importance of post-test training as well. "Young male drivers especially suffer from a deadly combination of overconfidence and inexperience. Post-test training is without doubt the best way to address this."

To help young drivers, the AA is offering 1,000 free driver improvement courses for those who have recently passed their test.