Arrive and Drive
 

Auscarts has recently started to put together a Driver Education program targeted at students in years 7 to 9 in the years leading up to them being able to receive their Learners Permit.

Below is our proposal which outlines our program.

 

School and Youth groups at Auscarts

 

What we propose:

 

Where we differ, is our focus on student learning. This includes OH and S, preparing and equipping kids with the skills they need for the road (learners permit), bringing teachers and students closer by being out of the class room and also help bond student relationships. Basically, it’s learning in a fun environment.

 

The issues as Victoria Police and VicRoads see them:

 

Since 1989, Victoria’s road toll has had a large reduction. Unfortunately though, the 18 to 25 age group, continues to dominate the road toll statistics

 

Young Victorians in their first year of driving are almost four times more likely to be involved in a fatal or serious injury crash than more experienced drivers. The reasons for this include:

·         A lack of experience and road awareness

·         Limited ability and judgment

·         Underestimation of risks

·         Deliberate risk-taking behaviours

·         Alcohol and drug use.

 

The risks:

 

A young driver’s risk of being involved in a fatal crash is over five times higher when carrying two or more passengers than when travelling alone.

·         Young passengers are most likely to be killed in a car when travelling with young drivers.

·         For young male drivers, the riskiest combination is travelling with young male passengers.

·         Passengers are central to risky driving, especially where young men are involved.

·         Young male passengers often actively encourage their male peers to engage in risky driving behaviour.

·         Many young males say they drive in a risky way to show off to young male passengers, even if the passengers have not asked them to.

 

The reasons:

 

Common reasons given for unsafe driving by young drivers include:

·         Sense of invincibility

·         Impressing friends and wanting to be accepted

·         Peer group pressure

·         Going along with the crowd and not wanting to be left out

·         Don’t feel they can say no or speak up when they are in a risky situation.

 

 

How we can help

 

Inexperience of drivers is still the number one reason of serious crashes and fatalities on Victorian roads. Clearly something needs to be done to bring the driving standard of young Victorians to a higher level before they are allowed to drive solo.

 

Auscarts Indoor Racing has driving facilities from 13 years of age upwards.  If we can elongate the time in which young Victorians learn the dangers on our roads and build their skill base we have a chance to reduce this statistic. All we need to do is get the theory and practicality of driving started earlier.

 

All schools now are legally obliged to teach their students the dangers of sexual intercourse and equip them with the knowledge to make an informed decision about their actions. There is no such program for road safety. It is left solely up to the parents to teach their kids everything they need to know over two years. This is not possible for all families. Schools need to step in to help the parents out.

 

Although a go kart centre isn’t a substitute for driving on the road it can develop children’s skill base, from simple hand eye co-ordination through to being able to use the accelerator and brake. They also need to be alert to other drivers out on track and the traffic light safety system. It’s much better to learn this in a controlled environment then out on the road, when accidents can lead to serious injury.

 

We can teach them the basics or driving and also (if required) the reasoning and rules behind a venue such as ours with 35,000 members in our database. But more than that, we have the paperwork and reports to prove we are the safest venue in Victoria from liaising with engineers (Transport Accident Consultants) and WorkSafe Victoria.

We are working towards being the best go kart centre in Victoria. To do this we believe we need to bring the general public along for the ride and this initiative is one way to do so. By teaching kids how to drive, we can reduce the road toll and make Victorian roads the safest in Australia.

 

We are currently seeking expressions of interest from schools and youth groups who would like to take part in such a program. If this sounds like something your school or youth group would like to take part in, please let us know.

 

 

 

 
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