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  • 1. Road to Solo Driving LEARNING TO DRIVE • DRIVING TO LEARN L P P
  • 2. The Road to Solo Driving handbook This work is the copyright of VicRoads. Published by VicRoads Apart from uses permitted under the Copyright Act is designed to help you understand 60 Denmark Street, Kew, Victoria 3101 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process the road rules, responsibilities and ©Roads Corporation, Victoria, without written permission from VicRoads. prepare you for the challenges of Australia 2000 driving. You will need to read and Road laws and legal requirements understand the Road to Solo First published 2000 Road laws change from time to time. Tests may Driving thoroughly before sitting Crown© Copyright 2000 change accordingly. It is your responsibility to for your learner permit test. Reprinted with amendments ensure that you have the most recent edition of June 2008. When you receive your learner this handbook and any update sheets. If you permit you will be given the are in doubt, check with any of the VicRoads National Library of Australia Customer Service Centres listed on the inside Learner Kit containing the two cataloguing-in-publication data: back cover. booklets Guide for Learners with Roads Corporation. the Learner Log Book, and the Road to Solo Driving: This handbook sets out various legal requirements Guide for Supervising Drivers. The Learning to drive – driving to learn for drivers. These are intended as a guide only. Guide for Learners will help you Includes index. They do not purport to set out in full all of the make the most of your practice ISBN 0 7311 9000 9 requirements of the law. sessions, get the essential driving 1. Automobile driver education – For a complete knowledge of the road law, you experience you need, and keep Victoria – Handbooks, manuals, etc. should consult the appropriate Acts and Regulations. 2. Traffic regulations – track of your progress as you work Remember that ignorance of what the law says on a Victoria – Handbooks, manuals, etc. towards your Ps. It includes the particular subject will not be regarded as an excuse 3. Traffic safety – Victoria – Learner Log Book you must use to by the Courts. Handbooks, manuals, etc. show you have had enough driving Almost everything in this handbook applies to car I. Roads Corporation (Vic) practice to get a licence. It will drivers. Motorcycle riders should refer to the Victorian help you structure your minimum 343.9450946 Rider handbook for further information. Much of the 120 hours of driving if you are information also applies to pedal cyclists. The word Several organisations have contributed under 21 years of age. ‘driver’ is generally used to cover the different road to the preparation of this handbook, and Give the Guide for Supervising users and to simplify the language. It does not mean their help is gratefully acknowledged. Drivers booklet to your supervising that one group is more important than the other. driver.
  • 4. List of contents 2 Learning to drive 33 • Why read this handbook 5 • How do you learn to drive? 35 • How to use this handbook 6 • Some facts about new solo drivers 35 Ten steps to getting your licence • 7 • Practice is the best way 36 • The Graduated Licensing System 22 • Your supervising driver is there to help 39 • Put variety into your driving practice 41 • Traps along the road to solo driving 44 • Checking your progress 46 3 1 Managing risk The challenges of driving 51 27 • Alcohol and drugs • Facing the real challenges of driving 54 27 • Mobile phones • Some facts about driving 54 28 • Speed • How complicated is driving? 55 29 • Fatigue 55 • Seat belts 57 • Vehicle maintenance 57 • Managing driving risk 58 • Your crash risk as a solo driver 59 • Reducing your risk of a crash 60
  • 5. 4 – Sharing the road with buses 132 Rules and responsibilities 65 – Sharing the road with police • Alcohol and emergency vehicles 68 132 • Drugs, medicine and driving – Sharing the road with trucks 72 • The law about seat belts and other heavy vehicles 74 133 • Speed limits – Sharing the road with animals 76 135 • Road signs – Railway level crossings 80 136 • Road markings • Parking 86 138 • Traffic controls at intersections • Penalties 93 146 • Give Way rules • Legal responsibilities 95 149 • Turning • Crash responsibilities 106 151 • Freeways • First aid after a crash 114 152 • Driving safely in tunnels • Test yourself questions 115 158 • Sharing the road safely 116 – Co-operative driving 116 – Keeping your cool when driving 117 – Sharing the road with other motorists 118 – Sharing the road with pedestrians 123 – Sharing the road with cyclists and motorcyclists 127 • Resources to help you 161 – Sharing the road with trams 129 • Index 164
  • 6. You will need to study this handbook before sitting Road to Solo Driving is an innovative handbook the learner permit and probationary licence tests. for new drivers. Once you have passed the learner test, you will be As new drivers are three times more likely to be given the Guide for Learners with the Learner Log involved in casualty crashes than more experienced Book and the Guide for Supervising Drivers. This drivers, this handbook will help you to become a forms the Learner Kit – a complete package for safe driver and not a road toll statistic. learner drivers. Road safety research has found that a major Use the handbook as you learn to drive. It will reason for new drivers being over involved in help support the partnership between you, your crashes is that they have not had a sufficient supervisor and your driving instructor. range of supervised driving experiences to be able The Victorian Government is committed to to anticipate driving situations safely. improving road safety. Road to Solo Driving is As a result when learners under 21 years of age one of the important initiatives which will help when they take their probationary licence test they achieve this goal. are required to produce a Learner Log book to Follow the advice in the Learner Kit, and you show they have completed a minimum of 120 hours will be better prepared for safe solo driving in of supervised driving practice, including at least 10 the future. hours of driving at night. 4
  • 7. Why read this handbook? Welcome to Road to Solo Driving! Age requirements, driver licences, the Graduated Licensing System, keeping a Learner Log Book, As you will find out, you need obligations, learner permits, P plates, demerit years of experience – not a few points, road rules, tests, Blood Alcohol Concentration: as a first-time driver, the ‘system’ days, weeks or months – to learn to can be a bit confusing. drive safely. It’s a long road and As you read Road to Solo Driving, things will there are no shortcuts. become clearer. The aim of this handbook is to This handbook is for all intending drivers and will help you: assist you if you are going for a learner permit, a • prepare for the challenges of driving probationary licence, or converting an interstate or overseas licence to a Victorian licence. • find out how you learn to drive You are the one in charge of your driving, but • manage and reduce your risks as a driver many people are there to help you along the way. • understand the rules and responsibilities You will need their help because the best way to of driving. learn to drive is with lots of practice. Every new driver faces the same challenges and has to meet However, reading a handbook won’t make you a them in the same way by practising driving better driver. The most important thing is how you frequently and making sure the practice has choose to use the information in it. We show you more variety. the way, but in the end it’s up to you! 5
  • 8. How to use this handbook This handbook is divided into four sections. Definition box. Bold words highlighted in Each is colour coded with a vertical band on dark green are followed by a box containing the outside edge of each page. the definition. The preliminary pages detail the ten steps to getting your licence and becoming a driver. Bold words highlighted in DARK GREEN, PART 1 looks at the challenges facing new are followed by a box containing the solo drivers. definition. PART 2 covers the process of learning to drive and the importance of supervised driving practice. Hot tip. Next to this icon the text appears PART 3 looks at the risks of driving and strategies highlighted in red to give a suggestion to for new solo drivers to manage these risks. help you along the way. HOT TIP PART 4 details road rules and responsibilities. A number of devices have been used to make it Fact file. The text in a yellow box is an easier for you to read and use this handbook. important fact you should note. These include: Road law. When there is a statement of road law, the word ‘must’ appears in bold type. 6
  • 9. Ten steps to getting your licence Get your copy of Road to Solo Driving 1 Book your learner permit test 2 Pass your learner permit test 3 Pay for and receive your learner permit 4 Start learning to drive and driving to learn 5 Book your probationary licence test 6 Pass your probationary licence test 7 Pay for and receive your probationary licence 8 Continue learning to drive and driving to learn 9 Receive your 10 full driver licence and keep learning! 7
  • 10. Ten steps to getting your licence STEP 1 STEP 2 Get your copy of Book your Road to Solo Driving learner permit test Make sure you have the latest edition of You must have turned 16 before you can be tested. this handbook and take some time to read You can book your learner permit test by phone or it thoroughly. in person. Once you are familiar with the information in the handbook and know the road rules, you are ready You will be asked for your personal details such to be tested for your learner permit. as your full name, date of birth, address and phone number. You will also be asked when and where you would like to be tested. Booking and test fees apply and must be paid at the time of booking. Language options To book by phone (Please have your credit card ready) When you go for your learner permit test or your probationary licence test, you can You will need to phone: choose to do the road law questions and the • 13 1171 Victorian calls Hazard Perception Test on the computer in any of the 20 languages available (for a full • +61 3 9854 2666 Overseas calls list, see page 21). • 1300 652 321 if you have impaired hearing or speech, and use a Telephone Typewriter (TTY). 8
  • 11. You will be given an appointment number which you should write down so you can tell it to the VicRoads officer who tests you. To book in person Go to any of the VicRoads Customer Service Centres listed on the inside back cover of this handbook. Note: If you cannot keep your appointment, you must give VicRoads 24 hours notice to cancel your test. Otherwise fees will not be refunded unless you produce a medical certificate or other supporting evidence. If you transfer your appointment, an additional appointment fee will apply. 9
  • 12. Ten steps to getting your licence How will you be tested? STEP 3 Pass your • You will read an eyesight chart to test learner permit test your vision. • You will do a computerised, multiple-choice test When you go to be tested, bring: based on this handbook to test your knowledge of road law and road safety. • your appointment number A sample computer test is available on the • evidence of identity and age, as set out VicRoads website at on page 11 You can practise the full version of the learner • payment for your 10 year learner permit if you permit test online to help you familiarise yourself pass the test. with the structure and layout of the test. If you have poor vision you are required to bring The learner permit practice test can also be an eyesight certificate from an optometrist or printed. opthalmologist (eye doctor). If you have a disability or illness that may affect your driving, you will need to bring a medical report from your doctor stating that you are medically fit to drive. If you are unsure or would like advice, contact VicRoads for further information. Once you hold a learner permit, you must tell VicRoads if you develop any medical condition that might affect your driving. 10
  • 13. This includes gas, telephone and electricity bills Evidence of Identity up to one year old, or Medicare, student identity Before you sit for your learner permit or your and credit or account cards with banks, building probationary licence you must prove who you societies and credit unions; and are and that you live in Victoria by taking certain 3 Evidence of Victorian residence if this has not documents to the VicRoads Customer Service been shown on either the primary or secondary Centre. evidence documents provided. If documentary Only original documents are acceptable – evidence cannot be provided, a referee statement photocopies of documents, certified or otherwise, signed by a Victorian driver licence holder who are unacceptable. has known you for at least one year may be accepted. The statement must include the name Documents needed for evidence of identity and address of both the referee and the applicant. The list of acceptable documents is available One document must contain your signature. from any VicRoads Customer Service Centre If your signature does not appear on any of the or from the VicRoads website: documents provided, you will need to present a letter from your employer, school principal or You must provide: any person authorised to witness a statutory declaration, witnessing your signature. 1 A ‘primary evidence’ document such as an Australian photo driver licence/learner permit, If there is a difference in names between the birth certificate, a passport (not expired by more primary and secondary evidence documents you than two years) or an Australian naturalisation or will need to provide additional documents citizenship document; and such as a marriage certificate issued by the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages in 2 A ‘secondary evidence’ document to confirm the Australia or a Change of Name Registration. current use of your name in the community. 11
  • 14. Ten steps to getting your licence The Declaration of Completion in the Learner Log STEP 4 Book must also be signed by both the applicant and Pay for and receive the supervising driver. The List of Supervising Drivers must also be completed by all supervising your learner permit drivers, including driving instructors. You will then Once you have passed the test, you will: be given your learner permit. Those aged 21 years or over are encouraged to use the Learner Log • pay for your learner permit, which is valid for Book, but do not need to present it when they go 10 years for their probationary licence. • have your photo taken for your learner permit • be given a Learner Kit containing the Guide for STEP 5 Learners with the Learner Log Book, and the Start learning to drive Guide for Supervising Drivers. The Guide for and driving to learn Supervising Drivers provides important information and tips for supervising drivers. When you have your learner permit, it is important you get as much varied and supervised practice as If you are under 21 years of age you must complete possible. If you are under 21 years of age when a minimum of 120 hours supervised driving you apply for your probationary licence you must experience including 10 hours of driving at night. keep the Learner Log Book and get a minimum of You must bring the completed Learner Log Book 120 hours of supervised driving experience with you when you go for your probationary including at least 10 hours at night. licence. This will be checked before you take the To help you do this you should: practical drive test to make sure entries are complete and correct, with all necessary details • keep reading this handbook completed, including licence details and signatures • read the Guide for Learners, and of supervising drivers. encourage your supervising driver(s) to read the Guide for Supervising Drivers 12
  • 15. • record and monitor your driving practice by STEP 6 recording the details in the Learner Log Book. Book your When you are learning to drive, you must: probationary licence test • have an accompanying driver with you who has To get your probationary licence, you must: a full (non-probationary) car licence • have turned 18 years old • carry your learner permit whilst driving • have held a learner permit for a continuous period of at least: • display L plates on the front and rear of ❏ your vehicle 12 months if you are aged under 21 years when you apply for probationary licence • have a zero Blood Alcohol Concentration ❏ 6 months if you are over 21 years of age but (BAC) (see pages 68 – 71 for more information) under 25 years • not use a mobile phone, hands free or hand ❏ 3 months if you are aged 25 years or held, or do messaging of any kind over. • not tow a caravan, or a trailer If you are the holder of a motorcycle licence or permit and have held this for 12 • drive a car only (not a bus or truck). or more months then these periods may be reduced. • drive a car ALCOHOL CONCENTRATION (BAC) BLOOD only (not a bus or a truck). • not be disqualified from driving in Victoria, in Australia or overseas is a measure of the amount of alcohol you have in your blood. • pass a computerised Hazard Perception Test before a driving test can be conducted. (See Drive Test, page 16 - 17). 13
  • 16. Ten steps to getting your licence • If you got your learner permit on or after 1 July CONTINUOUS PERIOD means that the 2007 and you are under 21 years of age when you permit must not have been broken by a suspension or a apply for a probationary licence you must produce break in continuity such as allowing the permit to expire evidence of having completed 120 hours of before regaining a new permit. It also refers to supervised driving (including at least 10 hours at the period immediately before you apply for your licence. night) by presenting the Learner Log Book. All necessary details must be completed and each You can book your test: entry signed. The Declaration of Completion must • by phone (see pages 8-9) be signed by both the applicant and a supervising driver and the List of Supervising Drivers must be • in person (go to any of the VicRoads Customer completed and signed by all supervising drivers. Services Centres listed on the inside back cover of this handbook). Incomplete or incorrect Learner Log Books will not Note: if you cannot keep an appointment you will need be accepted. You will not be able to take your test to give VicRoads 24 hours notice to cancel your test, and all fees will be forfeited. otherwise fees will not be refunded unless you produce a In the event that entries in the Learner Log Book medical certificate or other supporting evidence. If you are found to be incomplete or incorrect, there are transfer your appointment, an additional appointment SIGNIFICANT CONSEQUENCES. The learner fee will apply. will lose their booking and test fees, and be STEP 7 prevented from taking the probationary licence test for at least six weeks. You may be liable to Pass your HEAVY PENALTIES under the Road Safety Act probationary licence test 1986. You can be tested at any of the VicRoads Customer Service Centres listed on the inside back cover of this handbook. 14
  • 17. For your test, you or your driving supervisor or • You will do a computerised Hazard Perception instructor have to provide a registered, Test to see how safely you respond to traffic roadworthy car that is fitted with L plates. situations. • You will do a practical driving test to assess your You must bring: driving skills (see Drive Test, page 16-17). • your appointment number • If you got your learner permit on or after 1 July • your current learner permit Note: If you cannot 2007 and you are under 21 years of age when • your completed Learner Log Book which prove that you have you apply for a probationary licence you must completed 120 includes the completed Declaration of hours of driving provide evidence of completing 120 hours Completion and List of Supervising Drivers (if practice including (including 10 hours at night) of supervised you are under 21 years of age, when you apply 10 hours of night driving in the correctly completed Learner Log for a probationary licence) driving you will not Book. The Declaration of Completion must be be permitted to sit • payment for your probationary the test. Your signed by both learner and supervising driver, licence if you pass the test. appointment and and the List of Supervising Drivers signed by all test fees will be If you have a medical condition that may affect drivers that supervised the learner. forfeited and you your driving and you have not previously told will also have to VicRoads, you must provide a medical certificate wait at least six For your test you must provide a registered which states your fitness to drive. Once you hold a weeks before you and roadworthy car. probationary licence, you must tell VicRoads if can take the licence test. you develop any medical condition that might The Hazard Perception Test affect your driving. The Hazard Perception Test is designed to see How will you be tested? how safely you respond to traffic situations. • You will read an eyesight chart to test your vision. This test can be undertaken at the age of 17 years 15
  • 18. Ten steps to getting your licence and 11 months. This test must be passed before Drive Test the drive test can be conducted. The on-road driving test is designed to identify drivers with the safe driving skills that develop with It will indicate how well you are able to obser ve driving experience. It will be difficult to pass the the whole road environment and anticipate test if you have not had enough supervised driving potential hazards (see Practice is the best way, experience. page 36). You need to be fully prepared before you come to A POTENTIAL HAZARD can be anything in sit for your test. the road environment that could present You will drive for about 30 minutes during the test and a danger or a risk while driving. the test route will include a range of driving conditions and tasks. You will have to show that you can: For each item in the Hazard Perception Test, you will see a video of a traffic situation and be • control the vehicle correctly given a driving task such as slowing down or • obey the road rules making a turn. • co-operate with other road users You have to respond safely to each traffic situation. • demonstrate acceptable safe driving skills. For some items, there is a time when it is safe to During your test, your ability to drive safely in perform the driving task; for these items you less demanding situations will first be assessed. should click a mouse button during the safe time. This part of the test is to make sure that you have basic car control and traffic skills. If you pass this For other items, there is no time when it is safe to part of the test, you will then be assessed in a perform the driving task; for them, you do not have broad range of realistic traffic situations. to click a mouse button. If you do something that is unsafe in the test, the test will be stopped and you will fail. 16
