Having just passed your BTT, FTT, RTTs and the practical test, we salute you. However, the fact remains there is no better teacher than experience, and new drivers are more prone to accidents.
Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death for 13-19 year olds with 76% of crashes in the USA attributed to teen driving error.
Note: It’s not incompetency, but sheer inexperience that leads to these crashes. A new driver simply has yet to develop the crucial skills needed for the road. Car insurance experts note that it also doesn’t help either that the number of cars on our roads is increasing.
Top errors made by new drivers
Car insurance companies usually provide better incentives to drivers who have driven for more years. Although no amount of studying can make up for years of real driving experience, it still helps to take note of the errors that so many new drivers make. Simply being aware of the possible mistakes you can make helps you drive more carefully.
The lack of “scanning” skills.
Research shows that the lack of scanning ability is the leading cause for all new drivers’ crashes. Scanning refers to the amount of environment you read when driving, and it is especially important when negotiating turns. New drivers should make the effort to actively look far ahead, to the right and left of the car in order to increase his or her awareness of the environment.
Driving too fast for road conditions
This is not necessarily confined to speed limits. In difficult weather and traffic conditions, it would be a good idea to drive more slowly, particularly when visibility is reduced significantly.
Getting easily distracted by something inside or outside the car.
Generation Y is said to be addicted to their mobile phones- even in the car. Replying to that text can wait till you have pulled over, and the same goes for changing the song on your iPod via that tiny click wheel. Even navigating your GPA can prove to be distracting, perhaps overly so for a new driver who could use all his or her attention on the wheel.
Other common errors include running red lights, driving after medicine (which has proven to affect one’s driving in a way similar to that of alcohol), and not wearing a seat belt. This is no trivial matter: drivers without seatbelts are twenty five times more likely to die in a crash.
Here is a list of the penalties you could be facing if you drive carelessly:
- Exceeding 1 – 20km/h = $130 + 4 demerit points.
- Exceeding 21 – 30km/h = $150 + 6 demerit points.
- Exceeding 31 – 40km/h = $180 + 8 demerit points.
- Exceeding 41 – 50km/h = >$200 + 12 demerit points + Court.
- Exceeding 51 – 60km/h = >$200 + 18 demerit points + Court.
- Exceeding >61km/h = >$200 + 24 demerit points + Court.
- Careless driving = $150 + 6 demerit Points. Inconsiderate driving = $170 + 9 demerit points + court.
- Dangerous driving = >$200 + 24 demerit points + court + vehicle compounded.
- Illegal racing = >$200 + vehicle confiscate + court.
- Failure to put on a seat belt = $120 + 3 demerit points.
- Crossing double white lines = $130 + 4 points.
- Drive/riding at bus lane during operating hours = $130 + 4 points.
- Using your phone while driving = $200 + 12 demerit point + phone confiscate.
- Drink driving = up to $5000 fine and, or jail term + licence suspended + court. For first offence. 2nd time offence = jail term + fine + court.