For many young people getting their drivers licence is an important ‘rite of passage’. There are, however, many challenges when learning to drive and due to their inexperience, young drivers face a higher risk of danger. Despite making up only about 15% of all licence holders, Australian young drivers represent almost a quarter of annual road fatalities.
One proven way of reducing the risks is a graduated licensing scheme (GLS). Most states and territories include a learner permit period, followed by a provisional period (usually in two stages), before a full licence can be gained. The rules and restrictions for each of these stages, however, can vary across jurisdictions.
DARTA has collected some of the key information on the restrictions for young drivers by jurisdiction, including blood alcohol limits, number of passengers, mobile phone use and length of licence.
Random breath testing (RBT) was introduced across Australia during the 1980s. Anyone driving a vehicle on a public road or sitting in the driver’s seat or attempting to drive a vehicle can be asked to undergo a breath test.
Roadside drug testing (RDT) (or mobile drug testing (MDT) as it is called in NSW) operates alongside RBT and police across all states and territories have the power to test drivers they believe may be under the influence of illegal or prescription drugs.