  • 19. black letters with the words ‘Driver under Further information about the test will be available instruction’. Your P plates must also be displayed. at If you are tested in a car that has dual controls STEP 8 and your instructor holds a current Driving Pay for and receive Instructor Authority Number, you can have your your probationary licence driving instructor with you. Otherwise, only the VicRoads testing officer will be with you. Other Once you have passed the test, you will: passengers are not usually permitted. • pay for your probationary licence If a car has DUAL CONTROLS, it has • have your photo taken for your licence. additional pedal(s) on the passenger side for use by the accompanying driver. You will then be given your probationary licence. STEP 9 If you are tested in a vehicle that is fitted with Continue learning to drive automatic transmission you will be restricted to and driving to learn driving only vehicles that are fitted with automatic transmission during your probationary period. Now that you are able to drive without a The only way this restriction can be removed supervising driver or instructor, your real earlier is by passing another drive test in a learning will begin! Having your probationary manual car. licence will mean you have the minimum skills required for driving solo. It will be up to you If you hold a probationary licence and you are to improve your driving, and to drive safely undergoing instruction or testing in a manual and responsibly. vehicle, you must display a yellow plate measuring approximately 150mm by 150mm inscribed in 17
  • 20. Ten steps to getting your licence • not drive a high powered vehicle (unless you For those aged under 21 years when applying are driving the vehicle during working hours at for a probationar y licence: the request of your employer or have been You must hold your probationary licence for a granted a written exemption by VicRoads) minimum of 4 years, before you can be given your • not use a mobile phone, hands free or hand full driver licence. A full licence will not be given to held, or do messaging of any kind you until your probationary period is over. • not tow a caravan or a trailer (unless for work or From 1 July 2008 there will be P1 and P2 if under instruction) probationary licences. The P1 licence period lasts for a minimum of 1 year and if you have a good • not carry more than one passenger aged driving record you will progress to the P2 licence between 16 and 21 years of age period that lasts for a minimum of 3 years. In • drive only a vehicle fitted with automatic addition to obeying the rules that apply to all transmission if you were tested in a vehicle drivers, when you are driving on a P1 probationary fitted with automatic transmission. licence, you must: In addition to obeying the rules that apply to all • display RED P plates on the front and rear of drivers, when you are driving on a P2 probationary your vehicle (plates measuring approximately licence, you must: 150mm square bearing a white letter P on a red background) • display GREEN P plates on the front and rear of your vehicle (plates measuring approximately • carry your probationary licence with you at all 150mm square bearing a white letter P on a times green background) • have a zero Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) (see Alcohol, page 68) • carry your probationary licence with you at all times 18
  • 21. You must hold your probationary licence for a • not use a mobile phone while driving minimum of 3 years, before you can be given your • have a zero Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) full driver licence. A full licence will not be given to (see Alcohol, page 68) you until your probationary period is over. • not drive a high powered vehicle (unless you From 1 July 2008 there will be P1 and P2 are driving the vehicle during working hours at probationary licences. If you are 21 or over you the request of your employer or have been will move straight to a P2 probationary licence. granted a written exemption by VicRoads) In addition to obeying the rules that apply to all • drive only a vehicle fitted with automatic drivers, when you are driving on a P2 probationary transmission if you were tested in a vehicle licence, you must: fitted with automatic transmission. • display GREEN P plates on the front and rear of There are severe penalties that may be applied your vehicle (plates measuring approximately for breaching any of these conditions, including 150mm square bearing a white letter P on a licence suspension, fitting of alcohol ignition green background) interlocks and severe penalties for drink drive • carry your probationary licence with you at all offences. A good driving record will be required times to progress to a full licence. • have a zero Blood Alcohol Concentration A good driving record means you avoid having (BAC) see Alcohol, page 68) your licence cancelled or suspended, as well as avoiding any drink and/or drug driving offences. • not use a mobile phone while driving For those aged 21 years or over when applying for a probationar y licence: 19
  • 22. Ten steps to getting your licence • not drive a high powered vehicle (unless you are driving the vehicle during working hours at A HIGH POWERED VEHICLE is a vehicle that has: the request of your employer or have been granted a written exemption by VicRoads) • eight or more cylinders • a turbocharged or supercharged engine • drive only a vehicle fitted with automatic transmission if you were tested in a vehicle • an engine that has been modified to improve its fitted with automatic transmission. performance AND/OR There are severe penalties that may be applied for • is one of a certain number of high performance six breaching any of these conditions, including cylinder cars which include BMW M and M3, Honda licence suspension, fitting of alcohol ignition NSX, Nissan 350Z, Porsche (all models) and interlocks and severe penalties for drink drive Mercedes Benz SLK350. offences. Vehicles excluded from these restrictions are: A good driving record will be required to progress • diesel powered turbocharged or supercharged to a full licence. A good driving record means vehicles (without engine performance modifications) you avoid having your licence cancelled or • nominated vehicles with low powered turbocharged or suspended, as well as avoiding any drink and/or supercharged engines, including Suzuki Cappucino drug driving offences. 2D Cabriolet Turbo 3 cylinder 689cc and Daihatsu Copen L880 TD 2D Convertible 4 cylinder 659 cc • all models of the Smart car produced by Mercedes For more information about high powered Benz AND vehicles, visit VicRoads website or obtain an • vehicles driven as part of the driver’s employment information sheet from any VicRoads Customer and at the request of the employer. Service Centre. 20
  • 23. Language Options STEP 10 When you go for your learner permit test or your Receive your probationary licence test, you can choose to do the full driver licence road law questions and the Hazard Perception Test on the computer in any of the following 20 languages: Before your P2 probationary licence expires, you will be sent a notice to renew it. You will need to Somai Albanian Italian take the renewal notice to any photo point listed on Spanish Arabic Laotian the accompanying pamphlet, pay the renewal fee and be photographed. You will then be issued with Turkish Cambodian Macedonian a full licence. Vietnamese Chinese (Mandarin) Polish If you do not receive a renewal notice, it is still Croation Romanian your responsibility to renew your licence by the English Russian expiry date of your licence. German Serbian Greek Sinhalese If you speak a language or dialect that is not on this list, you can have an interpreter present during the test. If you are deaf, you can ask to have an Auslan interpreter present. Interpreters are provided free of charge. When you book your test, just let the VicRoads officer know you need an interpreter. 21
  • 24. The Graduated Licensing System During the first few months and years of driving, new drivers are more at risk of being killed or injured in a crash than experienced drivers. The Graduated Licensing System is one way of reducing this risk. New drivers are given progressive steps, in order to reduce their exposure to high risk situations as they move through the learner permit and the P1 and P2 probationary licence stages to earn their full driver licence. The conditions of the System for those aged under 21 years when they apply for a probationary licence are in Table 1. The conditions of the System for those aged 21 years or over when they apply for a probationary licence are in Table 2. 22
  • 25. FULL DRIVER LICENCE LEARNER PERMIT P2 PROBATIONARY LICENCE P1 PROBATIONARY LICENCE The Graduated DRIVER'S 22 years 16 years 18 years 19 years MINIMUM AGE Licensing System for people who are • medically fit • P1 probationary licence held • P2 probationary licence held • medically fit DRIVER'S • evidence of identity for a minimum of one year for a minimum of 3 years • evidence of identity under 21 years of ELIGIBILITY • learner permit held (with no licence suspension) (with no licence suspensions) age when they continuously for a minimum apply for a of one year probationary • Learner Log Book kept licence (on or after with a minimum of 120 hours supervised driving practice 1 July 2008). including 10 hours at night • Eyesight test • good driving record • good driving record ASSESSMENT • eyesight test • Hazard Perception Test • knowledge test (This test must be passed before the practical driving test can be conducted. This test can be undertaken at the age of 17 years and 11 months) • Practical driving test • RED P plates displayed at front • GREEN P plates displayed at • under 0.05 BAC CONDITIONS • L plates displayed at front & & rear of vehicle when driving front & rear of vehicle when • must carry licence when rear of vehicle when driving • must carry licence when driving driving if under 26 years of age • must carry learner permit The rules driving • must carry licence when • not use a hand held mobile whilst driving for drivers • zero BAC driving phone while driving • accompanied by a driver may vary from • no mobile phone use, hands • zero BAC who has a full car licence state free or hand held, or • high powered vehicle (non probationary) to state, messaging of any kind restrictions • zero BAC it is advisable • high powered vehicle • if tested in an automatic • no mobile phone use, hands that you restrictions vehicle, only drives a vehicle free or hand held, or contact the • no towing a caravan with automatic transmission messaging of any kind interstate or trailer (unless for work or • not use a hand held mobile • no towing a caravan Transport if under instructions) phone while driving or trailer Authority to • not carry more than one • drives a car only (not a bus check if passenger aged between 16 or truck) additional and 21 years of age rules apply. • if tested in an automatic vehicle, only drives a vehicle with automatic transmission P P L DURATION 10 years 10 years (or 3 years on request) 1 years (P1) 3 years (P2) 23
  • 26. FULL DRIVER LICENCE LEARNER PERMIT P2 PROBATIONARY LICENCE The Graduated 24 years 16 years 21 years DRIVER'S MINIMUM AGE Licensing System • probationary licence held • medically fit • medically fit for people who are DRIVER'S ELIGIBILITY for a minimum of 3 years • evidence of identity • evidence of identity 21 years of age or (with no licence suspensions) • learner permit held older when they continously for a minimum apply for a of 6 months if aged 21 to 24 years, or 3 months if aged probationary 25 years or over licence. • good driving record ASSESSMENT • eyesight test • eyesight test • knowledge test • Hazard Perception Test (this test must be passed before the practical driving test can be conducted) • practical driving test • accompanied by a driver • under 0.05 BAC • GREEN P plates displayed at CONDITIONS who has a full car licence • must carry licence when front & rear of vehicle when (non probationary) driving if under 26 years of age driving • must carry learner permit • not use a hand held mobile • must carry licence when whilst driving phone while driving driving • L plates displayed at front & • zero BAC rear of vehicle when driving • high powered vehicle • zero BAC restrictions • no mobile phone use, hands • if tested in an automatic free or hand held, or vehicle, only drives a vehicle messaging of any kind with automatic transmission • no towing a caravan • not use a hand held mobile or trailer phone while driving • drives a car only (not a bus or truck) P L DURATION 10 years 10 years (or 3 years on request) 3 years (P2) 24
  • 27. 1 • Facing the real challenges of driving • Some facts about driving • How complicated is driving? 25
  • 28. 1 The challenges of driving “Nearly everybody I know has a FACING THE REAL licence. So, driving must be easy.” CHALLENGES OF DRIVING New solo drivers have often done very little driving. Many people believe this is the This can result in them having almost no case. Why should you practise experience of the real challenges of driving. when you think driving is so easy? These challenges include: Don’t be fooled into believing • variety of traffic conditions – from light traffic in this is true. local streets to heavy peak hour traffic • extremes in weather – rain, fog or icy conditions • different driving manoeuvres – driving in roundabouts, making U-turns or turning at What is more different types of intersections challenging • effects of the time of day on visibility – night than driving? driving or sun glare when driving at dawn Nothing! or dusk • unexpected actions of other drivers and riders – stopping quickly, merging or turning without warning • types of roads – freeways, roads with trams or undivided main roads 27
  • 29. • imperfect road surfaces – potholes, gravel or Not all driving mistakes result in a crash. Think slippery surfaces about the mistakes you’ve seen drivers make Getting where without causing a crash: • handling any of these challenges when faced you want with distractions inside the car – radio, noisy – cutting off other cars passengers or mobile phones. to be involves – not giving way – misjudging gaps The worst time to gain this experience is when you more than are driving solo, on your own – with no supervising – trying to overtake when it’s not safe just driving driver to give you advice or help. So make the most – just ‘not seeing’ other road users. of your time as a learner driver and don’t think that the car If driving is so easy, why do so many drivers you can master the challenges of driving overnight regularly make mistakes, sometimes resulting in – you’ll never really stop learning. Remember, crashes? being overconfident, especially as a new solo driver, can lead to making poor decisions when All young drivers face the same challenges it counts. because driving is complicated. It requires a lot of time and effort to become a good driver. SOME FACTS ABOUT DRIVING Research has shown that a minimum of 120 hours of • In Victoria, there are several hundred thousand supervised practice as a learner, and restrictions on crashes every year. new solo drivers for the first few years, can help reduce the risk of a crash. This is why Victoria has • These crashes are not ‘accidents’ – they are due introduced the Graduated Licensing System, to drivers making mistakes. including the mandatory 120 hours to be completed in the Learner Log Book by those aged under 21 years of age when applying for a probationary licence. 28
  • 30. How complicated is driving a car when compared HOW COMPLICATED with playing a ball game? IS DRIVING? You will most With ball games… With driving… likely have played one or Roads can vary enormously – ranging from busy city The playing field or court looks the same each time more ball games, streets to country roads, from freeways to shopping you play – a regular size and marked out in a set way. centre car parks, from highways to local streets. such as football, netball, You can find yourself driving every day of the week, You usually play at a regular time, perhaps on basketball or early in the morning, through the day and late a Saturday afternoon. hockey. You will at night…and in all weather conditions. have practised You’ll find people of all ages on the road – ranging You often play with teammates and other teams for many, many from small children and teenagers, right up to the of a similar age and ability. hours trying to elderly. Skills and abilities will vary – an older improve your pedestrian may not move as quickly as a teenager, a child on a bike may have little control. skills. Learning to drive a car Some are walking, and some are riding bikes or Everyone has the same equipment and can run also requires motorcycles. Others drive small cars, big cars, around the field or court at a similar rate. lots of practice trucks or semi-trailers. Speeds can vary from a few kilometres an hour up to 110 km/h. to develop your skills. On the road everyone is headed somewhere Everyone has one aim – to score a goal or point – different and may be thinking about things other and so you can often predict the play. than driving. The unexpected happens often. 29
  • 31. • Using your mirrors, doing headchecks, Whether it is playing a ball game, a musical changing gears and using turn indicators need instrument, a computer game or activities like to all be done at the right times. inline skating, driving is much more complicated, demanding and far more dangerous. Does it make any sense that people usually spend more time practising sport, music or any other A HEADCHECK means looking over your pastime than they do practising behind the wheel shoulder to see things through the rear side windows – but don’t take your eyes in preparation for solo driving? off the road ahead for more than Even a common driving task like turning right at a second. an intersection is very complicated: • As you approach the intersection you will need • Now you are faced with the challenges in the to judge when to start slowing down, what your turn itself. Is this gap large enough? Is that speed should be at various places on approach vehicle approaching too quickly? Will they stop and whether you’ll need to stop completely. because the traffic light has changed? • You will need to take the traffic around you Now imagine all of these things, and many others into consideration. Are they changing lanes? as well, all needing to happen in a short length of Are the vehicles in front braking more than you? road and a short period of time. Lots to think about Are there pedestrians about to cross the road? and do. • Perhaps you will need to change lanes to do the turn. Is there a gap? When do you change? Do you need to slow down to let a gap ‘catch up’ to you? 30
  • 32. Given how complex driving is, it is important you prepare for the challenge! Point to remember: Prepare for the challenge 1 OBSERVE THE TRAFFIC Observe the traffic around you. Are other vehicles changing lanes or braking more sharply than you? Are there pedestrians about to cross the road? JUDGE THE DISTANCE Judge the distance between you and the vehicles in front and behind – before turning or changing lanes. THINK AHEAD Think ahead when you want to turn off or change lanes. Remember to indicate, do a headcheck and allow a big enough gap. FIGURE 1 31
  • 33. 2 Learning to drive • How do you learn to drive? • Some facts about new solo drivers • Practice is the best way • Your supervising driver is there to help • Put variety into your driving practice • Traps along the road to solo driving • Check your progress 33
  • 34. 2 Learning to drive Research shows that new solo drivers with about Understanding that driving is 120 hours of learner driver experience have a complicated is one thing, becoming crash risk that is 30% lower than new drivers a skilled driver is another. with only about 50 hours of experience. This is why 120 hours has been set as the target for Lots of people can help you – your learners in Victoria. driving instructor, supervising drivers and friends. But learning to drive is SOME FACTS ABOUT NEW mostly up to you and the only way SOLO DRIVERS to become a safe and skilled driver Drivers with little experience make all sorts of is by doing lots of supervised mistakes – increasing the risk of a crash: driving practice. • They are less able than experienced drivers to The only way HOW DO YOU LEARN predict possible problems. By the time they have recognised the hazard it may be too late. to learn to drive TO DRIVE? • They tend to concentrate more on their basic The more you do something, the better at it you is by doing lots driving skills than experienced drivers and can get. Athletes, musicians and artists know there is find it hard to deal with unexpected events. of supervised no substitute for continued practice – refining and improving skill and performance. • They can be easily distracted from driving by practice things such as mobile phones, music or the It is exactly the same with driving. How well you radio, and passengers. can drive is limited to the amount of driving • They tend to watch the vehicle immediately in experience, you have – the more experience the front rather than looking further ahead, to the safer you will be. sides and behind. So they may miss things that can warn of potential problems. 35
