Canberra.bike recently expressed concern to the ACT Greens that with less than 90 days to the election they have had little to say about cycling. We know that vague promises get cycling nowhere. Caroline Le Couteur responded with the following text.
“Practically speaking, over the period that we have had balance of power (ie since 2008) the ACT government’s expenditure on cycling infrastructure has increased because our agreement with the ALP has forced them to do so. We have advocated for cyclists where ever possible. Shane (Minister for Road Safety Shane Rattenbury) in his role as road safety minister has done a lot to make cycling safer in Canberra – most recently anouncing training for learner drivers about cyclist and pedestrians. Here is the text of his media release.”Caroline Le Couteur MLA, email 5 August 2020
Canberra.bike hopes that there is a lot more discussion about cycling before the ACT Election in October 2020.
Below the press release on the Vulnerable Road User Program.
“New training courses to help learner drivers
3 August 2020
In an Australian-first, the ACT Government will now deliver new courses for learner drivers that are designed to keep young drivers, cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians safer on Canberra roads.
The Vulnerable Road User Program and Safer Driver Course are now available to help learner drivers become safer drivers, with education and practice specific to the ACT road rules.
The ACT is the first jurisdiction in Australia to have a course for learners specifically about vulnerable road users and the hazards they face.
Recent changes to the ACT’s driver licensing scheme mean that to obtain a provisional car licence, learner drivers must first complete a specified number of driving hours. This is 100 supervised driving hours for drivers under 25 and 50 supervised driving hours for drivers over 25.
The ACT Government has established two optional learner driver training courses to help learner drivers meet these requirements.The Vulnerable Road User Program is available for all learners and focuses on safely sharing the road with cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians. Successful completion of this course counts as 10 required driving hours.
The Safer Driver Course aims to reduce unsafe driving behaviours, with an in-class lesson and a practical driving component designed to take two learners per vehicle. Successful completion of the course will count as 20 required driving hours. The ACT Government is also offering a number of free places on this course each year to assist learners that may require financial assistance.
Comments attributable to Minister for Road Safety Shane Rattenbury:
“The ACT has a Vision Zero view to road safety – this means no deaths or injuries on our roads.”
“Provisional drivers are at highest risk of crashing in the first six months of independent driving. I encourage all learner drivers to take advantage of these courses to understand more about driving in the ACT, sharing the road, and keeping themselves and other road users safe.”
For course information, eligibility criteria and further information, visit www.act.gov.au/safeplates.
Statement endsMedia contact: Lisa Wills M 0481 035 764 Lisa.Wills@act.gov.au