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Test date: 2018/02

Safety on our roads

Agree/ Disagree
Government and Society

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic.

The only way to improve safety on our roads is to give much stricter punishments for driving offenses.
What extent do you agree or disagree?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your knowledge or experience. Write at least 250 words.

Model Essay

Nowadays, an increasing number of people are concerned about measures to ensure road safety. However, whether imposing stricter penalties for driving offenses is the only way to protect people is still a controversial issue. Although I agree that harsher punishments can act as an effective way to deter people from committing road offenses, I believe that there are better methods to protect the welfare of road users.

Firstly, it is obvious that the implementation of rules can act as a deterrent to would-be lawbreakers. For example, in Vietnam, a motorist not wearing helmet can be fined with $20 to $40, and thus he will be in fear of facing further punishment and avoid committing another offense. Furthermore, more stringent punishments for traffic crimes can be efficient way to reduce traffic accidents. For instance, in the past, China witnessed a significant number of annual road casualties when it had very loosely enforced regulations. However, once harsher laws related to road safety were  implemented in 2009, there was a notable reduction in the total number of traffic accidents.

This is not to say that only by using stricter rules can we enhance the safety of our roads. It is true that there are still other effective measures to ensure people’s safety, such as heightening people’s awareness through the media about the consequences of committing driving offenses, or promoting the use of public transport systems such as buses or trains. To achieve the best results, the most effective method may be to combine all the aforementioned ideas.

In conclusion, I believe that stricter punishments are not the only way to deal with minimizing driving offenses. Measures, including raising people’s awareness and promoting the use of public transport systems, can also contribute to maintaining road safety.

(293 words)


• Harsh = stringent = strict punishments
• To deter somebody from doing something
• Road offenses = traffic-related crimes
• To act as a deterrent to would-be lawbreakers
• To be fined with a certain amount of money
• Road casualties
• Loosely enforced regulations
• To heighten people’s awareness of something
• Aforementioned ideas

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