  • 35. New solo drivers are more likely to be involved in: PRACTICE IS THE BEST WAY • Crashes at an intersection when turning right in Every driving practice session really helps, even front of an oncoming vehicle going straight though you may not notice the small improvements: More supervised ahead, or being hit by a right turning vehicle. • your performance will get smoother practice equals New solo drivers tend to misjudge gaps in • you will make better decisions the traffic. • you will also get better at thinking about what fewer crashes might happen on the road around you. • Crashes into the rear of another vehicle. New later on solo drivers are more likely to be in the vehicle The right structure for your practice will help you that hits the one in front. These crashes are make sure you really are ready to drive solo by the often caused through speeding, not scanning the time you go for your licence test. There are four road ahead, and driving too close. stages you need to work through as a learner to become a safe driver: • Crashes that involve driving off the road. These crashes occur about twice as often on a straight • Stage 1 is all about controlling your car. It’s the section of road than on a curve. Speed is a main shortest stage, and aims to get you to start, stop cause, but other factors also contribute such as: and steer safely in a quiet area without traffic. – failing to predict a possible problem on the • Stage 2 is about applying your new car-control road ahead skills and looking out for other road users on quiet – being distracted or a lapse in concentration roads with little traffic. – poor vehicle control • Stage 3 takes longer and uses your Stages 1 and 2 – failing to adapt to a change in road or traffic skills on busier roads and in more difficult driving conditions. situations. Now you start becoming a real driver. You learn to deal with traffic and other hazards to Also alcohol affects safety related driving skills of become safe in varied driving situations. inexperienced drivers compared to experienced drivers. 36
  • 36. HAZARD PERCEPTION is the ability to identify, assess, decide and respond to possible risks or dangers in the road scene around you. This is known as hazard perception. • Stage 4 also takes a long time and can be the longest stage. It involves driving as if you’re a Hazard perception is the ability to: solo driver. You still have your Ls on the car • identify possible risks or dangers in the road and a supervising driver beside you, but you’ll scene around you learn to make most of the driving decisions • assess the level of risk and predict what yourself. The aim is to build up lots of different might happen experiences where you act like a solo driver. • respond in a way and in time to avoid or deal Then when you hit the road on your own you’ll with these possible hazards. be ready. The Guide for Learners and the Guide for Possible hazards can be the vehicles around you, Supervising Drivers contains detailed advice about such as: what you and your supervising driver need to do in • the cars in front, behind and beside you each of these four stages. You will be given these • the motorcycle in the side street to your left booklets when you pass the learner permit test. • the truck double-parked up ahead • the car approaching in the overtaking lane five Safe driving is about being ready for what may car lengths behind you. happen Possible hazards can also be: What happens in your head is more important than • pedestrians how well you control your car. • cyclists Being able to predict what may happen around you • weather conditions – as a driver – is an essential skill, which only • potholes in the road comes with lots of experience. With the • traffic conditions information collected through lots of practice and • the tightness of a curve ahead experience, you begin to anticipate more and make • a blind crest on a hill. better decisions as a driver. 37
  • 37. Hazards can be anything in the road environment You can that could present a danger or a risk while driving. New drivers often don’t see or anticipate the only check possible hazards around them. everything out by Because possible hazards can be anywhere, you doing can’t rely on just looking ahead and using your BLIND SPOT BLIND SPOT mirrors. Regardless of how well you set up your a headcheck! rear view mirrors, blind spots remain. These are areas behind the driver that can’t be seen using only mirrors, such as outside the rear passenger door on the driver’s side. You can only see in these blind spots by moving your head and quickly looking over your shoulder – this is called a headcheck (see headcheck definition, page 30). Do this as well as using FIGURE 2 mirrors to make sure you see everything around Be aware of your blind spots you, such as when reversing, changing lanes, merging or pulling out to overtake. As a driver, knowing exactly what is happening around you at all times is essential. Learn to constantly scan and you will be in a better position to anticipate hazards and respond in the best way. 38
  • 38. YOUR SUPERVISING DRIVER IS THERE TO HELP To get started, have To SCAN means taking in the road scene around you by looking ahead, to the sides your first Driving takes much more effort in the beginning, and in rear view mirrors. when you are learning. It is just not possible for few lessons with new drivers to be able to do all that is required a professional when driving – that is why you have your supervising driver beside you. They don’t take the driving place of professional driving instructors, but instructor supervising drivers such as your parents, can provide the extensive practice opportunities you will need. They are there to help you: • with an extra pair of eyes to watch the road • with some decisions FIGURE 3 • as an early warning system – to help you Adjust your mirrors after you have positioned the anticipate potential hazards driver’s seat so that you can see clearly. When adjusted correctly there will be an overlap between • by being a sounding board – there are a lot of the view from your outside and inside mirrors. things to make decisions about. Adjust your outside mirrors so that they just catch a Over time, and with lots of practice, as you view of the edge of the car. In some cars, a good progress through the four stages of learning to guide is to be able to see the rear door handle in the drive, the role of your supervising driver will bottom corner of the side mirror. gradually change. 39
  • 39. It can be easy to find excuses for not getting the You will take more responsibility for your driving right practice you need, as you progress through and your supervising driver will do less. You can see each of the four stages of learning to drive. In To help your supervising driver, once you have the differences Stage 1 you will need to plan specific practice passed your learner permit test, you will be sessions in quiet areas without traffic. As you between an given the Guide for Supervising Drivers. This progress to Stage 2 you will drive around routes booklet provides lots of advice and ideas for experienced and you plan on quiet roads with little traffic. In Stage supervising drivers on how they can help you 3 you will drive on busier roads and in more an inexperienced with driving practice. difficult driving situations and begin to do more driver but the normal day-to-day driving tasks. In Stage 4 you will learn to make most of the driving decisions only way to get from Research shows that learner drivers with yourself, but still with your supervisor beside you, 120 hours of driving practice can reduce one to the other is and you need to build your experiences in as many their risk of a crash during their first situations as possible. two years of solo driving by 30% with lots of compared with those who have only 50 Avoid excuses for not getting the practice you hours of driving practice. experience need. In particular, when you are at Stages 3 and 4 you need practice especially when the situation Your driving will develop with practice. In order to is challenging, such as when: get lots of practice you need to enter a partnership • traffic is heavy with your supervising driver. This partnership is vital because you can only practise if your • conditions are bad – possibly wet and slippery supervising driver agrees to let you drive. at night • the road is narrow with lots of curves. 40
  • 40. Naturally, there will be times when it may not be PUT VARIETY INTO YOUR appropriate for you to get behind the wheel. You DRIVING PRACTICE need to build on your experiences gradually and not try too much too soon. However, even these If you got your learner permit on or after 1 July times when you are not behind the wheel, can still 2007 you must keep a Learner Log Book as a provide you with opportunities for learning and record of your supervised driving practice (if you discussion with your supervising driver. Make the are under 21 years of age when you apply for a most of being a passenger and develop your probationary licence). observation skills – think about how you would You should use the Learner Log Book as a tool to drive in these situations! plan the types of driving experience you need and to It is important that both you and your supervising make sure you get plenty of driving practice in a driver feel comfortable with the type of practice variety of conditions. It will also tell you at glance you are getting. Gradually build up the challenges which types of driving experience and conditions as you progress through each of the four learner you still need to focus on. stages, rather than jumping in at the deep end. Driving involves so many different situations The Guide for Learners and the Guide and conditions. It is important to encounter as for Supervising Drivers uses goals to many of these as possible during your practice help you and your supervising driver sessions. Increase both the amount and variety of HOT TIP work out whether you are ready to practice to increase your chances to gain valuable move to the next step in building your driving experience. driving experience. 41
  • 41. The same stretch of road can present very different challenges, depending on the combinations of traffic and weather conditions, time of day and road users at a particular time. The only way to be sure you can deal with these different challenges is to practise often in lots of situations with your supervising driver. Take every opportunity to practise for 10, 20, 30 minutes, or an hour. Short frequent drives are far more valuable than the occasional long drive, and at the start, shorter more frequent practice QUIET CONDITIONS sessions are more productive and less stressful for both the learner and the supervising driver. Remember the more supervised practice you have in a wide variety of situations and conditions, the fewer crashes you are likely to have later on. So, what do you need to do?…Practise often! BUSY CONDITIONS 42
  • 42. WET CONDITIONS AT DUSK GLARY CONDITIONS AT NIGHT The same location showing a variety of driving conditions 43
  • 43. You may see early signs of improvement in your TRAPS ALONG THE ROAD TO driving quite quickly – these tend to be mainly in SOLO DRIVING controlling the car. What may have seemed difficult or impossible the very first time – such as As you progress with practice you may find that just turning left – seems simple after a few lessons you seem to be picking things up quickly. With or a few hours behind the wheel. driving, appearances are often deceiving. It can appear that there is little left to learn after several However, this is misleading. There is more to lessons or a few dozen hours of practice – driving driving than just car control. Driving tasks you can seem easy. Don’t fall into this trap! seem to master will continue to improve for some time to come. Remember these tasks are only a small part of becoming a competent driver. That is You feel better… why it is recommended that you organise your before you do better! supervised driving practice around the four stages of learning to drive. You will continue to learn and improve for years to come. There are five different types of skills you need to develop as a driver. The first one comes relatively So don’t be fooled – keep practising! You will keep quickly, but the rest will develop over time with getting better even though you may not be aware lots of practice: that your skills are improving. 1 Car control – steering, brakes, using pedals, Practice will build your confidence in yourself as a buttons and other controls. These skills tend to safe driver and this is a good thing. But don’t come relatively quickly and can make you think become overconfident! you have learned it all! 44
  • 44. speed is best for different conditions, when to If your brakes have failed: change lanes or overtake. These and many • pump on the brake pedal hard and fast Some practice other decisions need to be made every time • apply the handbrake carefully so the HOT TIP may make you you drive. The ability to make the right decisions vehicle doesn’t skid only comes with experience and lots of practice. • if possible, change to a lower gear (even in an good some of automatic vehicle) and use your horn to alert the time. other drivers If you have a tyre blowout while driving, • try to steer the vehicle so that you avoid a remember to keep a firm grip on the Lots of practice severe collision. steering wheel, take your foot off the HOT TIP will make you accelerator and brake gently once you feel the 2 Visual scanning – looking to the front, the vehicle is under some control. consistently good! sides, in the rear view mirror and taking notice of what is happening on the edge of your vision (peripheral vision). New drivers tend to look Operation of Antilock Braking System (ABS) mostly to the front. In an emergency stop with ABS, keep firm 3 Thinking and responding – includes assessing HOT TIP pressure on the brake pedal. When ABS is hazards and judging distances between you operating there may be a vibration or shuddering and other cars. This takes lots of practice through the car and the brake pedal may pulsate. to develop. For ABS to work properly keep firm pressure on the brake pedal. 4 Identifying and weighing up risks – recognising a risk and taking the right action to deal with it To confirm if the car is fitted with ABS - check the takes practice. New drivers don’t identify risks owner’s manual or ask the owner. Visit as quickly as experienced drivers. and search for ABS for more information. 5 Making decisions – deciding when to slow down and by how much, when to accelerate, what 45
  • 45. making decisions car control visual scanning thinking and identifying and Smooth driving responding weighing up risks minimises fuel NEW DRIVER SKILLED DRIVER consumption, DRIVER SKILLS THAT DEVELOP OVER TIME WITH PRACTICE exhaust CHECKING YOUR PROGRESS you make – such as stalling, grating gears, hitting emissions to kerbs and running wide – will go from being once Here are some things to look at to check on your every trip…to once a day…to once a week. the environment and progress as you move through the four stages of Don’t make your aim just passing the licence test! learning to drive. wear and Make your goal being able to drive in a consistent tear on way without making lots of mistakes. This way Smoothness passing the licence test should be easier and you your vehicle As you become more experienced you will find won’t have to take the chance of making mistakes your driving changes from ‘clunky’ and ‘jerky’ to during the test itself. ‘smooth’ and ‘fluid’ movements. Speed Control It doesn’t happen straight away, but it will happen with continued practice! Over time and with increasing experience, your ability to control your speed on the road will Consistency improve. In the early stages, it’s all black and white – accelerate to go and brake to slow down You will notice over time that your driving (‘on/off’ speed). This is shown by the red jagged becomes much more consistent. The mistakes line in the graph on the next page. 46
  • 46. Gradually, with increased experience, this will Low speed manoeuvres change from the ‘on/off’ style to an ‘ease-on/ease- When things are done more slowly there is off’ style. This is shown by the curvy green line in more time for mistakes to be noticed. Don’t just aim the graph. Low speed manoeuvres are a good way to test at passing the Better speed control goes hand-in-hand with other your performance. In a safe place with no other improvements you will experience in your driving test, aim at traffic, try: – as you continue to practise. learning to • reversing over an extended distance – in a straight line SPEE D drive safely! • driving into and reversing out of an angled parking bay. These are good ways to assess how you’re going and can be a good indication of your level of vehicle control. Seeing the big picture! TI M E With practice you will find that you will be able to take in more of what is going on around you. You SPEED CONTROL OVER TIME won’t be focused just on what is happening on the On/off speed (accelerate to go, brake to slow) road immediately in front or behind you. Target speed Ease-on/ease-off speed You will discover that you have already noticed the traffic slowing way ahead or the car signalling to 47
  • 47. Anticipation is about being ready to respond to a pull out from the kerb, before your supervising situation before it happens! driver points it out. Gradually your supervising driver won’t need to point things out to you as often. Most driving Regardless of how quick your reactions are you will respond faster if you have anticipated the need You will develop the skill to know where to look shouldn’t be for action. You need to scan the traffic and road and when to look. You will also develop the ability surprising – environment all the time and expect the to quickly work out the best way to respond to unexpected. different situations. not because it Remember you will be travelling at speeds up Basically, you will start looking at the big picture is boring, but to 110 km/h – think about how important rather than focusing only on smaller parts. because the anticipation is! Anticipation! surprises Gaining independence As your driving experience increases you will find have been that you are starting to think more about what You will notice a shift in how much you rely on anticipated! might happen next – this is anticipation. You will your supervising driver. At the start you really find that you begin to predict the chance of: need the extra set of eyes and a decision maker in the car with you, helping you out. With • a car in front stopping quickly in heavy traffic increasing experience, you will notice you are • a pedestrian walking onto the road from taking more responsibility for your driving – between parked cars but still with the back-up from your supervising driver if it is needed. • varying road surfaces and conditions • other situations that can happen on the road around you. 48
  • 48. You can ‘measure’ this by thinking about: Given the challenges of driving – variety and lots of practice is vital. • the amount of advice you ask for and get during Seeing your practice sessions – should I give way to Remember to monitor the variety of driving the big the pedestrian? practice you are getting through regularly reviewing your Learner Log Book. picture only • the ‘warnings’ provided – watch the red car! comes with • the decisions taken on your behalf – change Points to remember: lanes now because we have to turn right soon. experience Prepare for the challenge 1 The changes will be gradual as you gain more experience through practice. Your aim should be to drive without relying on your supervising driver, long before you sit for your licence test. Practise often 2 Use the goals in the Guide for Learners and Guide for Supervising Drivers as a useful way to monitor how you are HOT TIP going. The more practice you do before driving solo the better prepared and safer you will be. Of course you will still keep learning while driving solo but make the most of your time as a learner driver! 49
  • 49. 3 Managing risk • Alcohol and drugs • Mobile phones • Speed • Fatigue • Seat belts • Vehicle maintenance • Managing driving risk • Your crash risk as a solo driver • Reducing your risk of a crash 51
  • 50. 3 Managing risk Driving involves risk – a risk that Certain factors have been shown to you may crash and that you or increase the risk on the road: others may be injured or killed. • alcohol and/or drugs and driving Good drivers aim to reduce and manage the risk. • speeding The best way for new solo • fatigue – driving when tired drivers to manage the risk is to • not wearing seat belts be prepared. The more driving experiences you have with a • poor vehicle maintenance. supervising driver, the better The best way for These are risk factors you can’t prepared you will be later as a new solo drivers ignore. You need to be responsible solo driver. for your actions and make the right to manage the decision to manage these risks. You also reduce the risk by making risk is to be It’s really up to you to drive within good decisions and taking really prepared your limits. responsibility for your behaviour when driving. 53
  • 51. ALCOHOL AND DRUGS Different drugs will affect you in different ways, but they all have a bad effect on your driving. Zero Alcohol, drugs and certain medicines reduce your Many prescription and over-the-counter medicines ability to drive safely. always can affect your ability to drive safely. Find out what The mix of any of these together is even worse effects the medicines you take may have on you. means than any one of them by itself. A driver who has Don’t just rely on what your friends say – talk to had just a few drinks and used some cannabis, will zero your doctor or pharmacist to find out more. drive as dangerously as a very drunk driver. The Don’t mix driving with alcohol or drugs (including same is true for other combinations of alcohol, medicines). To avoid the risks plan ahead: drugs and certain medicines. • organise someone to drive who stays alcohol As a learner or probationary driver you must stick and drug free to zero Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) – no • stay over rather than drive home alcohol at all. There are absolutely no exceptions • arrange to be picked up by a friend or relative to this rule. • use public transport or take a taxi. There are severe penalties for learner and MOBILE PHONES probationary drivers who commit a drink drive offence. This includes fitting of an alcohol ignition For all learners and P1 probationary licence interlock for drink driving offenders caught with a holders (under 21 years when they get their BAC of 0.07 or more when they get their licence back. licence) no mobile phone use is permitted, hands It is important to remember that alcohol can free or hand held, or messaging of any kind. remain in your system some time after you finish P2 probationary drivers (21 years or over when drinking. Drivers often test above zero BAC in they get their licence) and fully licensed drivers of the morning after drinking the night before. a vehicle (except an emergency vehicle or police More information on alcohol and road safety 54 can be found on page 68.
