April 22, 2009 | Eastern Driving School

Automatic Licences requests high advises Driving School

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In the past twelve to eighteen months there has been a very large trend to obtaining automatic licences.In my opinion people are taking the easiest and quickest route.Having said that the requirement for both licences, if the applicant is under 21 years of age is the log book containing proof of 120 hour of practice.
The automatic licence trend creates a problem for some when they find that a potential job needs a manual licence.
This in turn if the job applicant is on a probationary licence requires a manual driving test to be able to meet the employment criteria.
The quickest is not always the best but we do have the choice

120 HOURS: IS THE MESSAGE GETTING THROUGH?

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120 HOURS: IS THE MESSAGE GETTING THROUGH?
LEARNER DRIVERS AND DRIVING PRACTICE
Probationary drivers are over-represented in crashes, particularly in their first year of solo
driving. Studies have shown that a minimum of 120 hours supervised driving practice as
a learner is associated with reduced risk of crashing in the first year of solo driving.
VicRoads, TAC and other bodies have implemented programs to encourage and facilitate
the accumulation of 120 hours of supervised driving practice. Beginning in 1999,
VicRoads and TAC commissioned a series of surveys to evaluate the success of these
programs. Each survey samples a cross-section of learner and newly licenced drivers at
different stages of the learner permit period. Responses are used to estimate learner
drivers’ hours of supervised driving practice and professional lessons. The results of the
2004 survey stated that estimated total of hours of supervised driving has risen
substantially since the first survey, and this paper demonstrates where the increases
have occurred as well as charting the variety of driving experience accumulated.
Respondents’ exposure to and perceived helpfulness of the programs is assessed.
Hindrances to practice, attitudes towards supervised practice, and respondents’ thoughts
on what would encourage more practice are also reported.
Introduction
Probationary drivers are over-represented in crashes, particularly in their first year of solo
driving (VicRoads 2006). For more than three decades, the problem of inexperience has been
recognised as a primary contributing factor to crash involvement for novice drivers (see for
example: Pelz & Schuman 1971, Spolander 1983, Levy 1990, Drummond et al. 1993, Cavallo &
Triggs 1996 [cited in Gregersen 2000]).
Studies have shown that a minimum of 120 hours supervised driving practice as a learner is
associated with a 30% reduction in risk of crashing in the first two years of solo driving
(Gregersen 2000). VicRoads, TAC and RACV have implemented programs to encourage and
facilitate the accumulation of 120 hours of supervised driving practice. These include:
• VicRoads’ Keys Please seminars
• VicRoads’ Getting There: from Ls to Ps booklet
• VicRoads’ L Site website
• VicRoads’ Learners Log webpage
• TAC HELP Information Pack
• TAC Drive Smart CD ROM
• RACV Parent Plus driving school program.
TAC has also implemented advertising campaigns on television, radio, print media and roadside
billboards emphasising the importance of 120 hours of supervised practice.
Commencing in 1999, VicRoads and TAC commissioned a series of surveys to evaluate how
successful these programs have been in increasing the number of hours that learner drivers
spend in supervised driving practice. The surveys were conducted in 1999, 2000, 2004 and
2005. ARRB has published reports for the surveys conducted up to 2004 (see Catchpole &
Stephenson 2001, Catchpole & Coutts 2002, Catchpole & Pyta 2005). This paper reports on the
changes in the number of hours of supervised practice accumulated by learner drivers observed
in the 2004 survey. Respondents’ exposure to and perceived helpfulness of the programs are
assessed. Hindrances to practice, attitudes towards supervised practice, and respondents’
thoughts on what would encourage more practice are also reported.
Method
Sample
The sample consisted of 1322 learner permit holders and 209 newly licenced drivers. The
sample of current learner permit holders was stratified by length of time holding the learner
permit. Both the samples of current learner permit holders and newly licenced drivers were
stratified by region, sex and age when the learner permit was acquired.
There are naturally fewer learners living outside of Melbourne and fewer learners in the first two
stages of the learner permit period. To obtain reliable estimates of driving experience for these
groups, they were deliberately over-sampled. The survey response data was weighted prior to
analysis to account for this over-sampling and to ensure the results were representative of all
Victorian learner permit holders.
Design
The study is cross-sectional as it samples at one point in time a cross-section of learner drivers
during four ‘stages’ of the learner permit period. The stages are defined as:
Stage 1: 1-91 days after obtaining a learner permit (first 3 months)
Stage 2: 92-212 days after obtaining a learner permit (4th to 7th months)
Stage 3: 213-1461 days after obtaining a learner permit (balance of the first 4 years)
Final stage: last 28 days before acquiring a probationary licence.
Survey Procedure
Roy Morgan Research recruited and interviewed respondents for the surveys. VicRoads
supplied Roy Morgan with quotas based on the desired stratified sample and the name and
address of 16,496 current learner permit holders and 2782 newly licenced drivers. The surveys
were conducted using Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing.
Analysis procedure
The average amount of driving experience accumulated by drivers over the whole learner permit
