This month’s Traffic Focus from ACT Policing is on L and P plate drivers on Canberra roads.
While many young drivers do the right thing, ACT Policing still noted the inability to identify and respond to hazards, inexperience, over-confidence, and deliberate risk-taking as risks for the demographic.
Officer in Charge of Road Policing, Detective Acting Superintendent Marcus Boorman, said teaching young drivers the right way to drive is crucial.
“Parents have a massive role to play in teaching their children about the right way to behave behind the wheel,” he said.
“Road safety is everyone’s responsibility, whether you’ve been driving for one month or 20 years.
“Younger drivers often have very little experience with things like driver fatigue, driving at night and carrying passengers, so it’s important to expose them to a wide range of driving scenarios and conditions while they’re learning.”
Speed has been labelled as the biggest issue, with 436 Traffic Infringement Notices being issued to P plate drivers this year and 22 of those recorded at travelling more than 45km/h over the speed limit.
In addition, 31 P plate drivers have been issued infringements for improper use of a motor vehicle, 89 for not displaying P plates and 50 for using their mobile phone when driving.
Detective Boorman said common sense was key for young drivers.
“For P platers taking their first steps as an unsupervised driver, the best thing to do is use common sense when behind the wheel,” he said.
“Be aware of and stay focused on the road and your surroundings, as well as other cars on the road, and always drive to the conditions.
“Make sure you and your passengers are wearing a seatbelt and stay off your mobile phone.”
Drivers are again reminded by ACT Policing not to drink and drive.
“I know young people want to have fun with their friends, but please also remember that alcohol and driving are a dangerous combination,” Detective Boorman said.
“If you’re driving, don’t drink – the alcohol limit for L and P plate drivers is 0.00. If you are drinking, don’t drive. I can’t be any clearer than that.”