New motorcycle training laws in Queensland enforcing minimum hours could mean the end of one-on-one training, longer queues for courses and higher costs.
Grant Jordan of Biker Basics Rider Training says that under the new QRide guidelines, one-on-one training may cease to exist because it will become too expensive to provide.
He says he agrees with the new curriculum which seems to follow the NSW and Victorian systems.
However, he says Main Roads has told him they may enforce tuition for learners in two lots of six hours, three lots of four hours, or six two-hour sessions.
“There has been no formal mention of reducing the course timelines to suit one-on-one education, even though the UNSW report into the changes and its findings appear to have been made using a 1 to 5/6 student ratio,” he says.
“There’s no recognition of prior learning that we do with young riders at the moment.
“It’s not an option which is a shame because there are lot of dirt bike riders and returned riders that have a skill set that shouldn’t be ignored.
“With them it’s more a case of fine tuning their skills than starting them from scratch. For some riders it’s only a matter of adding an extra few hours rather than an extra two days teaching them to suck eggs.”
The extra time would either mean instructors would have to increase their course costs or reduce their hourly rate.
Grant, aged 33, became a registered QRide and NSW instructor in 2015 after riding since the age of four, completing several advanced training courses and even doing some amateur racing which included winning the 2014 Australian FX250 production series.
Grant also believes this increased demand for training ground and class room time will also add major costs to his small business.
“The only way to continue will be to run larger classes with more students to spread the costs, undoing my original goals of providing cost-effective personalised training to my local area,” he says.
He says the system would favour the bigger providers and rob riders of individual and personalised tuition.
“I provide tailored, one-on-one tuition, but I can’t talk to them for 12 hours unless they are having trouble and by then I’m more likely to be pushing them toward riding a push bike, anyway” Grant says.
“I’ve actually done that to some customers aged 55-plus. They are often the ones that take a long time to teach the basics, not like your average 19-year-old kid.”
Grant also fears that with limited suitable training grounds available, the minimum course times could lead to increased waiting times for a course.