Proposed initiatives for L & P drivers
Discussion Paper (pdf)
Do you know someone who was killed or seriously injured in a car crash? It might have been a friend, a family member or someone from your school or local sporting club… unfortunately, this happens all too often.
Over the last decade almost 4000 young people aged between 16 and 24 have been killed or seriously injured on South Australia’s roads.
Research shows that crashes are most likely to occur during the first 6 to 12 months of holding a provisional licence when the driver is least experienced and driving unsupervised (see Figure 1). Inexperience is the most significant factor contributing to young driver crashes and in that first year of driving unsupervised the risk of crashing is up to three times higher than that of an experienced driver.
Our community has a responsibility to provide greater protection for young drivers while they are at their most vulnerable stage of driving. Measures to limit exposure to high-risk situations during the first year of unsupervised driving have the potential to significantly reduce road trauma for younger drivers.
Based on novice driver initiatives interstate and overseas, a Discussion Paper outlining possible initiatives to improve the safety of young drivers has been released for public comment. These initiatives reflect world best practice, are evidence-based and many already exist in other Australian states and territories.
Some initiatives may impact on the independence of young drivers, their families and friends, particularly in rural communities and disadvantaged groups. However, young drivers in rural South Australia are 2 1/2 times more likely to die or be injured in a crash than their peers in metropolitan Adelaide.
There is also a belief in the community that road fatalities and serious injuries are largely the result of risk taking or extreme behaviour. In fact, over half of all fatal crashes, and 90% of injury crashes are the result of mistakes or common lapses in judgement. It is for this reason that the initiatives proposed would apply to all novice drivers and are not just reserved for ‘problem drivers’.
These initiatives are not about making life tougher for young drivers. They are about protecting them. Adopting them is likely to result in fewer deaths and injuries among young drivers, their passengers and other road users in South Australia. In some cases, exemptions are proposed (e.g. for employment purposes) to ease the burden on young drivers. Also the restrictions do not apply if a Qualified Supervising Driver (QSD) is present.
The State Government is seeking views on these initiatives from young drivers, parents/caregivers, road safety stakeholders, organisations concerned with youth as well as the broader community.
* QSD – Qualified Supervising Driver – A driver who has held a full driver’s licence for at least 2 years continuously without disqualification.
Get the fact sheet (pdf)
News release - Over 1,000 responses received (pdf)