May 2, 2008

Government Launches innovative Learner Driver Training

Government Launches innovative Learner Driver Training

MEDIA RELEASE

The Hon Anthony Albanese

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

May 2 2008

The Rudd Labor Government will provide funding of $17 million to an innovative road safety program which over the next five years will deliver more than 200,000 free driving lessons to learner drivers and their parents.

Later today I will launch keys2drive in Tasmania (Hobart) – the State in which the program will be fine tuned by the Australian Automobile Association before being rolled out nationally from early next year.

Once implemented, keys2drive will:

  •  Provide learner drivers and a parent or mentor with a free professional driving lesson from an accredited instructor;
  •  Support parents and mentors with instructional material and practical guidance on how to provide effective supervision and training to a learner driver;
  •  Establish an interactive website which will offer short instructional videos, guides for handling various road terrains and weather conditions, and the location of their nearest accredited driving instructor; and
  • Deliver the country’s first ever national accreditation scheme for driving instructors.

A young person is at far greater risk of being involved in a fatal car accident than other drivers. Nearly a third of people killed on Australian roads are aged 16 to 25 – yet they represent only 15 per cent of the population.

In fact, young people go from being one of the safest drivers on the road when on their L plates to being one of the most likely to have a car crash the moment they get their P plates.

We must and will do more to prevent these tragedies.

keys2drive is an important new road safety initiative. It will provide extra incentive for novice drivers to get more on-the-road experience and will assist those supervising them – usually their parents – to become better informed and more confident in undertaking this important role.

The Rudd Labor Government is committed to making our roads safer for all drivers. keys2drive is a practical way of equipping young people with the skills they need for a lifetime of safer driving.