Queensland P-platers, listen up. If you want to get off your provisional license and get a hold of an unrestricted license, the government could have plans to speed that process up for you.
The Police Federation of Australia, representing Australia’s 54,000 police officers, has proposed initiatives to encourage young drivers to take part in advanced driving courses and in return, allow them access to apply for an unrestricted license – regardless of how many hours recorded under current provisional license laws.
The proposal, not yet finalised, hopes to give young drivers a chance to develop their skills as early as possible and to encourage more awareness to defensive and safer driving.
“Give P-platers some encouragement to do advanced driver training in return for some credit, then you’re likely to encourage better driving. The more that do it the better,” federation chief executive Mark Burgess said.
Rachel Nolan, transport minister for Queensland, has opposing views on the matter though. “Students need their time on the roads,” Ms Nolan said.
The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland also fears the initiative could give younger drivers too much confidence. RACQ spokesman, Gary Fites has said most of the restrictions placed upon provisional drivers are there for their own safety and that relieving them of restrictions such as mandatory leaner and provisional training hours could leave them feeling over-skilled, and overconfident.
Almost 28 per cent of the state’s road toll last year was made up of drivers aged between 17 and 24. The advanced driver training initiative hopes to reduce these statistics through more effective driver’s education.
Although the proposal is based on Queensland drivers, the Police Federation of Australia hopes to expand the incentive nationwide in an upcoming meeting this week about universal, state-to-state, license testing procedures. Stay tuned for more updates.