Testers to put their foot down on speeding
THE Rose City has been chosen as one of seven different locations across Queensland to pilot a new practical driving test, which includes zero tolerance on speeding during an exam.
Part of the driver license reforms announced by the State Government last year, the package is the first change to Q-SAFE driver tests in 15 years.
The new test aims to give more significance to speeding, maintaining a safe distance, merging at higher speeds and turning across oncoming traffic and a lower emphasis on skills like reverse parking.
After six bingles within the Warwick area in just a week, the changes may be very welcome for the town.
"Three of the incidents that occurred over the past week have resulted in injuries, most of these were caused by a failure to indicate or a lack of attention to the vehicle ahead," Warwick Police Acting Senior Sergent Lisa Self said.
Despite the controversy about the zero tolerance on speeding during the exam, local A G Licensing instructor and secretary of the Warwick and District Road Safety Group, Andrew Gale, said he was pleased to see the changes.
"I think it's a great idea they have shifted focus; collision avoidance is all about what's happening in front of you," he said.
"People that have commented on the zero tolerance for speeding have said the driver will be focused on their speed and not the road.
"But to drive we are meant to learn skills to concentrate on multiple things rather than focus on one thing."
Mr Gale sees recognition and decision making the key elements in safe driving.
"We teach people how to drive safely; that's what I focus on doing, passing the test comes second," he said.
"People put way to much focus on reverse parking and not on safely merging."
The experienced instructor said he backed the changes 100%, as does Minister for Transport Scott Emerson.
"Speeding is a significant contributing factor in crashes among younger drivers and, just like it is against the law to speed above the designated limit, it has been strictly applied to pilot test candidates," Mr Emerson said.
After the practical examination, drivers will be asked to fill out a survey of their experience to assist in future changes.
The pilot will be carried out until July 25 this year.
Where is the pilot happening?
- Warwick customer service centre
- Stanthorpe QGAP
- Clifton and Millmerran police stations.
- Greenslopes customer service centre (except for Saturday testing)
- Strathpine customer service centre (except for Saturday testing)
- Cloncurry customer service centre