Probation plan for new drivers
GRADUATION PERIOD FOR NEW DRIVERS: The drivers license process could be in three phases (learner, probation, driving licence) if a new draft of regulations are implemented.
Cape Town - Calls for safer roads and fewer road deaths have picked up in 2012, so now the ANC wants to implement a raft of changes for drivers and their vehicles.
Among them are tougher regulation of driving schools and instructors, roadworthy test for vehicles older than 10 years every two years and a probation system for new drivers.
New drivers will have to complete a year of probationary driving before they receive a full driving licence. If they commit certain offences during the probation period they will have to start the licence process all over again.
Passing a driving test will earn a 12-month provisional licence but it won't be valid between midnight and 4am. Six road traffic offences in the year and the licence will be suspended for two years.
New drivers will also have to log every 60 hours of driving and their vehicles will have to display a red “P” denoting their probation status.
Lawmakers are also calling for driving schools to have their instructors and vehicles registered. The location of the driving school and instructor will also need to be provided.
Western Cape MEC for transport and public works, Robin Carlisle, has given his support for the changes - which also include providing proof of address for traffic-related transactions such as paying fines.
Carlisle wants vehicle owners registered on the transport department's eNaTiS system as they often escape prosecution by providing false details.
PAIN FOR DRIVERS TO SAVE LIVES
Carlise and the Automobile Association have welcomed the changes but the public has only until 6 July 2012 to comment on the proposed regulations. You can, for a start, make your view known in the Readers' Comment section below - or write a thoughtful longer article and we'll publish it.
Wheels24 supports the probation period although there could be a spike in fraudulent licences. Notching up six offences will keep new drivers on their toes though driving between midnight and 4am seems pointless as those are the quietest times on our roads. We suppose this is to reduce the number of drunk drivers driving home from clubs or bars.
As always, SA's transport department has good ideas but the implementation has always been tenuous at best.
Roadworthy tests for vehicles older than 10 years? We guess the ANC hasn't the mettle to go up against the taxi industry here - all vehicles should be roadworthied every year after only two years and servicing record books should be in all vehicles at all times.
What do you think about the new changes? Share your opinions in our comments section below? Or better yet email us and we'll publish your thoughts!