Driver testing to be reviewed

LEARNER drivers may face some new challenges in their practical driving test, after the State Government announced it would be reviewing the testing regime for the first time in more that a decade.

Transport minister Annastacia Palaszczuk said the review would look at strengthening the current test, known as Q-SAFE, in an effort to help current and future drivers be safer on the roads.

It is understood learner drivers trying to secure a provisional licence would be tested on a wider range of driving skills, including thinking ahead and planning a trip.

“It’s timely we look at ways to improve our practical drive test given Q-SAFE was first introduced in 1998,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

Lern-Ezy driving instructor Rob Dickie said he welcomed the review, as long as the appropriate consultation was sought.

“I think it is a positive thing as long as it is done properly,” he said.

“I haven’t heard anything much about it yet, but I expect as long as they have thought about it and consulted people before bringing it in it should be a positive thing.”

Ms Palaszczuk said a panel of government and industry experts would analyse and make recommendations on the practical driving test, including development of best practice driving tests, suitable waiting periods after failed driving tests and qualifications for driver examiners.

Bargara Beach Driving School instructor Alex Avery said he had not heard of the review yet, nor what had been proposed, but said change was positive.

“I’m in favour of practical testing being a good indicator of being a safe driver, but I would like to see Queensland move towards the competency-based testing program where they go through a checklist of competencies as opposed to a point-in-time test,” Mr Avery said.

“I would support more of a course like Q-Ride, which says they are qualified after completing a course rather than a point-in-time test.

“If the review can find a fairer way to test their capabilities, I think our roads would be safer.”

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