period was calculated by:
1. Identifying people in stages 1 to 3 who might actually be in the final stage of the learner
permit period and then multiplying their weighting factor by 0.4081 to reduce their
influence (because these people spend more time practising per week).
2. Multiplying the average amount of driving per week during each stage by the average
amount of time spent in that stage to give an estimate of the amount of driving experience
accumulated in each stage.
3. Negating the bias which is present for stage 3 (people who spend less time in stage 3
also tend to do more driving per week in stage 3) by multiplying the estimated amount of
experience by a correction factor of 0.8982.
1 This weight was also calculated from data in the 1999 survey when the date of licence acquisition was available.
4. Adding together the estimates of the amount of driving experience accumulated in each
stage to give an estimate of the total accumulated hours of driving experience over the
whole learner permit period.
Results
Time holding a learner permit
The average time holding a learner permit was 82.7 weeks in 1999 and 83.9 weeks in 2000. In
2004, learner drivers held their learners permit for an average of 86.3 weeks before graduating
to a probationary licence.
Professional driving lessons
Time spent in professional driving lessons is generally low in the first three stages. Most
learners in this group reported not having had a lesson in the last four weeks, and the average
time spent in lessons for this group (including learners who had no lessons) was 4 to 7 minutes
per week. The average increases to 58 minutes per week in the last four weeks before they
attempt their licence test. On average:
• the total time spent in professional lessons over the whole learner permit period was 10.4
hours, a drop of 5% since the 2000 survey
• females spent more time in professional lessons than males
• learners from Melbourne spent more time in professional lessons than learners from the
rest of Victoria.
The latter two figures did not differ significantly between the 2000 and 2004 surveys.
Supervised driving practice
Time spent in supervised practice averaged 52 to 64 minutes per week in the first three stages,
increasing to 160 minutes per week in the final stage. In addition, 83-90% of learners reported
having undertaken supervised practice in the last week. On average:
• the total time spent in supervised practice over the whole learner permit period was 83.6
hours, an increase of 11% from the 2000 survey
• males spent more time in supervised practice per week than females in the first three
stages
• learners from Melbourne spent less time in supervised practice during the first three
stages but more time than country Victorians in the final stage.
Total driving experience
The total supervised driving experience over the whole learner permit period (comprising
professional lessons and supervised driving practice) averaged 94.1 hours, an increase of 9.5%
since 2000. On average, total driving time was:
• lower for females (82.7 hours) than for males (106.2 hours)
• lower for Melbourne learners (90.1 hours) than for residents of provincial centres (96.8
hours) and the rest of Victoria (112.0 hours)
• substantially higher for learners who acquired their permit at age 16 (124.8 hours) versus
at age 17 (71.0 hours) versus at age 18 to 20 (57.5 hours).
2 This correction factor was calculated for the 1999 survey when VicRoads was able to supply information about the
date of licence acquisition. From 2000 onwards, VicRoads was unable to supply this information, and so the correction
factor calculated in 1999 has been applied to subsequent years’ data.
Proportionately, experience was gained through 11% professional lessons and 89% supervised
practice. The proportion of experience gained through professional lessons was higher for:
• females than males
• learners from Melbourne than learners from the rest of Victoria
• learners who acquired their permit at age 17 or 18 to 20 years than those who acquired
the permit at 16.
Variety of driving conditions experienced
Compared with the 2000 survey, the variety of driving conditions that learner drivers were
exposed to increased by a statistically significant 25% in stage 3 (although the changes in the
other stages were smaller and not significant). Country Victorians generally gained greater
variety of experience than Melbourne learners and male learners generally gained greater
variety of experience than female learners in the first three stages.
Recognising the importance of supervised experience
When asked how many hours of experience they believed a learner needs to accumulate before
attempting the probationary licence test, 33-45% answered in the 101-150 hour range. Around
half of all learners reported that they kept a record of their driving practice, and there were
significant increases since 2000 in the number of learners keeping record of their driving
practice across three of the four stages.
Programs to increase learner driver experience
The programs are listed in order of greatest audience exposure:
• VicRoads’ Getting There: from Ls to Ps booklet
– information for supervising drivers and learners regarding safely and effectively
managing the process of learning to drive
– 73-81% of respondents received the booklet
– considered helpful by 59-70% of those who received it, but 15-20% said they had not
read it
• TAC HELP Information Pack
– information for supervising drivers and learners regarding safely and effectively
managing the process of learning to drive
– 45-67% of respondents had received the pack
– 42-64% of those found it helpful
• VicRoads’ Keys Please seminars
– dissemination of information to supervising drivers and learners regarding safely and
effectively managing the process of learning to drive
