- Monday 8 January, 2007

Focus on P-plate passenger numbers

Focus on P-plate passenger numbers: PCA

Mon 8 Jan, 2007
The NSW government is being urged not to be distracted from the issues of passenger and night-time driving restrictions for P-plate drivers.

The NRMA has proposed a zero-tolerance policy to be adopted for P-plate drivers whereby the demerits scheme would be abolished for novice drivers.

This means their licences would be suspended for any traffic offence.

The Pedestrian Council of Australia (PCA) and the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) road trauma advisory Committee said the proposal had merit, but both groups said it should not overshadow more important issues of night-time and passenger restrictions on Tuesday, when a panel investigating ways to reduce the number of road accidents meets.

"The evidence supporting passenger and night-time restrictions is overwhelming and unequivocal," RACS spokesman Dr Danny Cass said.

"These interventions are pro-active, not reactive, a car full of teenagers, late at night, being driven by a young inexperienced driver is simply a recipe for a potential disaster."

PCA chairman Harold Scruby said his organisation has been calling for these restrictions for more than three years and they now had the support of the Motor Accidents Authority.

"All the government has done is call more meetings," Mr Scruby said. "In the meantime scores of young lives have been lost."

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