Giving Driving Lessons? Sunshine Coast Parents Should Note These Rule Changes
Ah, Christmas break, a time for relaxing, spending time with family and unwinding. Or maybe you are bracing yourself for the experience of giving an eager teenager driving lessons. Sunshine Coast parents will know that this can be the absolute opposite of relaxation and unwinding! But it’s an important step in preparing your child for life on the road.
If you are on your full C license (which you legally should be when teaching an L plater), then it's been a while since you got down to the fine print with the road rules. You might be surprised to learn that some rules have changed. For instance, remember all those hours you spent in frustration learning how to reverse park? Kids these days don't need to acquire that skill, so relax a little knowing you don't have to teach that!
While you are let off the hook with that one, there have been quite a few changes recently that we want you to know so you can lend your child your precious Toyota, knowing they are taught the correct rules. If you are allowing others to give them driving lessons, remember that person must have held their full licence for a minimum of a year.
Most importantly, you’ll want to know that your most precious cargo (your very own excited L Plater) is in the loop with all the rules to keep them safe. Here is a breakdown of the most significant and costly repercussions for not knowing the changes that can cause risk or expose you and your L-Plater to an expensive mistake. So, before you get started with driving lessons, Sunshine Coast parents should read on!
L platers, L plater supervisors and mobile phone use in Queensland
L Platers in Queensland are not, under any circumstances, to use a mobile phone when controlling a vehicle. This also includes when stationary but still in control of the vehicle. For example, at stop signs, train stops and going through a road-related area like a fast-food drive-through. Although you are allowed to touch a phone to pay for food or retrieve a card from a phone wallet, it must not be used for any other purpose. So, no scrolling social media, even if it's a long wait. To help make it clear, even touching the mobile phone when in control of a vehicle as a Learner driver can result in a hefty fine.
Remind your Learner of the $1000 fine (now the highest fine in the country) and four demerit points. In addition, supervisors cannot use a mobile phone on speaker, which will also cause you a $1000 fine. Finally, mobile phones are distracting to new drivers. To keep it safe and distraction-free, placing the phone in the back seat, in your bag, or out of sight will help you remember this rule.
Slow down past emergency vehicles
While many of us slow down when passing emergency vehicles as a general consideration, did you know this is a road rule? Slow to a safe speed when passing any emergency vehicles – this includes police, fire and ambulance. You must also move to the side and out of the way to allow them safe travel if there are lights and sirens.
Turn left on red is no longer a road rule in Queensland
You may remember being able to turn on red at certain traffic lights, allowing you to come to a stop and then turn left, providing you gave way to all other traffic. However, due to the risk to pedestrians and the fact that it was only found to save drivers around nine seconds, as of June 30, 2021, this rule is no longer in use.
Learning to drive is an exciting time for a young person, and though there are challenges when giving driving lessons, Sunshine Coast parents can ensure the safety and road readiness of their child by building up those important hours on the road together. Keep your Learner and Toyota safe on the roads by brushing up on the road rules yourself and ensuring your Toyota is serviced regularly and safe to drive by following the warranty and Toyota recommendations.