– 24% of respondents had attended by stage 3
– considered helpful by 87-100% of those who attended
• VicRoads’ L Site website
– interactive quizzes prompting learners to think about how their driving is progressing
and practical advice about how to improve their driving
– 11-25% of respondents had visited the website
– 71-83% of those who visited the site found it helpful
• TAC Drive Smart CD ROM
– interactive driving scenarios and quizzes designed to help learners make safe
judgements and improve real-world driving skill
– 9-25% % of respondents had used the CD ROM program
– 66-81% of those found it helpful
• TAC Learners Log webpage
– interactive website allowing learners to keep record of the hours and variety of
supervised practice they do
– 1-5% of respondents had visited the website
– 72-87% of those who visited the site found it helpful
• RACV Parent Plus driving school program
– a learner who has professional lessons with RACV DriveSchool can receive one lesson
free of charge if they bring a parent along for their lesson
– 0-3% of learners had taken part in the program.
Hindrances to practice
Most respondents (68%) reported that there was nothing limiting their involvement in
professional lessons, although a moderate proportion reported that lessons were too expensive
(10%) or that they didn’t have time for lessons (13%).
Similarly, most respondents (67%) reported that there was nothing limiting their involvement in
supervised practice; although a moderate number stated that they were too busy (18%).
Respondents who were living with at least one parent were much more likely to obtain the
learner permit at age 16, to report that their usual supervisor is a parent and to have two or
more cars and two or more supervisors available for practice. They also averaged more hours
practising per week, and were less likely to report hindrances to practice.
Attitudes towards supervised practice
When asked what would reduce the number of probationary driver crashes, 21-34% of
respondents recognised more driving practice as learners as an important protective factor.
Encouraging more supervised practice
When asked what would encourage learners to do more supervised practice, one third were
unable to answer, and the most popular responses were to allow more time and more access to
a car.
Discussion
There were some encouraging trends revealed in the 2004 survey. A moderate increase in
hours of driving experience prior to attempting the probationary licence test was observed. This
increase was the result of increases in the average time for which the learner permit is held and
increases in the average time spent practising per week in stage three. The variety of driving
conditions experienced also increased significantly.
Exposure to the programs intended to encourage and facilitate new drivers to accumulate their
120 hours of supervised driving practice was good. Most respondents were aware of at least
one of the programs, and most found them useful. Although these results are encouraging,
causation cannot be definitively attributed to them, as we cannot control for other potential
influencing factors.
There are some methodological issues to allow for when considering these results. Firstly, the
sampling method was changed in 2004 to be stratified on the respondent’s age when they
obtained their learners permit, where previously it had been stratified on the respondent’s age at
the time of the survey. This change occurred because results from the 1999 and 2000 surveys
revealed that the total driving experience accumulated by learner permit holders is closely
related to their age at the time of obtaining the learners permit.
Some systematic sampling bias may also have occurred due to potential respondents not being
available when the interviewers attempted to call. This rate was higher for newly licenced
drivers than learners. In future surveys, a higher call back rate will be stipulated for newly
licenced drivers.
This survey used a cross-sectional method to estimate total driving experience over the whole
learner permit period. Another method is simply to ask newly licenced drivers to estimate their
total driving experience. When these two methods were compared, the results showed that the
latter method tended to overestimate total driving experience by about 39% when compared
with the cross-sectional method. Therefore, simply asking newly licenced drivers to recall their
total practice is not a reliable method of gauging the total supervised driving experience
accumulated. It is possible that this over-estimate is influenced by a desire on the part of newly
licenced drivers to meet the ideal 120 hours of practice which is prominent in TAC advertising.
Importantly, the surveys reveal potential target audiences who would benefit most from
increased attention in future programs. These include:
• learners who do not get the learner permit until age 17 or older
• learners not living with a parent
• females
• learners living in Melbourne.
References
Catchpole, J and Coutts, M 2002, Continued monitoring of driving experience among learner
drivers: 1999-2000, Research Report ARR 357, ARRB Transport Research, Vermont South Vic.
Catchpole, J and Pyta, V 2004, Learner driver experience monitoring 2004, Research Report
365, ARRB Group, Vermont South Vic.
Catchpole, J and Stephenson, W 2001, Monitoring driving experience among learner drivers,
Research Report ARR 355, ARRB Transport Research, Vermont South, Vic.
Gregersen, NP 2000, ‘Sixteen years age limit for learner drivers in Sweden – an evaluation of
safety effects’, Accident Analysis & Prevention 32(1) pp.25-35.
VicRoads 2006, Young Driver Safety and Graduated Licensing Program: Discussion Paper,
viewed 10 August 2006
<http://www.arrivealive.vic.gov.au/downloads/Youngdriver_discussion/YDS_v10_web.pdf>,
VicRoads, Kew, Victoria.