  • 52. vehicle) must not use a hand-held phone while the FATIGUE vehicle is moving, or is stationary but not parked. Driver fatigue is also a major cause of crashes. SPEED It can: • cause you to fall asleep at the wheel There is a clear link between speed and crashes. • slow your reflexes, and affect your attention The faster you go the greater your risk of having a and judgment. crash. Speed is a factor in almost 20% of all fatal For young drivers, fatigue is often the result of crashes and about 30% of crashes involving only having a busy lifestyle – parties, late-night jobs and one vehicle – such as running off the road. It also studying. It can happen when: increases how serious a crash will be. • you have not had enough sleep For new solo drivers speeding is even more risky. Going faster than other traffic reduces your • you have been driving for too long without margin for error. As a new solo driver it is difficult a break to do all the things you have to do: • you drive at times when you are usually asleep. • scanning the road Be aware of how your lifestyle affects you – try to • anticipating possible hazards avoid driving when you are tired. • making the right decisions for each situation. You might think that having coffee or taking a short Speeding just makes these harder. break will stop fatigue. Unfortunately this will not help for long – the only way to stop being fatigued is More information on speed can be found on to get enough sleep. pages 46 and 76. 55
  • 53. • On a long trip: Stop and have a sleep if you notice any of the following: – get plenty of sleep before the trip • constant yawning – share the driving whenever possible • starting to drift across the lane – plan ahead and rest overnight • eyes closing or your eyesight getting fuzzy – take regular breaks • trouble keeping your head up • speed is increasing or decreasing unintentionally – don’t start a trip after a long day’s work. • can’t remember the last few kilometres of road • day-dreaming. Fatigue can be a side effect of using Even a power nap of 15 minutes sleep a range of substances – including alcohol. can reduce your chances of having Fatigue slows you down in all sorts of HOT TIP a crash. ways – even very experienced drivers can’t drive if they are asleep! To reduce the chance of fatigue: • stop if you are tired and have a sleep • don’t drive at times when you would normally be asleep such as between 1am and 6am • ensure any medicines you take don’t cause drowsiness. 56
  • 54. SEAT BELTS VEHICLE MAINTENANCE Wearing a seat belt increases the chance of • Tyre pressure and tread depth need to be Being in surviving a crash – provided it is worn correctly. checked and maintained at safe levels. Tyre control of your problems are the most common cause of defect Wearing a seat belt is an important way of related crashes. driving can managing risk not just for you as a driver, but for your passengers as well. Don’t just think • Vehicles must be regularly maintained by an also mean deciding about yourself – make sure your passengers also expert. not buckle-up! • Prospective vehicle purchasers should check to drive Did you know that most crashes happen on short the safety rating of any vehicle they are journeys? So wear a seat belt at all times even if it’s considering to purchase. New and used car only a trip around the corner. More information on safety ratings can be checked via seat belts can be found on page 74. You can also refer to the Australiasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) website or brochure, and the ‘Buyer’s Guide to Used Car Drivers will be fined if passengers under Safety Ratings’ brochure. 16 years are not wearing seat belts or child restraints. Passengers 16 years or older will be fined for not wearing seat belts. 57
  • 55. You still need to build on your supervised driving MANAGING DRIVING RISK experience after you have passed your Just after Practice prepares you to meet the demands of probationary licence test. But do driving. Your ability to drive will improve with this gradually as you get used to the additional you get your practice. The more you do, the better you get. challenges of solo driving. licence… However, managing the risks of driving is also Give yourself a chance to ease into driving the most about choices: solo – perhaps you may not have a lot of night-time driving experience, so ease HOT TIP dangerous • you can choose to drive more slowly into it as a solo driver and let your experience build time of all! • you can choose to increase the space between up gradually. you and the car in front • you can choose to stay behind rather than try and overtake – especially if you’re turning off in a few kilometres • you can choose to ease off a bit more when entering a corner. You choose; you decide. When you are licensed to drive solo – without a supervising driver – you can also choose when to drive and when not to drive. Remember there is still a lot to learn. 58
  • 56. There are many reasons why the graph looks like YOUR CRASH RISK AS this including: A SOLO DRIVER • poor preparation for solo driving The following graph shows the likelihood of being • limited practice as a learner involved in a crash resulting in death or serious injury. The likelihood of a crash is almost halved • taking unnecessary risks – being distracted, after 6 to 8 months of solo driving experience. speeding, mixing alcohol or other drugs It also shows that you will continue to improve with driving. for years after getting your licence. The fact is that there are real and great dangers NUMBER OF DRIVERS facing you as a new solo driver. The challenge for 300 you will be just as great as it is for other new solo 250 drivers. The choices you make during this time are very important. 200 150 100 50 02 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 NUMBER OF MONTHS AFTER OBTAINING A LICENCE DRIVERS INVOLVED IN CASUALTY CRASHES AFTER LICENSING 59
  • 57. REDUCING YOUR RISK Strategy 2 Give yourself some space OF A CRASH The more Having a bit more room to move gives you the space around There are four simple strategies, which will space and time to overcome mistakes – including help you through: your car, the mistakes made by other drivers! Give yourself enough time to react by leaving plenty of distance greater the Strategy 1 between your vehicle and the vehicles around you. Slow down just a bit time you have It is similar to slowing down a bit – a slightly larger to take action Because you are still building your experience, you margin for error can make the difference between cannot expect to be able to anticipate as well as stopping in time and crashing. to avoid drivers with more experience. hazards You may be young and have great reflexes, but this is not enough to avoid a crash. You need to be able to think ahead and respond in the right way. Relying on your reactions alone is a risky business. It makes good sense to build in a bit of a buffer – to take the pressure off and give you just that little bit more time. So, slow down a bit! Safety margin It means dropping your average speed by a few The safety margin is kilometres per hour. You won’t notice going 2 or 3 the space ahead, km/h slower – it certainly isn’t going to delay you behind and to the in any way – but it will give you more time to react sides of your vehicle. to the unexpected. FIGURE 4 60
  • 58. 2 seconds FIGURE 5 same marker. Ask your supervising driver to Following distance also do this and compare your results. The following distance is the space or gap between If your count is not at least two seconds then you and the vehicle in front. you’re too close. You must keep your vehicle a safe distance from At least two seconds of time and the distance this any vehicle in front of you. A safe distance should represents under ideal driving conditions are be enough to allow time to slow down and avoid necessary to give you time to react to any changes trouble. which may happen. You should be at least two seconds behind the Often, you may need more than two seconds. vehicle in front. You can check this by a simple test: This includes: • Focus on a marker in the distance such as a • when visibility is poor signpost or tree and note when the vehicle in front passes the marker, then count the number • if conditions are dark of seconds before your vehicle passes the 61
  • 59. • if conditions are wet or slippery Strategy 3 Think ahead • when you have a heavy load Don’t get caught up just looking at the vehicle in • when the road is unmade. front. Keep your eyes moving and scan the traffic You need to develop your judgement skills about scene. Look well into the distance, to both sides what distance at different speeds represents two and in your mirrors. seconds. This skill will only come with lots of You don’t naturally look around like this. You will supervised driving experience. need to practise and think about what all the But remember, under any conditions that are less others on the road might be intending to do. Your than ideal, a longer gap is recommended. supervising driver will be able to help you. You can also use your time as a passenger to practise. Plan your trips before you start out. Use a If you are driving a long vehicle (any vehicle which, together with its trailer, is at least directory to check out the route you will travel so 7.5 metres long) and you are following you know the way to go. Try using more familiar another long vehicle you must drive at least routes wherever possible. 60 metres away from it, except: This helps to reduce your workload and stress • in a built-up area (one with buildings next to while driving. the road, or street lights), or • in a ‘Keep Left Unless Overtaking’ zone. 62
  • 60. Strategy 4 Points to remember: Driving safely at night Prepare for the challenge 1 Once you get your licence, ease into it and keep night driving to a minimum, particularly in the first few months of solo driving. Not carrying more Practise often 2 than one passenger during the first year or so as a solo driver, especially at night, can also be a good safety strategy. Drive within your limits and 3 manage the risk Crash risk is higher at night, with half of all probationary night-time crashes occurring on Friday and Saturday nights. Keep your speed down, and you will have time to react. You should be able to stop within the distance you can see. In the country this will be your headlight range. Ensure you get lots of practice driving at night when you are driving with your supervisor. 63
  • 61. 4 Rules and responsibilities • Turning • Alcohol • Freeways • Drugs, medicine and driving • Tunnels • The law about • Sharing the road safely seat belts • Parking • Speed limits • Penalties • Road signs • Legal responsibilities • Road markings • Crash responsibilities • Traffic controls at intersections • First aid after a crash • Test yourself questions • Give Way rules 65
  • 62. 4 Rules and responsibilities The rules listed here are only a So what are the rules of driving? summary of some of the road rules There is more to driving than motorists must know. For more just knowing the road rules. information visit our homepage: However, knowing the basic road at rules is essential. You can also purchase a copy As a car passenger, you should be of Road Rules – Victoria, or view the watching drivers and traffic relevant Acts and Regulations online patterns, noticing mistakes other (see Resources to help you, road users make. page 161). Road law, In the diagrams shown in this it’s more than section, the vehicles are coloured what you green and red. In all cases, the know…it’s red vehicle B must wait for the how you use green vehicle A. it that is so important 67
  • 63. ALCOHOL The effects of alcohol on driving BLOOD ALCOHOL Learner and probationary CONCENTRATION (BAC) Alcohol affected drivers: is a measure of the drivers must not drive with amount of alcohol you • feel overconfident resulting any alcohol in their blood. have in your blood. in risk taking on the road It is measured by the This zero BAC also applies number of grams of • are often unaware of the level alcohol in 100 millilitres to all restricted motorcycle of their driving impairment of blood. licence holders, drivers of • have slower reflexes and For example, a BAC taxis, buses and other muscle co-ordination making of .05 means .05 grams or 50 milligrams of it less likely that the driver large vehicles, professional alcohol in every will be able to stop or swerve driving instructors and 100 millilitres of blood. in an emergency some full licence holders • are less able to process who have previously had information and make a drink driving conviction. appropriate decisions as their vision, hearing and brain are All other full licence all adversely affected. holders must be less than A driver who has been drinking struggles to accurately judge .05 BAC. speeds and distances and will often fail to respond to potential 68
  • 64. Some of the factors that lead to dangers in the traffic The risk of being involved in a a different BAC include: environment. The ability to crash increases dramatically if cope with more than one thing the driver has been drinking • gender – a woman drinking at a time is greatly reduced (for alcohol. The graph shows the the same amount of alcohol example, steer a course within a average relationship between as a man of a similar size will lane, respond to traffic signals the risk of having a crash and have a higher BAC and avoid a pedestrian who the amount of alcohol in the • body size – a person of small suddenly steps onto the road). blood. For inexperienced build will have a higher BAC drivers the risk at any BAC than a larger person drinking level will be even higher. What are the risks the same amount of alcohol RISK OF ACCIDENTS Factors affecting BAC 30 • food consumption – food 25 slows down the absorption of Alcohol affects different people 20 alcohol so, if you have not in different ways and can even 15 had a substantial meal before affect the same person on 10 drinking, you will reach a different occasions in different 5 higher BAC more quickly ways. You can drink the same 0 .02 .04 .06 .08 .10 .12 .14 .16 amount of alcohol on different • rate of drinking and the types BAC (BLOOD ALCOHOL CONCENTRATION) days and have different BAC of alcohol consumed – the RELATIVE CHANCE OF readings each time. quicker you drink and the CRASHING AT VARIOUS BACS greater the alcoholic content of the drink, the sooner you will reach a higher BAC 69
  • 65. amount of alcohol in your • general health – if you are in So work out your travel bloodstream or speed up the poor health, your liver is less arrangements before you processing of the alcohol by effective in dealing with the start drinking. your liver. The liver does this in alcohol you drink • Share a taxi with friends its own time. • use of other drugs – • Take public transport combining alcohol with It is important to drugs increases the risk of • Organise with a friend to take remember that if you motor vehicle crashes even turns driving. You and your HOT TIP have a lot to drink the if the alcohol is consumed in friend will need to agree not night before, you are likely to still small doses. to drink when driving have alcohol in your blood the next morning. The effect of alcohol can also • Organise to stay the night. If you are having a party, help exaggerate the mood you are • Arrange to be picked up by a your guests to avoid drinking in, and make you feel more relative or friend who hasn’t and driving. tired if you are already tired. been drinking. Only time reduces your Public breath tester How to avoid BAC level You can measure your BAC drinking and driving Your body takes time to get rid level by using a public breath of alcohol. No amount of coffee, • Plan ahead. It is more tester. These are located in exercise, cold showers, fresh difficult to plan how to get some hotels and are useful to air or vomiting will help. Whilst home if you have had alcohol determine your BAC level. these may make you feel more to drink – remember, your You would need to do this a alert, they don’t change the judgement will be impaired. number of times to get an idea 70
  • 66. give an indication of the alcohol may have their permit or of what BAC your usual pattern in your blood – if any. If you licence cancelled for up to 6 of drinking leads to, and how haven’t been drinking there is long it takes for your BAC to months. If their licence is not no problem. If you have a return to zero. Do not attempt to cancelled they will incur 10 positive result, you will be do this if you are intending to drive. demerit points and the P1 or P2 asked to do a second test on probationary period will be If you drive after drinking another breath testing instrument. extended by six months. If the your driving will suffer – This reading will be used as BAC is .05 or over this will result HOT TIP so remember, the safest evidence if you are over the in a loss of licence for at least 6 BAC is zero even when you have a legal limit. months for a first offence. full licence. Probationary drivers with BAC of Drivers admitted to hospital .07 and over will also have to fit Breath testing procedures after any kind of road crash are an alcohol ignition interlock for a required to provide a breath Police can request the driver of minimum of 6 months when re- test or allow a blood sample to a vehicle to undergo a breath licensed. Heavy fines can also be be taken. test at any time. There are many imposed. breath testing stations or booze Penalties buses patrolling Victorian roads. REFUSING A BREATH TEST You may also be stopped by The penalties for exceeding the IS AN OFFENCE. police in other vehicles and BAC laws are tough - regardless Your licence will be asked to undergo a breath test. of whether you are a learner cancelled and you will be Thousands of drivers are driver or a fully licensed driver. disqualified from driving for randomly tested every week. at least 2 years if Learner and probationary convicted. You will be asked to blow into a drivers who record a BAC small device. It will immediately reading between zero and .05 71
  • 67. consequences – for instance, DRUGS, MEDICINE Illegal drugs having to stop suddenly or to AND DRIVING Illegal drugs such as ecstasy, respond to the actions of other cannabis (marijuana) and vehicles or pedestrians. Your Medicines and illegal drugs heroin can affect your ability to ability to concentrate and that can affect safe driving safely control a vehicle. maintain attention, make are detected in over 30% of decisions and to react to Victorian driver fatalities. Drugs like speed or ecstasy can unexpected events is greatly In Victoria it is an offence make you feel as if you are a to drive a motor vehicle reduced. Important road signs better driver. Unfortunately, as while impaired by a drug. may be missed. your confidence goes up, your Police have the power to driving skills go down, making In an emergency situation, the undertake roadside saliva you a danger to yourself and risk of a crash is increased, and testing of drivers and riders, everyone else on the road. your ability to avoid the crash is to detect the presence of It is extremely dangerous when reduced. Combining even small speed (methamphetamine), the effect wears off, as you are amounts of cannabis and THC, the active ingredient likely to experience sudden, alcohol causes much greater of cannabis, which uncontrollable sleep. impairment than either one on indicates recent cannabis its own. use, and ecstasy (MDMA). Some illegal drugs present Driving with these drugs in special problems. Cannabis, for the blood or saliva is an example, can make you unable offence and penalties to respond quickly enough to (including licence loss) will what other drivers are doing. apply. This can have serious 72
  • 68. Medicines • some strong painkillers. How to reduce the risk of a crash when on medication If you’re out of Not everyone will experience Many prescription medicines • Do not use alcohol with the effects of a drug in the and some medicines bought shape, your driving your medicines same way. When you start over the counter from a will be using a new medicine which pharmacist can impair your • Keep to the prescribed may affect your driving, it is driving and increase the risk of as well doses best not to drive until you crashes by affecting your: • Do not treat yourself with understand and have • mood additional medicines or other experienced what effect it remedies. Always check with actually has on you. Most • concentration your doctor or pharmacist medicines have no effect on • coordination, and safe driving. Your doctor or • Do not use other people’s pharmacist will be able to give • reaction time. medicines you advice about this. Some examples of prescription • Read the labels on all your medications that can affect medicines and heed their driving are: advice. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if the • sleeping tablets label on your medicine states • muscle relaxants that the medicine may cause drowsiness. • sedatives • antihistamines (such as in hay fever or cold and flu medicines) 73
  • 69. If you are worried about THE LAW ABOUT are to do their job in a the effect that your crash. Never put more than SEAT BELTS medicine has on your HOT TIP one person in a restraint. driving, stop your driving – not Wearing a seat belt is the your medicine! Adult seat belts are not most effective measure for Stop driving and contact your designed to protect small reducing serious injury in a doctor or pharmacist if your bodies in a crash. Children crash. It is because seat medicine: need restraints that belts are so effective that • affects your reflexes specifically fit their size all drivers and passengers • affects your ability and weight. must wear a seat belt or to concentrate appropriate restraint if • makes you sleepy or drowsy It is illegal to travel in the there is one available for load area of any vehicle • gives you blurred or use regardless of where double vision. (for example a van or station they sit in the vehicle. This wagon) unless using a If you have to continue to use includes children and medication that affects your properly constructed seat driving in some way, plan ahead pregnant women. and correctly fitting seat before you drive, or use belt or child restraint. alternative transport such as Seat belts must be taxis or public transport, or call securely fastened and on a friend to drive you. properly adjusted if they 74
  • 70. away from the dashboard as children weigh 32 kg and are Children possible. recommended if children are Drivers must ensure that: using a lap only seat belt. It is safer for children to travel • babies under one year old are in the back seat. carried in an approved child Restraint Fitting If a vehicle has air bags in other restraint, correctly installed Stations can help you positions, consult the vehicle and adjusted to fit the baby fit a child restraint. HOT TIP owner’s manual for advice on • passengers under 16 years positioning restraints. Phone 1300 360 745 are properly restrained by for the nearest location. More information about a seat belt or by a child choosing and using restraints restraint suitable for their and Restraint Fitting Stations Restraints and size and weight. is available from VicRoads air bags Child restraint guidelines: Customer Service Centres and the VicRoads web site: A rearward facing restraint • infant restraints are suitable should not be used if the for babies up to 9 or 12 kgs restraint is in a position where • child car seats are suitable it will be hit by an exploding for children 8 to 18 kgs air bag. • booster seats are suitable for Children using forward facing children between 14 to 26 kgs car seats or boosters in the front seat of a vehicle should do • child harnesses can be used so with the seat pushed as far without a booster until 75
