Why the resistance to driver training?

Driver training car motorcycles awareness

Despite motorcycle riders calling for more driver training and awareness of riders, authorities continue to resist for a variety of reasons.

Riders believe better trained drivers would be more aware of them and rules such as lane filtering, making their ride safer.

However, politicians and authorities usually reject driver training as being expensive, promoting hooning and unfair for people in remote areas who would have difficulty accessing further training.

Longtime rider advocate John Nelson points out other erroneous arguments in the article “The effectiveness of driver training as a road safety measure” by former VicRoads officer Ron Christie which appeared in the RACV magazine Royal Auto.

Basically it says that there is no empirical evidence that advanced training reduces crashes or makes drivers better or changes their behaviour. You can read the full report here.

Since there is no research into how motorcycle awareness and education about lane filtering affects drivers, there is also no evidence that shows it doesn’t affect behaviour and skills.

John says motorcycle awareness should be trialled it to see if it does have benefits.

Driver training agendaMotorcycle car blind spot safety crash driver training

“I am sure (Ron) was paid a handsome sum for this article to support the VicRoads agenda and silence and oppose advocacy of driver education,” he says.

“He had his finger in the pie with the statement that Vicroads will not do anything that could be construed as encouraging motorcycles.  He hates bikes and change.  

“There is a big difference between driver training and driver education.  We are all taught the three Rs in schools.  Why not driver education?  

“Attitudes, discipline, behaviour and knowledge are not taught to those who want to drive.  All they are taught is to pass the license test.”

John points out that teachers are required to have a university degree before teaching kids, but parents and driver instructors aren’t.

“The government seems hell bent on enforcement and revenue over education,” he says.  

“If a lot more road users behaved and complied with speed limits and other popular traffic offences there would be a short fall in the Victorian Budget.  

“Victoria has factored in $400 million into the ‘19-‘20 budget.  If there is a major drop in traffic related revenue the government would look at other means of raising that short fall.  It is a vicious circle.”

5 Comments

  1. All drivers should be required to resit their “computer tests” every 5 years (and pay a fee to do so) in order to have their licenses renewed.
    Included in such testing could be a component that tests for motorcycle awareness.
    By doing this a lot of incapable, unaware, ignorant drivers (including older and international drivers) could be potentially removed from our roads, reducing the potential for accidents. The alternative for drivers/riders is to become aware of current road rules and understand them! This also will have a potentially positive impact on our Courts as a driver can’t plead ignorance!!
    Without their being some sort of revenue base, i don’t believe Govt will do anything at all!

  2. Murder charges against the idiots who claim there’s no need for education and speed cameras save lives and other fallacies that keep the revenue rolling in. That would make them change their attitudes.
    The biggest problem with any money grubbing official is the disconnect between the revenue something reaps and the cost of the reaping.
    We all know that traffic accidents cost much more than the repair cost of the vehicles.
    We also know that speed enforcement doesn’t save lives or prevent accidents it might if appropriately used in some locations where there is no better alternative but there is almost always a better alternative but it doesn’t raise revenue.
    We need to ask what does the current doctrine cost? Does the raising of $400,000,000 in revenue cost the state over a billion in hospital costs lost wages damage to infrastructure wages of first responders etc etc… ?

    Advanced driver training doesn’t reduce accidents etc? Who said anything about advanced driver training? Just teach them how to drive properly and pay attention and the consequences of their actions ! Advanced driver training and proper driver education are two almost entirely different things. I have done an advanced driver training course and it had nothing in it about road rules , there was some stuff that is useful for everyday driving but I already had all of it from riding.

  3. Driver education has been in schools in the U.S. for decades yet we still prefer to use the hit and miss of parental driver training. I fear that governments have become to dependent on income from fines and don’t really care about the resulting slaughter on our roads.

  4. How do we advocate change here? This is an issue that has been argued about for decades with zero progress. I believe in this and I “talk” about it frequently but don’t actually do anything meaningful (apart from get myself regularly trained). I honestly have no idea how the genuinely interested can get involved in this topic on a state or national level.

  5. Driver and rider training is greatly needed across the board drivers need educating on how to drive and share the road with “Bikes , Trucks and other cars” and not just the car drivers truck drivers and bike riders need a lot more educating . Only through proper driver training by highly trained professionals will the road tolls start to reduce. The days of mum and dad teaching children to drive correctly are severely out dated and only perpetuate bad driving habits and add to the road toll we need to see the way some other European countries with low road tolls train young drivers teaching them to control a car through an accident scenario is the only way to do this correctly

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