Source: Victoria Pyta, ARRB Group, victoria.pyta@arrb.com.au
And
John Catchpole, ARRB Group, john.catchpole@arrb.com.au

Guide for Learners – Driving Schools

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Please click here to read full article and open brochure.

Learners Kit - Driving School

Source: VIC ROADS

Speeding. What a sensation!! Driving School Warns

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It may seem like fun but it is downright dangerous. The faster you travel the more likely
it is that you will be involved in a car crash, and the faster you go, the harder you hit.
The effects of speeding and being involved in a car crash can change your life forever.

Think about this:
Choose your speed and you
choose your consequences.
In a 60 km/h zone, travelling at:
• 65 km/h, you are twice as likely to
have a serious crash
• 70 km/h, you are four times as likely
to have a serious crash
• 75 km/h, you are 10 times as likely
to have a serious crash
• 80 km/h, you are 32 times as likely
to have a serious crash
than if you drive at 60 km/h.

In rural out of town areas, travelling just 10 km/h faster than the average speed of other traffic, you are twice as likely to have a serious crash. Travelling a bit slower than other traffic on the highway actually reduces the hances that you will have a serious crash.

 

Dry conditions:
The road is dry, you have a modern vehicle with good
brakes and tyres. A child runs onto the road 45 m ahead
of you while you are travelling in a 60 km/h zone.
You brake hard. Will you stop in time?
Wet conditions:
The road is wet, you have a modern vehicle with good
brakes and tyres. A child runs onto the road 45 m ahead
of you while you are travelling in a 60 km/h zone.
You brake hard. Will you stop in time?
• If you were driving just 5 km/h over the speed limit, you won’t
have time to stop and you will hit the child at over 30 km/h.