  • 71. Pregnant women SPEED LIMITS Built-up areas The speed limit in a built-up Seat belts protect both pregnant Speed limit signs tell you area is 50 kilometres per hour women and their unborn the maximum speed you (km/h) unless signed babies. The belt will not harm otherwise. the baby if the lap part of the can drive in normal belt is below the bulge, the sash conditions. You must passes between the breasts and always obey them by not the buckle is fastened down by the hips. An unborn baby is exceeding the speed shown. more at risk in a crash if a seat belt is not worn. Buckling up takes A BUILT-UP AREA is seconds – serious where there are crashes take lives. buildings and/or houses next to the road or there is street lighting at intervals not over 100 metres apart for a distance of 500 metres or more. 76
  • 72. On roads Speed limited areas School speed zones where the There are other signs which Lower speed zones are being speed limit is designate speed limits for whole introduced outside all Victorian 80 km/h or areas (networks of roads) schools. above, which have a sign on each road 40 km/h and Permanent into the area. 60 km/h 40 km/h static or electronic variable signs speed limits will be used to alert drivers to the outside lower speed limit. schools on most Shared zones 50 km/h Shared zones have a speed limit roads. of 10 km/h or as indicated on the Shared Zone sign. In a shared zone, drivers must give Freeways and Time based way to pedestrians. 40 km/h country roads speed limits The speed limit on freeways and outside outside built-up areas in Victoria schools on is 100 km/h unless signs tell 60 km/h you otherwise. Some main and 70 km/h streets in rural town centres roads. have 50 km/h speed limits. 77
  • 73. Safe speeds for Light or heavy traffic Green lights can change to red different needs If there is a lot of traffic, slow down to the average speed of A green light may turn red There is no one best speed. everyone else and watch out for before you enter an intersection, Speed limit signs tell you the hazards. Pedestrians often weave so drive at a speed that will allow maximum speed you must not through cars stuck in peak hour you to stop. drive beyond. You have to decide ‘crawls’. Country roads what is a safe speed within the specified limit. and animals Shops, parked cars and people When you see animals – Here are some factors you Where there are shops, there beware. They are unpredictable should consider. are people and cars. Electronic and can wander or dart onto the variable signs at selected strip road. Farmers often move sheep Unpredictable surfaces shopping centres indicate or cattle and you need to slow The risk of losing control of a reduced speed limits at high risk down while you are passing (see vehicle can increase as a result times. Be alert. Children can run Sharing the road with animals, of deterioration in the road such out from between parked cars, page 135). as potholes, wheel ruts or and parked cars can pull out The time of the day grooves, slippery surfaces and from the kerb suddenly. Watch loose gravel. Always try to be your speed, slow down and try It can be difficult to see the road aware of the road surface to anticipate what others may do. ahead when you are driving into conditions and if necessary bright sunlight at dawn or dusk. adjust your driving technique You will need to slow down. and speed according to the conditions. 78
  • 74. Wear sunglasses and use the sun Slippery roads Dirt roads visor in your car. Slippery roads can be caused by Dust from oncoming vehicles If the vehicle in rain, mud, frost or ice. Not all may conceal unexpected Weather conditions front of yours stops areas that are slippery when wet hazards, such as other vehicles, are signposted – watch out for a dip or corner. Dirt roads can Driving in heavy rain, frost or suddenly, and you others. Rain makes all roads become very slippery when wet snow can be very dangerous – it slippery. When rain first begins, or corrugated. Mud thrown onto may be difficult to see and roads are travelling too oil and dirt are washed to the windows can reduce visibility. may be slippery. You need to fast or too close – slow right down, or in some surface. Until further rain Slow down and drive at a speed cases, pull over off the road and washes these away, skidding can appropriate for conditions you will not be wait for the conditions to occur. Slow down and always because road holding is reduced improve. You may need to use keep your distance from the and stopping distances are able to avoid hazard warning lights or rear fog vehicle in front in poor greater. lights while parked. (see Driving a crash! conditions of any sort. Road edge in dangerous conditions or situations, page 121). Road works If you need to move a wheel off the bitumen, such as when Take care when mist or fog At roadwork sites the number of passing an oncoming vehicle on affects visibility. lanes is often reduced to protect a narrow road, don’t panic. road workers. Temporary speed Curving roads Pulling the wheel quickly to get limit signs are erected to guide back on the road may lead to Slow down before entering a traffic through the work site at curve or bend, then accelerate over correction and potential loss safe speeds. All drivers must a little to drive out. It can be of control. Slow down, brake obey the speed limits. dangerous to brake in a curve or gently if needed, take your time bend; you may lose control of and steer normally back onto the your vehicle. bitumen when safe to do so. 79
  • 75. How quickly do you ROAD SIGNS Regulatory signs think you can stop? These signs tell you what you Road signs are there to Speed makes a big difference must or must not do. You are provide information to help to your ability to stop. If you committing an offence if you double your speed, you cover disobey these signs. They are keep you and others safe almost 4 times the distance usually black and white, on the road. before you stop. sometimes with red indicating danger or a restriction. At 60 km/h you may cover up to 67 metres before you can stop. At 100 km/h you may cover up to 142 metres before you can stop. You must keep left However, some regulatory This makes a significant signs are black and yellow: difference to your chance of being involved in a crash. Beware – pedestrians crossing 80
  • 76. Follow these traffic signs Stop and Give Way signs Keep left unless overtaking These are signs showing which These signs enable drivers to Where this sign is shown, or on direction you must, or must get through intersections and multi-lane roads where the not take. other places safely (see Giving speed limit is over 80 km/h, you must not drive in the right way to vehicles at intersections, page 97). lane unless overtaking another vehicle, turning right, making a U-turn, avoiding an obstruction, or when traffic is congested. You must not turn left Hand held signs Hand held signs are often used at work sites. They may also be found at school crossings. You must not enter this road Be prepared to obey the sign. You must stop You must turn left 81
  • 77. Warning signs Intersection Warning signs Intersection Warning signs are These signs alert you of used to warn you of the type of possible danger ahead. They intersection ahead, particularly are usually yellow diamond when the intersection is shapes with black words or dangerous or difficult to see. symbols. Take notice of the Sharp bends advice these signs give. It usually means slowing down. An INTERSECTION is Curves and bends signs where two or more roads meet and where vehicles Curves and bends signs tell you travelling on different what to expect – from simple roads might collide. curves, to winding sections and A winding section of road sharp bends. A normal bend 82
  • 78. There are many types of Intersection control Changing road layout intersections. warning signs End of divided road Traffic lights ahead Cross-road intersection Two lanes are for oncoming traffic Stop sign ahead T-intersection Roundabout ahead Staggered side road junction 83
  • 79. Advisory speed signs Railway level crossings Changing conditions Advisory speed signs are When approaching railway level sometimes used with other crossings – slow down and be warning signs. prepared to stop. The advisory speed sign shows the maximum speed that is safe to drive in good conditions. Hollow/dip in the road Rail crossing ahead Uncontrolled crossings ahead Slippery when wet Advisory speed sign used with curve warning sign Uncontrolled rail crossing on side road Gravel road 84
  • 80. Pedestrian signs Road work signs These signs warn drivers of These are usually temporary pedestrians crossing the road. signs warning drivers to slow down and drive carefully because there are road works Workers on the road ahead ahead. Consider the safety of road workers when approaching road works. Pedestrians crossing You may proceed slowly Left lane ends, prepare to move (merge) into another lane Children crossing Slow down and be prepared to stop 85
  • 81. Direction signs ROAD MARKINGS Centre of the road dividing lines These standard green signs It is important to be able with white lettering are Many roads are painted with to ‘read’ the white or common throughout the State. broken white lines and single yellow markings on the They give information such as continuous lines in the centre of road names, destinations along the road. road. Road markings can a route and distances to the create regulatory destinations. requirements which you must obey and are there to provide a safer driving environment. FIGURE 6 Single continuous dividing lines 86
  • 82. FIGURE 8 FIGURE 7 FIGURE 9 Double continuous white lines Double white lines with a Broken white lines broken line closer to you You must always keep left of In Figures 6 and 7 you must these lines. Do not cross them You may cross these lines to keep left of the lines and drive to overtake or to turn. You overtake, or to enter or leave as close to the left side of the must not park opposite double the road, but only overtake if road as you can. You may cross continuous lines. the road ahead is clear. these lines to enter or leave the road, but only overtake if the road ahead is clear. 87
  • 83. Lane markings Broken white lines separate lanes of traffic going in the same direction. You may change lanes if you signal, and if it is safe to do so. Remember, you must give way to any vehicle already in that lane. You must drive with your vehicle completely within a lane. FIGURE 10 FIGURE 11 Double white lines with a Broken white lines continuous line closer to you separating lanes You must always keep to the left of these lines. Do not cross them to overtake or to turn. You must not park opposite the continuous line side. 88
  • 84. Roads without Special purpose lanes marked lanes Special purpose lanes include Where there are no lane bicycle lanes, bus lanes, transit markings, if there are two or lanes and tram lanes. Signs more lines of traffic travelling in and/or road markings are used the same direction, you may to set aside lanes for special change from one line of traffic vehicles. If specified on the to another if you signal, and if it signs other vehicles may use is safe to do so. However, you these lanes. Drivers must keep may only pass another vehicle out of these lanes during the on the left side when it is times marked on the signs or, if turning right. FIGURE 12 no time is specified, at all times. However, you may travel in Overhead lane signals these lanes for up to 100 metres If overhead lane signals are in (up to 50 metres in a bicycle use, travel in the lanes over lane), only when necessary to which there is a green or white do so, to enter or leave the arrow. You must stay out of road, or to avoid an obstruction lanes with a red X. or turning vehicle. Some examples of special purpose lanes are shown FIGURE 13 on page 90. 89
  • 85. Tram lanes Transit lanes Bicycle lanes For trams and public buses only. For cyclists only, and for During times specified on (See Sharing the road with parking unless prohibited by the signs, transit lanes are trams, page 129). signs. If you need to turn left for buses, taxis, motorcycles, from the road, you may drive Bus lanes trams and vehicles carrying along the bicycle lane for not For buses and other vehicles two or more people (T2 sign), more than 50 metres only if it is as specified on a sign. or three or more people (T3 sign). necessary to do so. You should (See Sharing the road with be courteous to cyclists. You buses, page 132). must give way to cyclists in a bicycle lane, and only move into a bicycle lane when it is safe to do so. You may drive in a transit lane for no more than 100 metres if it is HOT TIP necessary to make a turn. 90
  • 86. Traffic lane arrows Painted traffic islands Arrows are painted on the road Traffic islands are sometimes at some intersections. They tell painted on the road before a you the direction traffic in each right turning lane. You can lane must go. If two directions drive over the painted island are shown, you may go either or stop to wait on it, as long as way. You must not go in a there are no double lines direction other than that outlining the island on the left, indicated by the arrows. but you must give way to any Arrows may also be applied to vehicle in a turning lane or bicycle lanes. Sometimes a entering a turning lane from a ‘head start’ area is provided so marked lane (see Figure 15 on that cyclists can be seen by page 92). drivers when stopped at red You should not enter the traffic lights. painted island to turn right if the traffic is not banked up. FIGURE 14 91
  • 87. Give Way line Stop line markings – markings – with or without with or without Stop signs Give Way signs FIGURE 15 Red vehicle B must give way to FIGURE 17 green vehicle A FIGURE 16 Red vehicle B must give way to Red vehicle B must give way to green vehicle A green vehicle A (See Giving way to vehicles at (See Giving way to vehicles at intersections, page 97). intersections, page 97). 92
  • 88. TRAFFIC Traffic lights CONTROLS AT INTERSECTIONS Half of all crashes Green means you may enter happen at intersections. the intersection, but only if you Stay alert and obey the do not block the intersection. intersection rules. Red means you must STOP. Do not enter the intersection. Yellow means STOP unless you are unable to do so safely. 93
  • 89. Traffic lights with arrows Traffic lights for trams, buses and bicycles Traffic lights with arrows make turns easier. If the arrow Some traffic lights signal a pointing in the direction you white T or B on a black want to go is red, you must background. These are used stop; if the arrow is green you for trams and buses at some may proceed in the direction it intersections. Some traffic is pointing if it is safe to do so. lights may have red, yellow and green bicycle lights for use You may turn right by bicycles. Other road users must wait for the normal green light. You must not turn right You may turn left Tram may go. Bicycle may go. You must wait. You must wait. 94
  • 90. Pedestrian signals GIVE WAY RULES To GIVE WAY means Turning vehicles must always There will be many times that if there is a danger give way to pedestrians who are that your vehicle could when you are driving that crossing the road they are collide with another turning into (whether or not your path crosses that of vehicle, person or animal there is a green ‘walking figure’ you must slow down and other road users. When this stop if necessary to avoid a facing the pedestrian). collision. If you are happens, one or more of stationary, you must remain the people involved must stationary until it is safe to proceed. give way in order to avoid a collision. Traffic control signs Here are some everyday Stop and Give Way signs are driving situations when used for safety control at many you will be required to intersections and other places. give way. (See Giving way to vehicles at intersections, page 97). 95
  • 91. Giving Way to In slip lanes At children’s crossings Pedestrians You must give way to any (See Sharing the road with pedestrians in a slip lane. pedestrians, page 123). There are a number of driving situations when you must give On the footpath way to pedestrians. A SLIP LANE is an area When entering the road from a of road for vehicles At pedestrian crossings driveway or adjacent land, you turning left that is must give way to pedestrians You must give way to any separated, at some point, on any footpath, path or nature from other parts of the pedestrian on a pedestrian strip you cross to enter the road by a painted island crossing, and you must not or traffic island. road. You must also give way to overtake another vehicle bicycles or other vehicles on the which has stopped at a footpath, path or nature strip. pedestrian crossing. This also applies when leaving At intersections the road to enter a driveway or adjacent land. When turning left or right at any intersection (except a roundabout), you must give way to any pedestrians crossing the road you are turning into. FIGURE 18 96
  • 92. In shared zones When making a U-turn Giving way to vehicles at In a shared zone shared by both You must give way to all intersections vehicles and pedestrians, you pedestrians as well as vehicles must give way to pedestrians when making a U-turn. Stop or Give Way signs or (see Speed limits, page 76). lines at an intersection At tram stops At Stop or Give Way signs or After stopping at a Stop sign or When passing a stopped tram lines not at intersections line, or when facing a Give Way you must give way to any sign or line at an intersection, You must give way not only pedestrians crossing between you must give way to any to vehicles, but also to any the tram and the left side of vehicle in, entering or pedestrian at or near the sign the road. approaching the intersection or line. This would include except: pedestrians as well as bicycles crossing in front of you on a • a vehicle making a U-turn shared path. • a vehicle turning left using a slip lane • an oncoming vehicle turning right if that vehicle is also facing a Stop or Give Way sign or line. 97
  • 93. Giving way at intersections (except When the law refers T-intersections or to VEHICLES, this includes not only roundabouts) motor vehicles but also horses being ridden If there are no traffic lights or and bicycles. signs or lines at an intersection, The Give Way rules apply you must give way to any equally for these smaller vehicle on your right. vehicles. You could be charged In Figures 20 to 23, just the same for red vehicle B must give way failing to give way to a horse being ridden or a to green vehicle A FIGURE 19 bicycle as for failing to give way to a truck! Red vehicle B must stop and give way to green vehicle A, which is not facing a Stop or Give Way sign 98
  • 94. If you are turning right at an intersection without traffic lights or signs or lines, you must also give way to oncoming vehicles going straight ahead or turning left (except if they are turning in a slip lane) as well as any vehicle on your right. FIGURE 22 FIGURE 20 FIGURE 24 Red vehicle B must give way to FIGURE 23 FIGURE 21 green vehicle A 99
  • 95. These diagrams show how to Giving way at give way at T-intersections T-intersections without lights or signs, or when traffic lights have failed or are flashing yellow. A T-INTERSECTION is where two roads meet and one of them ends. FIGURE 27 T-intersections may not In Figures 25, 26 and 27, always form a regular T the red vehicle B must give way to green vehicle A FIGURE 25 The Give Way rule is the same for all T-intersections. When you enter the continuing road from the road that ends, you must give way to vehicles travelling along the continuing road. FIGURE 26 100
  • 96. FIGURE 28 FIGURE 29 FIGURE 30 The red vehicle must give When you turn right Some T-intersections are from the continuing road way to the pedestrian modified so that the continuing into the road that ends, road goes round a corner. you must give way to The road that ends is marked oncoming vehicles by a continuity line and Give Way or Stop lines or signs. In Figure 30, the red vehicle B is leaving the continuing road to enter the road that ends at the intersection. The red vehicle B must give way to the green vehicle A. 101
  • 97. Giving way at roundabouts When entering a roundabout, you must give way to: • all vehicles already in the roundabout • all trams entering, or approaching the roundabout. Take care to look out for motorcyclists and cyclists already in the roundabout who may be harder to see. FIGURE 31 A roundabout sign Always give way to vehicles already in the roundabout. In this diagram, the red B vehicles must give way to the green A vehicles. Enter only when there is a safe gap in the traffic. 102
  • 98. Giving way on divided roads A ROUNDABOUT is an intersection with When a two-way road is divided a roundabout sign by a median strip, a Give Way at each entrance, a or Stop sign applies to the central island and whole of the intersection. one or more marked lanes, or lines of traffic, all of which have vehicles travelling in A MEDIAN STRIP is a the same direction. dividing strip on the You must always keep road designed to to the left of the separate vehicles central island. travelling in opposite directions. FIGURE 32 The red vehicle B must give Cyclists and animal riders way to the green vehicle A. In a roundabout, cyclists and animal riders have the option of turning right from the left lane, but they must give way to drivers exiting the roundabout. 103
  • 99. Turning from a Other driving divided road situations when you are required When turning from a divided to give way road, you must obey the signs on the road you are turning U-turn from. Normally a vehicle in the same position as the red When making a U-turn you vehicle B could continue if it is must give way to all other safe to do so. However in vehicles and pedestrians. Figure 33 the red vehicle B is facing a Stop Here On Red Entering the road Signal sign, therefore it must stop until that signal is green. Whenever you enter the road FIGURE 33 If there is no sign, you must from a driveway or adjacent give way to traffic when entering land, you must give way to all vehicles and pedestrians. a road from a break in the median strip after turning. Entering the traffic stream Whenever you enter the traffic stream from a parked position, or through a break in a median strip, you must give way to all vehicles travelling on the road. 104
