Getting a Driver’s Licence can be one of the most challenging and exciting events in a teenager’s life. Just the idea of being able to get into a car and drive anywhere, anytime, can be exhilarating. However the ability to drive also brings with it fairly onerous responsibilities, and unfortunately many first time drivers only discover this when they’ve had an accident or caused damage to another vehicle.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, year after year, the leading cause of death among 15 to 24 year olds is transport accidents. The statistics are particularly bad for first time or novice drivers, with fatalities or serious injuries occurring almost four times more regularly in young drivers then the rest of the population.
These are scary figures. However what’s even scarier is that most novice drivers do not seem to be aware of the dangerous nature of driving and the serious responsibilities that come with getting your licence. A study from the NRMA in NSW of driving instructors and their students, for example, found that almost half of the learner drivers underestimated their speed while driving, but only around twenty per cent of males and ten per cent of females thought that they needed more instruction in speed limits and observing the relevant laws. This is not good news considering that speeding, especially combined with factors like distraction, mobile phone use, alcohol and drugs, is the leading cause of vehicle accidents among young people.
The study concluded that learner drivers can be too overconfident when it came to issues such as speeding. It has been suggested that one reason for this overconfidence is some students only receive proper professional driving instruction when they’re close to booking in for their VORT driving test. This means that they have probably received the bulk of their driver instruction from friends or family members, with perhaps only patchy or incomplete learning in safe driving techniques. As young people learn from mostly what they see around them, any relaxation of the rules (for example, if mum or dad answers their mobile phone whilst driving, or fails to check their blind spot before changing lanes) will stay with them and become part of their normal driving technique.
Professionally accredited and qualified instructors will be able to systematically teach learner drivers to not only drive correctly and follow the road rules, but become a safer, more responsible driver as well. If you’re looking for Driving Lessons in Burnside and surrounding suburbs, look for instructors who specifically teach safe driving skills, or even consider defensive driving lessons as a way to prepare properly for the fun but serious world out on the roads.