A preliminary analysis of the effectiveness of the new QLD GDL program

Randall, Neil William (2011) A preliminary analysis of the effectiveness of the new QLD GDL program. [USQ Project]

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Globally traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for young people aged 15 to 19 years. More than 40% of all road traffic deaths occur among people aged 0 – 25 years, (WHO, 2007; WHO, 2006).

Australia is not immune to this epidemic. In 2007 nearly a quarter of all individuals killed in Australian road accidents where aged between 17 and 25 years, (Albanese A, 2008).

The current literature identifies many reasons for why young drivers are so overrepresented in accident statistics. These reasons are termed ‘risk factors’ with the majority of research identifying the following risk factors:
• Inexperience.
• Less developed visual perception and cognitive skills.
• Deliberate risk taking.
• Inability to identify risks or hazards.
• Overconfidence.
• Inattention / Distraction.
• Tendency to drive at high risk times.
• Alcohol or Drugs.
• Choice of vehicle.

Many programs have been implemented to address these risk factors, resulting in varying levels of success. However one particular strategy, aimed specifically at young novice drivers, has produced significant results internationally. This strategy is graduated drivers licensing.

Graduated Drivers Licence (GDL) programs differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction however they all adhere to a fundamental philosophy of providing a step wise approach to full licensing.

In their most basic form GDL programs generally involve a three stage licensing system consisting of an extended learner’s period, an intermediate licence stage and a full licence. GDL licence holders are required to not only adhere to all standard traffic and licensing regulations
but also have special restrictions and criteria that specifically apply to the stage of licensing the
novice driver has achieved.

In July 2007 the Queensland Government implemented a new GDL program aimed at reducing the overrepresentation of young drivers in road accident statistics for the State of Queensland.

The preliminary data available at the time of writing this paper indicates the new GDL program has had some success in reducing hospitalisation crashes for young novice drivers however there is little evidence to suggest the new GDL program has been solely responsible for any reduction in fatal crashes for young novice drivers.

Additionally the available data indicates the new GDL program has had little to no impact on addressing crashes attributed to alcohol and therefore it is recommended that further investigation be conducted in to the potential benefits of implementing harsher punitive measures and return to driving restrictions along with the possibility of raising the legal drinking age.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Appendix files have been loaded as Zip Files.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Agricultural, Civil and Environmental Engineering (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Supervisors: Kathirgamalingam, Soma
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2012 03:35
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2022 01:52
Uncontrolled Keywords: young drivers; traffic accidencts; death; accident statistics; Graduated Drivers Licence programs; GDL programs
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090507 Transport Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400512 Transport engineering
URI: https://sear.unisq.edu.au/id/eprint/20759

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