  • 100. Changing lanes Zip merging Whenever you change lanes If you are on a road where from one marked lane or line of there are no lines marked and traffic to another, you must the road is such that two rows give way to vehicles already in of vehicles must merge into that lane or line of traffic. This one, you must give way to any includes whenever you cross vehicle which has any part of its over any broken line marked on vehicle ahead of yours. This is the road which indicates that a called zip merging. Note: if lane ends, for example when you cross any lines marked on merging into freeway traffic. the road, then you are not zip merging but changing lanes, Make a headcheck and must give way accordingly. whenever you are FIGURE 34 HOT TIP changing lanes or pulling Red vehicle B must give way out from the kerb, but don’t take to the green vehicle A When two lanes of your eyes off the road ahead for traffic merge into one more than a second. and there are no lane markings, this is commonly known as ZIP MERGING. 105
  • 101. Police directions TURNING Making turns You must always follow Signalling your moves Plan your turns well in instructions from a member of the Police Force or authorised Always use your indicators to advance. Move into the person rather than any other let others know you are about correct lane long before traffic control signal or rule. to turn or change lanes. you need to turn. The signal must be given for Remember, road users Use the indicators to long enough to warn others can make mistakes about give other road users that you are about to change HOT TIP who should give way. lanes or direction. You must Never assume the other driver has plenty of warning. signal for at least 5 seconds seen you or will give way to you. when moving from a stationary Always make eye contact, and position at the side of the proceed carefully. road or from a median strip parking area. 106
  • 102. Making right turns Making left turns FIGURE 36 Right turns on multi-lane roads FIGURE 37 FIGURE 35 On some multi-lane roads, To make a left turn you must To make a right turn you must: arrows painted on the road will approach the intersection as show you if right turns may also • approach the intersection as close to the left side of the road be made from other lanes. close to the centre of the as possible, but keep clear of road as possible If road markings indicate how a any bicycle lane. turn is to be made, you must • turn just right of the centre Where there is a slip lane, you make a turn as indicated by the of the intersection. must turn using the slip lane road markings. (see slip lane definition, page 96). 107
  • 103. advisable that you stay in the Hook turns same lane as you go from one road to the other. Hook Turn signs are Exception to the found at some turning rules intersections in Central Melbourne. The signs Trucks or vehicles over may be at the side of the 7.5 metres long displaying a road or hung from tram Do Not Overtake Turning Vehicle wires, so be alert in checking for these signs. sign may use more than one lane to turn (see Sharing the road with trucks, page 133). FIGURE 38 Left turns on multi-lane roads For a multi-lane road, arrows painted on the road will show you if left turns may also be made from other lanes. But look out for cyclists on your Hook Turn sign left who may be going A driver turning right at an straight ahead. intersection with traffic lights and a Hook Turn sign must If road markings allow turns turn right by making a hook from more than one lane, it is FIGURE 39 turn as shown in Figure 40. 108
  • 104. To make a hook turn, you must: 1 Approach and enter the intersection from as near as possible to the left. Turn and continue 2 Move forward, keeping straight ahead Wait here until clear of any marked foot the lights in crossing, until your vehicle the street you is as near as possible to the are entering far side of the road that you have changed to green are entering. 3 Remain at the position reached under Step 2 until You must be in the the traffic lights on the left lane to make road you are entering a hook turn. have changed to green. Indicate that you are turning right 4 Turn right into the road and continue straight ahead. FIGURE 40 Doing a hook turn – turning right from the left lane 109
  • 105. A cyclist may make a hook turn at any intersection – not just at hook turn intersections. No U-turn sign • at an intersection where there is a No U-turn sign U-turns FIGURE 41 Where there is no median, it When making a U-turn is advisable that the U-turn be you must: made from the left side of the • have a clear view of traffic in road. Remember to watch out either direction for traffic approaching from No Right Turn sign • complete your U-turn without behind you. • at a No Right Turn sign disrupting other traffic You must not make a U-turn: unless there is a U-turn • signal your intention for a Permitted sign. • over double lines or where reasonable time there is a No U-turn sign, • give way to all other vehicles (if the sign is not at an and pedestrians. intersection continue on until you reach an intersection before you make a U-turn) 110
  • 106. Turning and one way roads FIGURE 42 FIGURE 44 FIGURE 43 Where there is a median, the Turning into one-way roads turn must be made from the Turning from one-way roads When turning left or right from right lane. When turning left or right from a two-way road into a one-way a one-way road into a two-way road, it is advisable to turn into road, you must turn from a the nearest lane. position close to the side you are turning towards. 111
  • 107. Making turns at Three point turn roundabouts Going straight ahead A three point turn is used to turn Approach the roundabout in the your car around on a road which A roundabout is considered to left or right lane. is not as wide as your car’s be a special type of intersection, turning circle. When making a Drive in the same lane through so different rules apply. The three point turn you must: the roundabout. Give Way rules on page 102 • put your left signal before explain what you must do when Do not signal on your approach stopping at the kerb entering the roundabout and to the roundabout, but if • put on your right signal who should give way. practicable, signal left as you exit. before leaving the kerb Sometimes roundabouts have • look in both directions more than one lane. You need Cyclists and animal before commencing the turn to follow these rules about riders may make a right • proceed across the road to turning left or right or going turn from a left lane. the opposite kerb straight ahead. Turning right • look in both directions along Decide before you enter the the road before reversing Always approach the roundabout if you are going to • look in the direction of travel roundabout in the right lane. turn right, left or go before and during reversing straight ahead. Drive close to the centre of the • after reversing, look in both roundabout and follow the right HOT TIP Turning left directions before moving off lane as you leave. Approach in the left lane and Signal a right turn on your stay in that lane. approach, and signal left, if FRONT Signal a left turn on your practicable, just before the exit approach to the roundabout and you are turning into, keeping keep the signal on until you the signal on until you have left have left the roundabout. the roundabout. 112
  • 108. Where arrow(s) are marked on the road before or in a roundabout you must drive in the direction of the arrow(s). Make sure you obey them. FIGURE 45 113
  • 109. FREEWAYS Exiting a freeway Overtaking lane Be extra alert on freeways as • Watch for signs that tell you As freeway speeds are traffic travels at high speed. that you are approaching an often high and the traffic You must not drive in the exit ramp. Exit lanes are is heavy, there are special right lane unless overtaking or usually on the left. rules that apply when unless all lanes are congested. • Maintain your speed and driving on a freeway. This rule also applies to the signal your intention to exit right lane used by all traffic, if Entering a freeway well in advance. the lane to the right of that is a • Adjust your speed as you transit lane. • Adjust your speed once you drive along the entry ramp have entered the exit ramp. to match that of the If you miss your exit, continue freeway traffic. travelling on the freeway until • Clearly indicate your A TRANSIT LANE is you reach the next exit. Do not marked by a Transit Lane intentions. reverse on a freeway. sign, and may only be • Give way to traffic on used by public buses, the freeway. motorcycles, taxis or where applicable, vehicles • Where there is a large carrying at least two people. enough gap, merge smoothly with the freeway traffic. 114
  • 110. DRIVING SAFELY Stopping IN TUNNELS You must not stop on a freeway except in an emergency. If you Information for must stop, use the emergency learner drivers stopping lane only. Put on your Things you need to be aware hazard warning lights. Start tollway sign of when driving in tunnels. Variable speed zones • Remove sunglasses before You are entering a tolled section Electronic variable signs on entering a tunnel. of road. freeways indicate reduced speed limits at high risk times. • Turn on your head lights, so that your vehicle is more visible. • Tunnels usually have variable speed limits. Lower limits apply when traffic is congested or when an incident has occurred (e.g. a Tollways crash or broken down vehicle). Look for speed limit Advance warning tollway TOLLWAYS are sections signs and stay within the limit of road which the driver entrance sign in accordance with must pay to use. conditions. Signs are displayed to You are about to enter the advise drivers that they tollway from a non-tollway road. will soon be entering If you do not want to enter the the tollway. tollway, take the next exit. 115
  • 111. SHARING THE • Check and obey variable • Turn your car radio on. message and lane control Tunnels have re-broadcast ROAD SAFELY signs that provide important systems that convey safety As a driver you share the information about safety and and traffic information to traffic conditions. drivers via their radio and road with many other the tunnel public people: • Stay out of closed lanes. announcement system. Even if you can’t see the • other drivers of cars, problem, always obey signs • Do not stop in a tunnel vans, trucks, buses and controller instructions. except in an emergency or if and trams directed by the tunnel • Lane changing causes many controller. Try to drive out • pedestrians crashes on busy arterial of a tunnel even if your roads. Avoid lane changing • motorcyclists vehicle is damaged or has a and overtaking while • cyclists. mechanical malfunction. travelling through tunnels. • Do not reverse in a tunnel. Co-operative driving • If you really need to We all have places to get to and overtake another vehicle • Do not enter a tunnel if your want to arrive there safely. The (e.g. it is broken down) vehicle is very low on fuel. best way to make this happen is make sure you are clear of to co-operate and help each all other traffic and it is safe. other. It doesn’t really hurt or Always use your indicators waste any time to let somebody to show your intention to in from a side street, when the merge or change lanes. traffic is crawling along. 116
  • 112. • two lanes have to merge Other simple strategies include: Keeping your cool when driving • not blocking intersections • the left lane ends • always using your signals • extra lanes exist just before Co-operate to Road rage is dangerous and when turning or changing and after intersections illegal. It involves people losing keep your cool lanes their cool, perhaps in response • overtaking lanes or divided and you’ll be to a mistake or action of • not following too closely roads end behind another driver. You can avoid • cars are parked and there is a winner road rage easily. • smoothly controlling your not enough room for two speed rather than driving in vehicles to pass. • The fundamental rule is don’t a fast start/stop manner retaliate – it’s never worth it! In these places, the need • changing lanes correctly for co-operative driving is at • If you make a mistake while its greatest. • slowing down when driving, acknowledge it. Co-operative driving approaching road work sites. • Don’t take the mistakes of helps you to be a ‘green Remember that co-operation is other drivers personally - HOT TIP driver’. There not just limited to other car remember it’s a mistake not a is a relationship between driving drivers. You are also sharing personal attack. style and the impact your the road with pedestrians, driving has on the environment. • Keep your cool and keep cyclists, motorcyclists, trucks, Drive smoothly and avoid fast your distance! buses and trams. start/stop driving – you’ll save • Drive co-operatively and fuel and pollute less (and save There are times and places consider the other people on money as well!). Even better leave when co-operation is essential. the road! the car at home and walk, ride These include places where: your bike or use public transport! 117
  • 113. Sharing the road with Signalling your moves Here are some of the ways you can signal your intentions. other motorists Before turning or changing lanes you must signal for 1 Using your indicators long enough to give sufficient Keeping to the left You must use your indicators warning to other drivers and On multi-lane roads with a when: pedestrians. In 60 km/h zones, speed limit over 80 km/h, you it is best to signal for at least • turning to the right or left must keep out of the right lane 30 metres or about the length unless you are: • changing lanes or line of two houses and driveways of traffic • overtaking before turning or changing lanes. • overtaking • turning right Check that your indicator • making U-turns • making a U-turn is off after you have made • pulling into and out of • avoiding an obstruction, or HOT TIP your turn or lane change parking spots – it may not have turned off by • traffic is congested. itself. If it is left on, other drivers • leaving a continuing road You must also keep out of the will think you intend to turn. which curves to the left right lane where a Keep Left or right Before moving from a stationary Unless Overtaking sign applies. position at the side of the road • leaving a roundabout or a parking area in the middle (if practicable) of the road, you must signal for • moving to the left or right at least five seconds. from a stationary position. 118
  • 114. Watch other vehicles’ indicators 2 Using your brake lights and make sure they are doing Every time your foot touches what is indicated. Sometimes an The ability to the brake pedal, your brake indicator has not cancelled from lights glow, warning other blend in with the last turn, or has been put on drivers you are slowing down. too early. Make sure you traffic comes with Likewise, you will need to slow indicate in such a way that your down when the brake lights on experience and signal cannot be misleading. the vehicle in front of you are reflects glowing red. So give lots of warning by braking early and an awareness Use indicators even slowing gradually. if there is no-one else of what around – it’s the 3 Making eye contact other drivers person you cannot As well as watching out for see who can be the reasonably expect most dangerous. indicators, you can get an idea of what another person might do by making eye contact. To make sure another driver FIGURE 46 knows you are there, try and These vehicles are signalling make eye contact, especially at their moves, but could be heading intersections. Look at other for trouble as vehicle A’s signal drivers, they may well be could be misleading. looking at you to see that you know they are there! 119
  • 115. High-beam headlights 4 Using your headlights Don’t be dazzled by high-beam and tail lights Headlights on high-beam Look to the left side of the road enable you to see further. Headlights help you to see at and drive towards the left of Because headlights on high night. Headlights and tail lights your lane if a car with high- beam may dazzle the oncoming help others to see you in poor beams on is approaching. If driver’s eyes, you must ‘dip’ light conditions. Your headlights dazzled by the lights, slow them to low-beam when another and tail lights must be on down and pull over until your vehicle is within 200 metres. between sunset and sunrise. eyes recover. You must also dip your head- They must also be on in lights when driving 200 metres hazardous weather conditions or less behind another vehicle. where there is reduced visibility. If the street lights are on, your lights should also be on. HOT TIP FIGURE 47 120
  • 116. Using emergency signals How to overtake safely Driving in dangerous conditions or situations If someone is overtaking you, If your vehicle breaks down Always make a you must not increase your You may use hazard warning on the road vehicle’s speed. lights if you are driving in final headcheck Make sure other drivers can dangerous weather conditions, see your vehicle and stop in Here are some tips to reduce before changing such as fog, or smoke, or if you time. If possible, pull out of the your risk when overtaking: are driving slowly and likely to lanes or overtaking traffic flow. If you can’t get obstruct other vehicles or completely off the road, try to Overtaking on a two way road pedestrians. You must not stop where people have a clear • Check the centre of the road operate rear fog lights unless view of you and your vehicle. markings (see Road markings, driving in fog or hazardous Don’t stop just over a hill or just page 86). If there are double weather conditions. around a curve. continuous white lines or double white lines with a Turn on your hazard Warning others of your approach continuous line closest to you, warning lights to warn You must only use your horn if you must not overtake. other drivers. If your HOT TIP it is necessary to warn other vehicle doesn’t have hazard • Make sure you have a clear road users of the approach or warning lights use your left view of any approaching position of your vehicle. indicator instead. Lift your bonnet traffic and that there is or boot lid to show other drivers enough space to overtake you are in trouble. safely. Remember that it is hard to estimate the speed of approaching vehicles. 121
  • 117. • You must keep a safe • Check that the vehicle in Overtaking where lanes distance when overtaking are marked front or behind is not also and not return into the line about to pull out to overtake. When a road has lane markings, of traffic until you are a you may overtake in the left • Use your right indicator to let sufficient distance past the lane but remember you are others know you are about to vehicle you are overtaking. less visible to the driver of the overtake. A vehicle behind One way to know if it vehicle you are going past if may want to overtake both is safe to return to you overtake on the left. you and the vehicle in front. your lane is when you HOT TIP • If you are not sure you have see both headlights of Overtaking where there are enough time, just wait. A few the vehicle you have overtaken in oncoming vehicles seconds or minutes could your rear view mirror. Never underestimate the space save your life. and time you will need to safely Overtaking where there are no • Never overtake if the road is overtake when there are lane markings not wide enough for you to oncoming vehicles. It is hard to stay completely on the sealed When a road has no lane judge the speed at which they part of the road, unless you markings, you must overtake are travelling. Be careful. If in can do so at a low speed. a vehicle on its right side. doubt – don’t pull out. You must not overtake either • When safe, accelerate and a moving or stationary vehicle overtake the vehicle, then on the left, unless the vehicle is indicate left when safe to turning right, or making a U-turn return to your lane. You from the centre of the road, and must not exceed the speed has its right indicator flashing. limit at any time. 122
  • 118. Sharing the road At children’s crossings Overtaking where there are hills with pedestrians and curves Pedestrians don’t always do If your view is blocked, don’t what you expect. You should pull out. Remember, you must watch out for them at all times. not overtake when there are Here are some places where double unbroken white lines, or you should take extra care. double white lines with a More information on giving way continuous line closest to you. to pedestrians can be found on page 96. Overtaking at intersections, rail crossings, shopping centre entrances and pedestrian crossings PEDESTRIANS include not only people on These are never good places to foot but also those on overtake. Wait until you are on wheeled devices such as skateboards, rollerblades, a clearer section of road. You and wheelchairs/motorised must not overtake another mobility devices. vehicle stopped at a pedestrian FIGURE 48 A person pushing or children’s crossing. a bicycle is also Always approach a children’s considered to be a pedestrian. crossing at a speed which will let you stop. You must stop at flagged children’s crossings if a 123
  • 119. lights at intersections. However, pedestrian is on or entering the At pedestrian crossings at some locations, drivers may crossing, even if there is no Always approach pedestrian proceed when the yellow light crossing supervisor present. crossings at a speed which will starts flashing, provided they You must not proceed until the let you stop. Not all pedestrians give way to any pedestrian still pedestrian has left the crossing. look before they step onto on the crossing. These You must also stop if a hand crossings, so take care. You crossings have When Flashing held Stop sign is displayed. must give way to any pedestrian Give Way To Pedestrians signs. on a pedestrian crossing. At intersections and traffic lights When turning, you must give way to pedestrians crossing the road you are entering. Elderly people may not cross the road in the time allowed by the lights. Be patient and wait for them. Pedestrian traffic lights are often located away from intersections to enable pedestrians to cross roads FIGURE 49 safely. These traffic lights generally operate the same as 124
  • 120. At safety zones, tram stops and bus stops A SAFETY ZONE is the Slow down when approaching area of the road at or near a tram stop with safety zones, tram stops and safety zone signs, and bus stops. There is always the a traffic island or risk of pedestrians getting off a dividing strip. tram or bus and crossing the road without looking. Pedestrians are often hard to see when stepping out suddenly from behind or in front of a bus or tram. It is also a good idea when you are waiting to pick up FIGURE 50 a bus passenger to park on the Slow down when approaching same side of the road that the safety zones, tram stops and bus bus will be travelling. stops. There is always the risk of More information on Sharing pedestrians getting off a tram or the road with trams can be bus and crossing the road found on pages 97 and 129. without looking. 125
  • 121. When coming out On paths of driveways You must give way to any vehicles or pedestrians on a path which crosses the road if you are facing a Give Way or Stop sign. At shopping centres and car parks At shopping centres, car parks and other busy places there is a greater chance of pedestrians crossing the road unexpectedly or stepping out from behind or FIGURE 52 between vehicles without looking. Slow down and be alert. You must give way to any vehicles or pedestrians when Near schools FIGURE 51 leaving any private property. At tram stops where there is no Take care when driving near If you cannot see if anyone is schools especially at times safety zone between you and the coming, sound your horn and when children are arriving tram, you must stop and give then drive out very slowly. or leaving. Watch out for way to all pedestrians walking to Watch out for children riding on 40 km/h or 60 km/h speed and from the kerb. bicycles or skateboards. zones outside schools. 126