Wet conditions:
The road is wet, you have a modern vehicle with good
brakes and tyres. A child runs onto the road 45 m ahead
of you while you are travelling in a 60 km/h zone.
You brake hard. Will you stop in time?
• If you were driving just 5 km/h over the speed limit, you won’t
have time to stop and you will hit the child at over 30 km/h.
• In wet conditions, it is much safer to drive below the speed limit. If
a child steps onto the road 45 m ahead, you will have to be
driving under the speed limit to stop in time.

The faster you go, the less time
you have to see hazards,
assess the risk and respond.
Even though you may be a
capable driver, extra speed
always means it takes longer
for the vehicle to stop.
In wet conditions you should
allow much more distance to
stop than on a dry road.

The more distance you keep
from other vehicles on the
road, the better your chances
are of avoiding a crash.
All drivers make mistakes at
times. If you stay at least three
seconds behind the vehicle in
front, you will have time to
react to unexpected situations.
You will also be a lot more
visible to oncoming drivers and
better positioned to see any
vehicles ahead of the one in
front of you.

Do you feel the pressure
to go fast?
Don’t worry if others expect you
to go fast. You are in control of
the car and ultimately you are
the one to face the
consequences of speeding.
Can you afford the costs of
speeding (points and licence
loss, $$s and injury)?
Even if you don’t crash or get
fined, higher speeds and hard
acceleration will cost you extra
money every time you fill your
petrol tank.

Next time you see a person
speeding in and out of traffic,
check out where they are at the
next change of lights or
intersection. Chances are they
are beside you. Speeding can
really only save you a few
seconds or minutes in a total
journey – so it’s not worth the
risk.
Annoyed that someone has
pushed into the gap that you
have left between you and the
next car? Just make another
gap. It’s cheaper and less
hassle than crashing into their
car!

Speeding in an urban area is as dangerous as driving with an
illegal blood alcohol concentration. In a 60 km/h zone, even
travelling at 5 km/h above the limit increases your chances of
having a serious crash as much as driving with a blood alcohol
concentration of 0.05.

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading
cause of death among young
Australians aged 16–25 years.
Fact:
The risk of being involved
in a fatal or serious crash
is much higher for young
drivers when there are
passengers – particularly
when the passengers are
around the same age and
when there is more than
one.

Why is this so?
Having your friends in the car
can:
• Distract you when you have
not fully mastered or
automated your driving
skills.
• Encourage riskier driving
behaviours – such as
driving after drinking
alcohol, speeding, swerving,
and following too close.
• Tempt you to show off your
driving skills.

Here are some tips:
• It isn’t easy to tell your friends that you
won’t give them all a lift home from a
party – so practise some believable
excuses before the end of the night.
‘Mum only loaned the car to me on
condition that I come straight home.’
• Leave the car at home and share a taxi
with your friends.
• If you want to take a friend or friends,
keep the number to a minimum. The
more passengers you have, the riskier
the trip becomes.
• When offering friends a lift, remember
that you are the driver and in control of
the car. Take them on the condition that
they are helpful rather than distracting.
Ask them to: help out with directions;
not fiddle with knobs and dials; not to
point out things unrelated to the driving
task (e.g. good looking pedestrians!!).
• If your friend is driving, allow them to
concentrate on the driving – try to help
by spotting hazards in and around the
road.

During driving practice
• For the first 10 hours of supervised
practice, keep the radio off and
passengers either out of the car or
down to a minimum, and silent.
• As you become more confident and
capable as a learner driver, start
allowing passengers and other
distractions into the car. But be
assertive and ask for silence when
things get busy or difficult.
After you get your Ps
• Avoid taking passengers for the first
few unsupervised drives. You will be
surprised how much more challenging
driving is on your own than when your
supervisor was taking up some of the
workload.
• Be in control of every trip you make –
resist the temptation to show off your
driving skills to your friends or other
road users.

For the complete article please read here: ATSB