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A $16 million commitment over four years for the Keys2Drive
program was a welcome surprise in the Federal Budget and
will go a long way to ensuring our kids are driving safely.
The Government had funded the Keys2Drive learner driver
training program since 2008 at a rate of around $4 million
per year. That funding was due to cease this year. The
additional cash injection shows the Government’s
commitment to road safety education and giving young
drivers the skills to remain safe on our roads.
After a record low national road toll in 2014, we saw
unwanted spikes in 2015 and 2016 and, clearly, that’s
something we need to address as a community.
The Keys2Drive initiative provides over 20,000 learner
drivers with a subsidised one-hour lesson with a professional
instructor, while their parent or regular supervising driver
sits in the back to gain real skills, so they can safely help the
learner with their remaining hours.
Analysis of the Keys2Drive program, commissioned by the
Australian Automobile Association, showed participants in
NSW were 40 per cent less likely to be involved in a crash that
caused moderate to serious injury. They were also 28 per
cent less likely to be involved in a road crash of any type in
their first six months on P-plates.
Many supervising drivers may not have had any
involvement with driver education for many years so this
program helps to refresh those skills for everyone involved.
NRMA research shows one-third of learner drivers attribute
bad habits behind the wheel to lessons from their parents.
This program helps stop those bad habits in their tracks,
providing the right education for learners and supervisors.
We know that young drivers are at particularly high risk of
road-crash related injury or loss of life, which is why funding
to continue this program is so vital.
FEDERAL BUDGET RENEWS COMMITMENT TO KEYS2DRIVE
CORAL TAYLOR Director
Sydney North and North-West (Howe Region)
The hidden costs of serious crashes
Funding for road
upgrades is an
investment in our
THE LATEST edition of the
NRMA’s Cost of Crashes report
makes sobering reading for road
users across NSW.
Between 2011 and 2015, car-
related fatalities and casualties
cost the NSW economy $35.7
billion. That is an extraordinary
figure, especially when you
consider that it represents an
eight per cent drop compared to
the previous report in 2012 and
was driven by a 20 per cent
decrease in the number of lives
lost on the state’s roads.
But the worst news is that over
the same period, serious injuries
increased 4.6 per cent to 61,130, at
a total cost to the community of
almost $18 billion.
The human toll is obviously of
greater concern than the financial
impact, but both factors are
critical for our future wellbeing.
While the number of lives lost
across all areas of NSW fell, the
Cost of Crashes report found that
in key geographical areas there
were increases in serious injuries.
Sydney’s west recorded a 23 per
cent increase that cost $2.25
billion, Sydney’s north saw a 14 per
cent increase that added up to
$852 million, and far western NSW
experienced a nine per cent
increase at a cost of $38 million.
To help reverse this trend, the
NRMA and its sister clubs across
the nation have called on the
Australian Government to fund a
number of important programs in
the Federal Budget.
Key demands include funding for
Sydney’s missing-link motorways,
including SouthConnex and the
Northern Beaches Transport
Corridor, increased funding for the
Blackspot program, and upgrades
to regional highways and public
transport services across NSW
and the ACT.
Pleasingly, the report found the
number of lives lost on the Princes,
Pacific, Newell, Hume and Sturt
highways from 2011-2015 had
decreased by one-third compared
But with the NSW road toll
increasing over consecutive years,
the need for more action and
investment is greater than ever.
KYLE LOADES Chairman
Serious injuries from
car crashes cost NSW
almost $18 billion.
19/6/17 3:43 pm
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