  • 122. Beware of children Vision impaired Sharing the road coming out from with cyclists and Be aware of pedestrians with between parked cars – HOT TIP motorcyclists poor or impaired vision who they are often hard to see over may be using a white cane or the top of cars. You need to be especially alert white walking stick. They may for cyclists and motorcyclists, not see your vehicle clearly or as they are more at risk than Where children are walking be able to judge the speed of drivers. Cyclists and motor- or playing your vehicle. cyclists have the same rights Beware of children darting out and responsibilities as you. So Near hotels or nightclubs suddenly from between parked give them space. They need to cars near playgrounds or Pedestrians who have been keep well clear of parked cars anywhere you see children drinking may be impaired by in case doors are opened walking or playing. alcohol. They may not pay carelessly – so give them room. attention to the traffic before They are entitled to ride two Near libraries and senior crossing the road. abreast (up to 1.5 metres citizens’ clubs apart); this makes them easier Wet weather to see. Be alert and take extra care in areas which elderly people Pedestrians may hurry and take Give cyclists and motorcyclists frequent, such as libraries, risks in the wet. Slow down and their own space. You should senior citizens’ clubs and take extra care in these overtake cyclists or motor- homes for the elderly. conditions. cyclists only if you can safely move to the right, leaving at least one metre clearance. 127
  • 123. large vehicles which are Never share the lane with overtaking them, such as cyclists or motorcyclists if you Motorcycles accelerate trucks and buses. Only move cannot leave this clearance. faster than cars. What left or turn left from behind a looks like a safe gap in traffic, may not be if large vehicle when you have there is a motorcycle a clear view and are sure that among the cars. the road is clear. Watch out for cyclists more than 1 metre and motorcyclists Bicycles and motorcycles are smaller than cars and therefore harder to see and are more FIGURE 53 likely to be hidden in your blind Allow at least one metre spot. Keep a good lookout for clearance between your vehicle them, particularly before FIGURE 54 and cyclists or motorcyclists. turning or entering an intersection or changing lanes. Motorcyclists and cyclists Seven out of ten Intersections are where most should also keep a safe distance motorcycle crashes motorcycle accidents happen from other vehicles and not happen at intersections. because vehicles turning left or travel through small gaps Remember: right cut across in front of the Always ‘Look Bike’. between lines of traffic. rider. Riders can be hidden by 128
  • 124. Sharing the road • You must not pass on the right of a tram unless tram with trams tracks are at or near the far Remember these general rules left side of the road. about sharing the road with • Buses travelling along trams: tram tracks must be treated • Do not overtake a stopped as trams. tram. You must stop level with the rear of the tram and Broken yellow lines next to wait for people to get on and tram lines off. You may only overtake a These lines on roads give trams stopped tram if there are no priority at all times. You can pedestrians on the road and FIGURE 55 cross a broken yellow line and you are facing a green traffic drive on tram tracks at any Broken yellow lines next to light or if a uniformed tram time, however you must not tram lines means the tram has employee signals you through. delay a tram. If you want to turn priority at all times However, you must not right, allow the tram to pass you exceed 10 km/h while passing or keep going and turn right the tram. further on. Do not pull out in • You must give way to a tram front of a tram and do not delay moving into or across a a tram. roundabout. 129
  • 125. These tram lanes are in Full time tram lanes road, to avoid an obstruction, operation at all times and the make a right turn or a U-turn, tram lane sign will not show any as long as you do not delay a times of operation. The same tram or travel in the lane for rules apply to these tram lanes more than 100 metres. You as to those with only a must not delay trams even continuous yellow line. You may during the times when the tram enter the lane to drive across an lane is not operating. intersection, or make a right hand turn or a U-turn, however you must not delay a tram. A TRAM LANE is a part of the road with Part time tram lanes tram tracks that is marked along the left Part time tram lanes have tram side of the tracks by a FIGURE 56 lane signs over the lane which continuous yellow line, and is indicated by a indicate the hours of operation Full time tram lanes have Tram Lane sign. and a continuous yellow line to continuous yellow lines next the left of the tracks. You are to the tram lines. Reflective not allowed to travel in a tram markers are used to show lane during the times it is in that the tram lane operates operation (as shown on the at all times. tram lane signs). You may use a tram lane to enter or leave the 130
  • 126. Fairway signs Fairway and common sense If a parked or double parked A Fairway sign may be used vehicle blocks your lane, you in addition to the Tram Lane may not be able to avoid driving signs and yellow lines, to warn in the tram lane. You won’t be of a section of road where trams breaking the law, but move have priority at the times marked to your own lane as soon as on the Tram Lane signs. possible to avoid delaying a tram. Trams are longer and heavier than cars and it takes them longer to safely stop. So, when you are overtaking a tram or FIGURE 57 changing lanes, don’t pull into Part time tram lanes have the empty space immediately in continuous yellow lines next to front of a tram. This is their Fairway sign Tram lane sign the tram lane lines and tram ‘safety margin’. Be careful and lane signs over the lane leave plenty of room. indicating the hours of operation. 131
  • 127. Sharing the road Sharing the road with police and with buses emergency vehicles On some roads, buses are given You must get out of the way of special lanes. Only public buses a police or emergency vehicle or other vehicles as specified on when its siren is on or it is the sign may use these lanes. displaying red or blue flashing However, you may drive in a Watch out for buses pulling out lights. Give way and stop if bus lane for no more than 100 from the kerb necessary (despite any other metres if it is necessary to: In a built-up area you must rules), even if you have a green • turn left give way to a bus displaying a traffic light. These vehicles Give Way To Buses sign and have exemptions to break rules • to overtake a vehicle that is signalling that it is about to in the case of emergencies and turning right or making a pull out from the kerb into the may act unpredictably. You U-turn from the centre of left lane. More information on must also stop if the twin red the road built-up areas can be found on lights outside a Fire Station or • when first entering or leaving page 76. Ambulance Station are flashing. the road. 132
  • 128. Sharing the road Don’t cut in Trucks pick up and deliver goods with trucks and other Trucks are longer and heavier If you cannot heavy vehicles than cars and it takes them Be prepared for trucks that are longer to stop safely. So, when entering or leaving driveways, see the driver in Here are some tips about you are overtaking a truck or roads or loading docks to pick sharing the road with trucks of the truck’s rear changing lanes, don’t pull in to up and deliver goods. any size. the empty space immediately in vision mirror, Sometimes this will require front of a truck. This is their extra patience and courtesy on Blind spots – the truck ‘safety margin’. your part to let them do so be seen, be safe driver cannot safely. Always be prepared to If you can’t see the All vehicles have blind spots allow extra room for a truck to whole front of the truck see you where the driver loses sight of swing in or out of delivery HOT TIP in your rear vision mirror vehicles around them. The points. If possible make eye before you pull into the same blind spot is greater for truck contact with the driver to let lane, there may not be enough drivers. If you cannot see the them know you have seen them. room for the truck to stop safely the truck’s external mirrors, behind you if the traffic suddenly the truck driver cannot see you. stops; it may hit you or another This should be a ‘no stay spot’. vehicle. Be careful and leave Either accelerate to overtake if yourself plenty of room when turning safe to do so, or decrease speed in front of an oncoming truck. and pull back to where you can be seen. More information on blind spots can be found on page 38. 133
  • 129. A Long Vehicle sign is The nature of trucks displayed on a truck that is Trucks are bigger and heavier much longer than normal. than cars and slower to It will take longer to overtake, accelerate especially when and will need extra room to starting, merging into traffic or safely stop behind you. Make going uphill. You need to allow Some oversized trucks are sure you can see the entire for this if you see a truck supported by pilot vehicles front of the truck and a little pulling into traffic up ahead of and VicRoads Transport Safety space around it in your rear you. Be prepared to overtake Services vehicles. Pilot vehicles vision mirror before you pull if it’s safe, or to reduce speed provide advance warning to in after you overtake. if necessary. other road users of the A Do Not Overtake Turning presence of OVERSIZE Vehicle sign tells you that the Signs on trucks vehicles and VicRoads vehicles truck is at least 7.5 metres long manage traffic. An Oversize sign, sometimes and requires more turning accompanied by flashing amber room to negotiate corners, lights, is displayed on a truck intersections or roundabouts. which is longer or wider than Pilot Trucks displaying this sign may Vehicle usual. The load may even need part or all of two lanes to overhang into your lane. Take turn and can legally do so (see notice and watch what is page 108 for more information). different about it and adjust VicRoads This sign tells you that you Transport your driving to suit. Remember, Safety must not overtake alongside amber flashing lights always Services a turning truck. Vehicle indicate caution is necessary. 134
  • 130. Sharing the road Farm animals on roads with animals A Give Way To Stock sign may be displayed on country roads Each year there are a number to enable stock such as cows or of serious crashes involving sheep to move across or along horses and other farm animals. the road. Horses Slow down and watch out for horses being led or driven Blind spots are increased on the road – leave as much when the truck is turning space as possible to allow for HOT TIP and the chances of unexpected movements by damage to your vehicle, injury or the horse. death is increased. Stay where you Never use your car horn can be seen so you can be safe. around horses – it may startle even the most placid horse and could cause it to bolt and cause a crash. 135
  • 131. Warning signs are also displayed Railway level on the approaches to permanent crossings stock crossings. Look and listen for trains when there is a crossing ahead. Drive slowly, at a speed which will allow you to stop if necessary. The following information also applies to tram level crossings. Obey the tram level crossing signs. When a Give Way To Stock sign is displayed, you must travel at Gates, booms and a safe speed that will enable you flashing lights to slow down or stop to avoid a collision with an animal either at or near the sign or within the distance shown on the sign. When a Stop sign is displayed at a stock crossing, you must stop before reaching the crossing and must not proceed until all animals have crossed the road. 136
  • 132. Where there are gates, booms, booms or flashing lights, take Look both ways for trains or flashing lights at railway extra care. Slow down. Look If you have stopped for a train, level crossings, you must not and listen for trains in both don’t move off until you have cross until signals have stopped directions. Usually there are checked that another train is flashing and the gates or booms warning signs placed well in not following or coming the are fully open. advance of these crossings. other way. Keep clear of the Following other signs train tracks or directions If there is traffic stopped on the other side of the railway crossing, you must not cross unless there is room for your vehicle on the other side – otherwise you could be stuck on the tracks in the path of an oncoming train. There may be other signs you Where there are no gates, must obey at railway level booms or flashing lights crossings. These are usually At some railway level crossings, either Give Way or Stop signs. particularly in the country, You should also stop if a railway where there are no gates, employee signals you to stop. 137
  • 133. PARKING There are three types of parking: Stopping or parking Parking is not as easy regulations apply even 1 Parallel parking if you have stopped or as it seems. So that you parked your car and This is the usual way to park have your hazard don’t cause problems for warning lights on. unless signs tell you otherwise. others or risk parking fines, You must park completely If signs say it is illegal you need to observe and within the parking bay, in line for you to be stopping or parking at a place, with and close to the kerb. interpret many types of having your hazard parking signs. warning lights on will not change this. less than 3 metres A person must not cause When you park beside a hazard to any person the road look out for or vehicle by opening a cyclists before opening door of a vehicle, leaving your car door. Look out a door of a vehicle open, more for cyclists before you or exiting a vehicle. than drive out of your 1 metre parking space. more than 3 metres FIGURE 58 138
  • 134. If parking bays are not marked, 2 Angle parking 3 Centre of road parking you must: • leave one metre between you and the vehicles in front and behind • park with your vehicle facing the direction of travel of vehicles next to where your vehicle is parked • not unreasonably obstruct the path of other vehicles or pedestrians. FIGURE 59 FIGURE 60 You must park at the angle You must drive in forwards indicated by the signs or marked and drive out forwards. bays. Where no angle is indicated Do not reverse out of these by signs or marked bays, you spots, unless a sign indicates must park at a 45°angle. you may do so. 139
  • 135. hours of 9am and 4pm from Parking control signs A sign with the letter ‘P’ only Monday to Friday. Outside that means you can park without a time period parking is allowed time limit. Parking signs with no restrictions. Parking signs tell you whether or not you can park, for how long, The 1P sign on the right during which hours, and if you indicates a one hour time limit have to pay. Some parking signs during the hours of 9am to provide more details than others. 12noon on Saturdays. Any other time you are free to park in that area with no restrictions. Any number next to the ‘P’ Meter parking indicates the amount of time you can park. For example, the An individual parking meter sign above left indicates a five next to your vehicle means you minute parking limit, whilst the must pay as instructed on the sign on the right shows a one parking sign or meter. 2 2 hour limit. A group meter for the parking The parking limits apply during area nearby means you must the periods shown on the sign. purchase a ticket. Follow the For example, the five minute instructions on the meter or parking sign on the left means sign. Some group meters print General parking signs that parking is allowed for a five out a ticket you must display on minute period between the your dashboard. 140
  • 136. reserved parking spots without Other group meters require No Stopping signs a valid disabled permit. your parking bay number These tell you that you must not (marked on the road) and stop at the kerb for any reason. Where not to park electronically record your fee paid and time allowed. No Parking signs All meters are checked regularly by parking inspectors. Parking for disabled You are allowed two minutes in a No Parking area only if you remain within three metres of the vehicle and you are picking up or dropping off passengers; Parking bays with this sign or otherwise if you stop, you are that are indicated by a road considered to have parked, marking have been set aside to even if you stay in the vehicle. allow disabled persons easy access to places such as shops, libraries or community centres. You must not park in these 141
  • 137. goods, and public passenger Clearways On the signs the letter ‘C’ vehicles or taxis that are means clearway – you must Clearways help traffic move dropping off or picking up not stop here for any reason faster during peak times. passengers (30 minute limit or during the hours and days as shown on the sign). noted on the sign. Zone signs Clearway sign used at Truck Zone sign start of clearway Only for trucks with a gross vehicle mass over 4.5 tonnes. Loading Zone sign No time limit is applied for a Unless another limit is specified truck loading or unloading on the sign, a loading zone is goods. only for goods carrying vehicles with a ‘G’ code included on their registration labels, signed delivery and courier vehicles, trucks while This sign is used within dropping off or picking up the clearway 142
  • 138. Tow away zones Bus Zone sign Taxi Zone sign Only for public buses. Only for taxis. Permit Zone sign Works sign Only for vehicles displaying a Only for vehicles engaged in valid permit for that zone issued construction work in or near by the relevant authority. the zone. Typical use of Tow Away Zone signs 143
  • 139. • on the wrong side of the A Tow Away zone means your General stopping and road, ie. on the far right side vehicle will be towed away if parking rules of a two-way road you park at this spot during the You must not leave a vehicle times specified. Not only do you • on a footpath or reservation stationary: pay a parking fine, you also need (unless the vehicle is a to pay a fee to reclaim your car. • double parked motorcycle or bicycle) • where there is a Keep Clear • in a bus lane road marking • half in, half out of a • within an intersection No Parking or (except on the continuous No Stopping area side of a continuing road of a • opposite continuous double T-intersection) white lines • on freeways (except in an • opposite a continuous white emergency stopping lane) line next to a broken white • across a lane or private line with the continuous line driveway closer to you • where you would leave less than three metres of road clear for traffic 144
  • 140. • within three metres of an • within 20 metres of: • within 10 metres of: Australia Post mail box – both sides of an intersection – an intersection without • within three metres of the with traffic lights traffic lights departure side of a crossing – the approach side of a – the approach side of a with traffic lights not at an tram stop sign bus stop intersection – the departure side of a – the approach side of a • within one metre of a fire bus stop sign children’s crossing hydrant – both sides of a safety zone – both sides of a level crossing • on a curve or crest outside a built-up area unless visible – the approach side of – the approach side of a for 100 metres from behind, traffic lights not at an pedestrian crossing that is or unless signs allow intersection not at an intersection • next to a continuous yellow – the departure side of a edge line. pedestrian crossing that is not at an intersection – the departure side of a children’s crossing 145
  • 141. A licence or learner permit may (over $3,300 or four months PENALTIES be suspended or cancelled as a imprisonment for a first offence All traffic offences result of: and mandatory imprisonment will result in some type for up to two years for a second • a Court conviction of penalty. offence). • a Traffic Infringement Notice These include monetary fines, The following provides a • accumulation of demerit points loss of your learner permit or summary of the actions that licence, or you may be taken • action taken by the Sheriff’s may arise from a traffic offence. to court. Office Contact VicRoads for further information. • action taken by VicRoads. Many offences also attract demerit points. If a licence or learner permit is Suspend not held, a person may be In most serious cases prison disqualified from obtaining a The licence or learner permit is sentences may be imposed. licence or a learner permit for a withdrawn for a specified Remember that a good driving specified period. period. You cannot drive during record is required if you are to this period. In most cases the A person who has their licence progress through the original licence or learner or learner permit suspended or Graduated Licensing System. permit is returned. However, if cancelled by a Court, a Traffic A good driving record means the suspension has resulted in a Infringement Notice, the you avoid having your licence change to the conditions of the Sheriff’s Office or by VicRoads cancelled or suspended, as licence, a new licence will need is not permitted to drive. Severe well as avoiding any drink to be issued (see Penalties for and/or drug driving offences. penalties exist if driving while probationary licences holders, suspended, unlicensed, or page 148). whilst disqualified 146
  • 142. Cancel Disqualify Sheriff’s Office A licence or learner permit that Permission to apply for a The role of the Sheriff’s Office You need is cancelled is no longer valid. licence or learner permit is is to enforce Court Orders, You cannot drive. Once the withdrawn (if one is not held) collect fines and civil debts. never know period of cancellation is over, as a result of a cancellation or This may include the seizure about these you will need to apply to have suspension. and sale of assets, licence your licence or learner permit suspension or, as a final option, things… reissued before you can start imprisonment. Imprisonment but that’s driving again. In some cases, a Court may Demerit points up to you Reissue of the licence or impose a jail term as well as a Demerit points are one type of learner permit may require one monetary fine. and the way penalty that will be recorded or more of the following actions you decide against your driver licence or to be completed: Infringements Court learner permit when you to drive • knowledge of road law and/ The role of the Infringements commit certain traffic offences or practical driving test Court is to administratively anywhere in Australia. resolve unpaid infringement • an order from a Court to Demerit points range from notices. These offences be relicensed one to ten depending on the generally have fixed penalties severity of the offence. • an education course to and include parking offences be completed and driving offences. • other requirements as specified by VicRoads. (i.e. payment of licence fee) 147
  • 143. Further information and a full Learner and probationary Penalties for list of offences and demerit drivers who incur 5 or more probationary licence points can be found at VicRoads demerit points in any 12 month holders website: period may have their licence If your first probationary licence suspended for at least 3 months. Penalties for learner is suspended or cancelled during permit holders If your licence is not suspended the P1 licence, your licence you would have chosen the will be restricted. Restrictions If a learner permit is cancelled twelve month bond, where any may be imposed on carrying or suspended, it may affect the further demerit points lead to at passengers in your vehicle for permit holder’s eligibility to least 6 months licence the balance of your P1 period. apply for a licence, as a learner suspension. The probationary period (P1 or permit must be held for P2) will also be extended. If you get 12 or more demerit continuous period of 12 months points in any 3 year period, you immediately before applying for If your probationary licence is may have your licence or a licence, for those under 21 cancelled, your licence will be learner permit suspended for at years of age. For those aged 21 reissued as a probationary least 3 months. but under 25 years the period is licence for a further three or 6 months, and it is 3 months if four year term depending on This gives drivers the you are aged 25 years or over. your age. opportunity to learn from their repeat mistakes, but makes licence loss a reality for persistent offenders. 148
  • 144. Penalties for full LEGAL Change of name licence holders RESPONSIBILITIES You must notify VicRoads When a full licence is cancelled, within 14 days when your name As the holder of a licence a full licence will be reissued has changed. when all relicensing or learner permit, there This can only be done in person requirements have been met. at any VicRoads Customer are a number of additional If a Court Order is required to Service Centre. It must be legal responsibilities you be produced due to an alcohol supported by original must fulfil. or drug driving related offence, documents along with either then a three year zero BAC a photo licence or documents restriction will be imposed on that prove your identity. Carry your licence the licence when it is reissued. The following documents are You must carry your acceptable for a change of name: probationary licence whenever • Marriage Certificate (issued you drive. by the Registrar of Births, If you are under 26 years of age Deaths and Marriages in you must carry your licence at Australia) all times when driving. • Divorce Papers All learner drivers must carry • Deed Poll (pre 1 November their learner permit at all times 1986 in Victoria) when driving. 149
  • 145. • Change of Name Registration Change of address Notification of a (after 1 November 1986 in disability You must notify VicRoads Victoria) within 14 days when your You must notify VicRoads if • Guardianship Order residential or postal address you have an illness or disability has changed. You may notify that may impair your ability to • Adoption Paper your change of address in one drive safely. • Birth Certificate of the following ways: You will need to provide a (issued after 26 June 2000 in current medical certificate from Victoria shows the change of your treating medical 1 By calling VicRoads name details on the back of practitioner that states your Telephone numbers can be the Certificate). fitness to drive and provides found on pages 8 – 9. details of your illness or 2 By attending in person at disability. Standard medical or any VicRoads Customer eyesight report forms are Service Centre available from any VicRoads See the list on the inside Customer Service Centre or by back cover. calling VicRoads. These forms are also available on the 3 On the VicRoads VicRoads website. homepage 150
  • 146. Air and noise CRASH What you must do pollution after a crash RESPONSIBILITIES You must ensure any vehicle • Stop immediately If you are involved in a you drive meets relevant air • Give assistance to any and noise emmission standards. crash causing death or injured person Drivers of offending vehicles • Provide name, address, injury and do not stop and may be fined or taken to Court registration number details give assistance, you can be and the owner may be issued and the vehicle owner’s name with a notice to repair the fined up to $8000 and/or to the other parties involved vehicle. in the crash, or their be imprisoned for up to two Hoon driving representative, and to the years. You will also lose police (if in attendance) Police have the power to your licence for at least • If anyone is injured and the impound motor vehicles for at two years. police are not in attendance, least 48 hours if used for you must report the crash offences such as excessive If you are involved in a to the nearest open police speeding, and for improper use station crash there are certain of a motor vehicle, causing loss • If there is any property of traction or excessive noise or things you must do damage and the owner (or smoke. immediately after police) are not present, you must report the crash to the crash. the nearest open police station. 151
  • 147. There are other things you FIRST AID should do at a crash scene AFTER A CRASH To call an ambulance, to prevent other people police or fire brigade, getting hurt, and to help those phone 000. The following first aid people involved in the crash To call a tow truck, information is based on (see First aid after a crash on phone 13 1176. this page). current Red Cross teaching There are emergency phones on in line with Australian the side of the road on most Resuscitation Council freeways throughout Victoria. guidelines. These are called VicRoads ‘Help Phones’ and can be used 24 hours a day for vehicle These guidelines are breakdowns or any other kind intended to provide basic of emergency. The phones principles to assist at a are directly linked to the VicRoads Traffic Control and crash site and/or attempt Communications Centre. resuscitation. 152
  • 148. To learn basic first aid such Applying first aid Read these simple instructions now and keep this handbook in after a crash as CPR (Cardiopulmonary your car. Someone else may use Resuscitation) you will it to help you in an accident. Many of us may need treatment need to undertake an after a road crash at some stage of our lives. Whether or not we appropriate course. If you are at a crash survive until trained help site, try to remain arrives may well depend on calm and... somebody’s willingness to give • remember that acting quickly first aid. is important 3 things that could • if necessary, call for an save a life... ambulance, or send someone to call them 1. Keeping a person’s • ask if there is anybody airway open and clear trained in first aid at the 2. Making sure that they crash site and if not, and you are breathing are first on the crash scene, follow the following steps. 3. Stopping heavy bleeding 153
  • 149. 3. Check the casualties 1. Survey the scene • Is the area safe for you to Four ways you can help Check airway casualties after a crash: - open the casualty’s mouth and approach? • Ask bystanders to help make check for any loose or 1. Survey the scene the area safe obstructive objects eg loose 2. Make the crash scene safe dentures, vomit, blood etc., • Count the number of people and protect the area clear from airway who are injured - if airway is clear, tilt the head 3. Check the casualties - check • Call an ambulance (dial 000) airway, breathing and signs back, and check for breathing or send someone to call them of life • Ask if there is anybody Check breathing 4. Stop the heavy bleeding - look for the rise and fall of the trained in first aid at the chest crash site. - listen for breathing 2. Make the crash - feel for the casualty’s breath scene safe and on your cheek - continue to maintain an open protect the area • Position your car with its airway - if the casualty is not breathing hazard lights flashing, to begin cardiopulmonary warn other motorists, or use resuscitation (see page 156). headlights to light up the scene if necessary. Check for signs of life • Send someone down the road (movement, breathing, to warn approaching traffic, colour, etc) and turn off the ignition in damaged vehicles 154
  • 150. For conscious casualties: For conscious, breathing For unconscious, breathing casualties outside the casualties still in the • Talk to the casualty, tell them vehicle: vehicle: your name and reassure • If you are certain that the them • Keep a close eye on them to vehicle and surrounds are make sure their airway is • If there is no response, safe, and the casualty is clear and they are still gently touch the casualty on either conscious and/or breathing, whilst waiting for the shoulders, give a simple breathing, they do not have the ambulance to arrive command eg. “squeeze my to be unnecessarily removed hands” to see if they can • If the casualty is lying on the until specialist help arrives, respond ground, it is vital to keep unless circumstances them on their side in a stable arise, ie: • Check for and control any position heavy bleeding (see Stop - they stop breathing heavy bleeding, page 157) • With their head tilted back - their condition worsens and face pointed down in - it is no longer safe for them order to maintain an open to stay in the vehicle. airway. For casualties unconscious If a casualty inside or outside a vehicle must be moved to and NOT breathing: escape danger, or for you to Even if the casualty is injured, give CPR, do so carefully and you will need to remove them gently because of the risk of spinal injury or increased from the vehicle to perform the bleeding following steps on next page: 155
  • 151. 3. Breathe into the casualty 6. Check to see if casualty is Cardiopulmonary (CPR) until the chest begins to rise now breathing by watching Resuscitation for chest rise and fall, whilst With casualty on their back, at the same time, checking check airway... for signs of life. 1. Tilt the head back fully If the casualty is still not to open with airway breathing... 7. Begin CPR and continue until Emergency Services arrive 4. Remove your mouth (make sure the chest falls) Note If performing CPR on 5. Give another normal breath children, use minimal head tilt and small breaths. For infants, give small puffs and do NOT use head tilt. 2. Cover the casualty’s mouth with your mouth blocking their nose with your cheek 156
  • 152. 4. Stop heavy bleeding • Always give first aid care Heavy bleeding of any type can In an emergency, when gloves in ways which protect you be fatal. Heavy external bleeding and the casualty from are not available and you have disease transmission. requires quick action as follows: to control bleeding: • Use protective barriers To stop external bleeding: • ask the casualty to help by (for example disposable applying pressure or by gloves or face mask) • locate where the blood is placing a dressing or other which are appropriate to coming from the emergency. clean dry cloth between your • When gloves are not • apply firm pressure where the hands and the wound available and you have to blood is coming from, using control bleeding, ask the whatever clean cloth is casualty to help you by available, eg. an item of applying pressure, or clothing, to make a pad placing a dressing or other clean dry cloth • if possible tie the pad firmly in beween your hand and place the wound. • if possible, raise the injured • Wash your hands area. This may reduce or help thoroughly as soon as to stop the bleeding. possible after giving first aid. • Avoid touching or being splashed by body fluids where possible. 157
  • 153. TEST YOURSELF Q1 In good conditions, a safe Q3 Driving can best be following distance is: described as: QUESTIONS A at least 1 second behind A an easy task that just The questions you will find the car in front about everyone can do in this section are examples B at least two seconds B a task which most of the type of questions behind the car in front people can learn after a few lessons over several weeks you will be asked. C at least two car lengths from the car in front C a complicated task The actual test questions Q2 If the police stop you at a Q4 Supervised learner drivers: are not the ones asked in random breath test station, this handbook. A are more at risk of being you must take a breath test: involved in a crash (The answers to Test Yourself A when you are asked to causing injury than Questions are upside down at the do so probationary drivers bottom of the next page). B only if you have B have the same risk of been drinking being involved in a crash causing injury as do C only if you have probationary drivers been speeding C are amongst the safest drivers on the roads 158
  • 154. Q5 Are your responsibilities B looking quickly over your Q8 The likelihood of a crash shoulder to look out the the same for a school is almost halved after: side windows crossing as for a A 6-8 months of solo pedestrian crossing? C a place behind the driver driving experience that can’t be seen by using A Yes, in both cases you B 1 year of solo the mirrors may drive on after giving driving experience way to pedestrians Q7 To make the most of your C 2-3 years of solo B No, at a children’s learning when you have driving experience crossing you must stop received your learners Q9 What is the best way to and remain stopped until permit, it is best to take: check the crashworthiness the crossing is completely A frequent drives with your of a new or used car? clear of pedestrians supervising driver A check cars safety rating at C No, at a children’s B the occasional long crossing you have to give drive with your or in the Australian New way only to children supervising driver Car Assessment Program Q6 A headcheck is: or the Used Car Safety C regular drives with you Rating brochures. supervising driver, at A making eye contact with times when the traffic is B ask your parents or other road users so that light and it is not raining a friend you know they have seen you C ask the person you’re buying the car from 159 Answers: Q1 B, Q2 A, Q3 C, Q4 C, Q5 B, Q6 B, Q7 A, Q8 A. Q9 A
  • 155. Resources to help you VicRoads VicRoads Bookshop VicRoads website The Bookshop distributes VicRoads website provides Telephone enquiries information about obtaining and information about VicRoads All registration and driver licence renewing a driver licence, services, products and strategies. enquiries and test bookings. registering a vehicle or renewing vehicle registration, as well as Monday to Friday information on road and vehicle 8.30am – 5.00pm safety and drink driving. It also VicRoads Traffic Control and Saturday 8.30am – 2.00pm sells road safety education kits Communication Centre and books for students and Tel: 13 11 71 Victorian calls prospective drivers. This Centre provides information Tel: +61 3 9854 2666 and assistance with: Ground Floor Overseas calls 60 Denmark Street • emergency road conditions Tel: 1300 652 321 If you have Kew Vic 3101 • freeway breakdowns impaired hearing or speech, and Tel: (03) 9854 2049 use a Telephone Typewriter (TTY) • traffic accident reports and (03) 9854 2782 Legislation • traffic light faults. Fax: (03) 9854 2468 Tel: 13 11 70 The Road Safety Act and Email: associated Regulations can be viewed at The Road Rules - Victoria can be viewed on VicRoads website. 161
  • 156. VicRoads Road Safety, VicRoads Vehicle maxi Traffic and Road Securities Register maxi provides a fast electronic way Management Services If you are thinking about buying to pay bills, access services, and For information and a second hand vehicle privately, get information 24 hours a day. assistance with: you should contact the Vehicle Securities Register to check • unsafe locations or whether: stretches of road • there is money owing on the • road safety vehicle, and • current road rules. • the vehicle is recorded Monday to Friday as stolen. 8.30am – 5.00pm For a small fee, you can also Tel: 13 11 70 obtain a Vehicle Securities Register certificate which provides legal protection against repossession. Tel: 13 11 71 162
  • 157. Victoria Police Information Victoria Citylink Bookshop For information and assistance Citylink is Melbourne’s fully with road law issues. electronic toll way. To use Retail sales of Government Citylink, you’ll need an e-TAG, legislation, reports, maps and Tel: 03 9247 5779 Day Pass or Tulla Pass. Call specialist publications. Citylink to arrange your e-TAG or 356 Collins Street Day Pass, or visit the website at Melbourne Vic 3000 Tel: 1300 366 356 Tel: 13 26 29 163
  • 158. Index A built-up areas 76, 132 dividing lines 86-88 G driver eligibility 23 buses 125, 132 Give Way rules 95-106, accompanying driver 12, 23 123-124, 126, 129, 132, Drive Test 16-17 C 135 air and noise pollution 151 driving caravans 13, 23 Give Way signs 81, 92, hours of 40-43, airbags 75 95-97, 135-137 instructor 17, 35, 39, child restraints 74-75 log 12, 41, alcohol and drugs 54, 56, Graduated Licensing children 96, 123-127, 145, 68-74 drugs 53-54, 72-74 156 System 22-24 see also alcohol and see also child restraints animals 78, 98, 103, 112, drugs; medicines H 135 Citylink 115-116, 163 dual control 17 hazard lights 115, 121, 138 assessment 23 clearways 142-143 E hazard perception 37 automatic transmission 18, conditions 23-24 emergency signals 121 see also potential hazard 20, 23 continuous period (learner emergency vehicles 132, Hazard Perception Test permit) 13-14, 148 B 152 8, 15-16, 21, 23, 24 country roads 77-78, 135 BAC (Blood Alcohol eyesight tests 10, 15, 23 headchecks 30, 38, 105 Concentration) 13, 23, 54, crashes 28, 36, 40, 55-63, 68-71 F headlight range 63 69-70 responsibilities 151 fairways 131 blind spots 38, 128, 133, headlights 120, 122 risk reduction 59-63 135 high-beam 120 fatigue 55-56 cyclists 103, 108, bookings heavy vehicles 133-135 fines 138, 144, 146 110, 112, 127-128 learner permit 8-9 licence 13-14 First Aid 152-157 Help phones 152 D following distance 61-62 brakes and braking high powered vehicles demerit points 146-147 44-45, 119 20, 23-24 freeways 77, 114-116, 144 disabled persons 10, 141, breakdowns 121 horn 45, 121, 126, 135 150 full licence 21, 23 breath testing 70-71 divided roads 103 horses see animals 164
  • 159. learner permit 5, 8-13, I mirrors 30, 38-39, 45, 62, police 71, 132 23-24, 146-148 133-134 potential hazard 16 identity (evidence of) legal responsibilities 149- mobile phones 23-24, 54 10-11, 149-150 power nap 56 157 motorcyclists 13, 127- 128 imprisonment (jail) 146-147 probationary licence level crossings 13-21, 23-24, 148-149, indicators N railway 84, 136-137, 30, 106, 119-122 145 R name change 11, 149-150 tram 136 interpreters 21 night driving 27, 63, 120 railway level crossings licence 9-14, 17, 21-24, intersections 81-83, see level crossings 146-147 93-99, 145 O restraint fitting stations 75 licence (steps) 7 interstate licence 5 overtaking 87-88, 118, reversing 47 lights 121-123, 129, 134-135 infringements court 147 brake 119 road markings 86-92 P flashing 134 K hazard 115, 121, 138 road rage 117 P plates 17, 23-24 head 120 keeping to the left 118 road work signs 85 high beam 120 parking 138-145 rear fog 121 L disabled 141 roundabouts 102-103, tail 120 meter 140-141 112-113, 118, L plates 12, 15, 23-24 traffic see traffic lights signs 140-144 rules and regulations lanes 88-90 M passenger restriction 18, 65-157 bicycle 89-90 23, 148 bus 89, 116, 132, 143 median strip 103 S changing 30, 89, 105,118 pedestrians 37, 96-97, 110-111 medical illness/disability overhead 89 crossings 85, 123-126,145 safety margin 60-62, 134 10, 14, 150 tram 89-90, 129-131 signals 95, 124 transit 89-90 safety zones 125-126 medicines 54, 56, 72-74 penalties 20, 146-149 language options 8, 21 scanning 39, 45-47, 55 merging 105, 114, photographs 12, 17, 21 see also zip merging school speed zones 77 165
  • 160. speed limits 76 seat belts 57, 74-76 V tram lights 94 stopping 138, 144-145 shared zones 77, 97 tram stops 125-126 vehicles (definition) 98 distance 78 Sheriff’s Office 146, 147 trams 97, 102, 125-126, vision impaired 127 supervising drivers 14, 17, 129-131 signalling see indicators 33, 35, 39-40, 63 W transit lanes 90 signs 80-86, 140-144 weather conditions 27, 37, T advisory 84 trucks 23-24, 108, 133-135, 42-43, 63, 79 clearway 142-143 142 tail lights 120 direction 86 Z TTY (Telephone give way 81, 92, 95, 97, taxis 70, 143 Typewriter) 8, 161 137 zero BAC see BAC test intersections 81-83 Tunnel 115-116 learner permit 8-12 zip merging 105 railway level crossings licence 13-17 84, 136-137 turns and turning 104, roadworks 85 106-113, 118 test yourself questions roundabouts 102 hook 108-109 158-159 speed 76-77, 84 left 107-108, 118 stop 81, 83, 92, 95, 97 Three point turn 112 right 107, 118 tow away 143-144 roundabout 112, 113, 118 T-intersections 83, 100-101 truck 134-135 U-turn 97, 104, 110- warning 82-85 112, 118 tiredness see fatigue zones 142-145 tyres 45, 57 tollways 115 skidding 45, 79 U traffic islands 91, 92, 145 slip lanes 96-97, 99, 107 U-turns traffic lane arrows 91 special purpose lanes 89-90 97, 104, 110-111, 118 traffic lights 93-95, 124 speed 55 trailers 13, 23-24 speed control 46-47, 59-60, 62-63, 114 tram level crossings see level crossings 166
  • 161. VicRoads Customer Service Centres PORTLAND METROPOLITAN DROMANA COUNTRY ECHUCA 114a Percy Street CUSTOMER Shop 11 CUSTOMER 5 Mundarra Road SERVICE Dromana Central SERVICE Echuca 3564 Portland 3305 CENTRES 143 Point Nepean Rd CENTRES GEELONG SALE Dromana 3936 Fyans Street 28 Princes Highway BROADMEADOWS ARARAT FRANKSTON Geelong South 3220 Sale 3850 Cnr Pearcedale Shop 2 71 Hartnett Drive Parade and 56 High Street HAMILTON SEYMOUR Seaford 3198 Johnstone Street Ararat 3377 Riley Street 5 Crawford Street Broadmeadows 3047 Seymour 3660 HOPPERS CROSSING Hamilton 3300 BAIRNSDALE 52–64 Old Geelong Rd BUNDOORA 535 Princes Highway HORSHAM SHEPPARTON (Spotlight Centre) 8 Graduate Road Bairnsdale 3875 14 O’Callaghans Pde 231-239 Corio Street Hoppers Crossing University Hill Horsham 3400 Shepparton 3630 BALLARAT 3029 Bundoora 3083 88 Learmonth Road KYNETON SWAN HILL MELTON BURWOOD EAST Wendouree 3355 ALL TELEPHONE 2 Beauchamp Street 70 Nyah Road 267 High Street 12 Lakeside Drive Kyneton 3444 Swan Hill 3585 ENQUIRIES BENALLA Melton 3337 Burwood East 3151 50-52 Clarke Street 13 1171 LEONGATHA WANGARATTA OAKLEIGH SOUTH CAMBERWELL Benalla 3672 Anderson Street 62-68 Ovens Street 8.30am to 5.00pm 1 Eskay Road 3 Prospect Hill Road Leongatha 3953 Wangaratta 3677 BENDIGO South Oakleigh 3167 Camberwell 3124 Monday to Friday 57 Lansell Street MARYBOROUGH WARRAGUL SUNBURY CARLTON Bendigo 3550 8.30am to 2.00pm Shire Offices Unit 5 7/36 Macedon Street 459 Lygon Street Saturday Neill Street 131 North Road COBRAM Sunbury 3429 Carlton 3053 Maryborough 3465 Warragul 3820 Shire Offices Customer Service SUNSHINE DANDENONG 44 Station Street MILDURA WARRNAMBOOL Centre Trading 499 Ballarat Road 72-74 Greens Road Cobram 3644 109–111 Orange Ave 29 Jamieson Street Sunshine 3020 Hours Dandenong South Mildura 3500 Warrnambool 3280 COLAC 3175 8.30am to 4.30pm Princes Hwy MORWELL WODONGA Colac West 3250 Monday to Thursday Princes Drive 82-86 Elgin Boulevard Morwell 3840 Wodonga 3690 8.30am to 5.00pm Friday
  • 162. VRPIN00568.05.08 VicRoads Publication Number 00568/12