Learn How To Drive – Speed Management (The Safer Drivers Course NSW)
Speed is the major cause of death and injury in road crashes. Some novice drivers might be cautious and drive slowly. However, as they become more competent and confident, they might drive at speeds at which they cannot stop in time. An increase in speed reduces the time that a driver has to detect and respond to hazards. Hazard perception includes the process of discovering, recognising and reacting to potentially dangerous driving situations. Novice drivers detect and respond to hazards at a slower rate than do experienced drivers.
There are safety benefits to be achieved if novice drivers – and all drivers – apply low-risk driving strategies, such as:
- Making decisions about their speed based on the driving conditions and the posted speed limit.
- Driving at a speed that will allow them to react and completely stop within a safe distance.
- Always being prepared to stop for pedestrians.
- The speed restrictions for L and P-plate drivers allow novice drivers to develop low-risk driving skills and the ability to adjust vehicle speed to suit the traffic and road conditions.
The risk of crashing when holding and using a mobile phone increases fourfold, while the risk of a driver being killed is between four and nine times higher than when not using and holding a phone. It is illegal for Learner and P1 drivers and riders to use any function of a mobile phone when driving or riding. This includes phones in hands-free mode, in a fixed mounting, or with a loud speaker operating. It also includes any other function of a phone, such as GPS, audio, texting or emailing.
Learner and P1 drivers and riders are still developing their vehicle control and hazard perception skills and they need to concentrate on the task of driving, P2 and fully licensed drivers and riders may only use a mobile phone to make or receive a call or to use the audio playing function if: The mobile phone is secured in a fixed mounting. The mobile phone does not require the driver/rider to touch the phone in any way. All other functions – including texting, video messaging, browsing the internet, reading preview messages and emailing – are prohibited. These rules still apply when stopped at traffic lights. All drivers and riders can only legally hold and use a phone in a parked vehicle. Driving or riding while using a mobile phone is dangerous because it can distract drivers from the driving task and increase their risk of crashing. It can result in: Slower reaction times to a hazard on the road ahead. Failing to see hazards altogether. Poor steering. Drifting across lanes. Driving in an erratic or overly slow manner.
Keeping a safe following distance
The distance that it will take you to stop your car depends on the speed at which you are travelling. The faster you go, the longer the stopping distance. For example, you need almost twice the distance to stop from 90 km/h than you do to stop from 60 km/h. This is true even in the best possible driving conditions – on a sealed dry road. This means that you must increase the following distance between you and the vehicle ahead as you increase speed. If you don’t do this, you may crash into the back of the vehicle ahead if it has to stop quickly. This type of crash happens to many Provisional drivers in NSW each year, but there’s an easy way to avoid this. It’s called the 3-second gap.
Learn How To Drive :- SPEED KILLS
- The severity of a crash increases with speed. If you speed you might not be able to stop. With a reaction time of one second, it will take the average driver driving at 110km/h about 90m to come to a stop on a dry surface. If the driver encounters a hazard such as a pedestrian at a distance, of say, 60m ahead, the car will hit the pedestrian at an impact speed of 80km/h. At that speed there is a 100 percent chance that the pedestrian will be killed. If the driver were driving at 100km/h instead of 110, the collision speed would be 60km/h and the chances of the pedestrian being killed would be reduced to 70 percent.
- Had this driver been driving at 90km/h, the collision speed would have been 30km/h and the chance of death for the pedestrian would be educed further still, to approximately 7%. And the driver? The implications are just as dire for the occupants of the car. Their likelihood of death at a collision speed of 80km/h is 20 times higher than at an impact speed of 32 km/h. Put this into an urban context. If a child steps off a pavement 35 metres ahead of you, at the recommended speed of 50km/h you would stop with nine metres to spare. At the speed limit of 60km/h you would have only two metres to spare. At 70 km/h, the child would be dead. This is why SPEED KILLS, and why speed is one of the major focuses in the ARRIVE ALIVE campaign
- The effectiveness of safety devices such as air bags and safety belts is severely compromised at high speed. The poor quality of many vehicles on our roads and the problem of overloading of vehicles further increase the risk of crashes.
- Accident avoidance is more difficult at high speed because of the longer distance travelled during reaction time, the longer distance required to stop and the greater difficulty of controlling a vehicle at high speed.
- Increased accident risk as high speed places greater strain on tyres and brakes which increases the risk of failure.
- Human factors: High speeds reduce the visual field of the driver, restrict his/her peripheral vision and place greater demand on the task of driving.
More than half of drivers (58%) speed on 60kmh roads. Many drivers are not aware that if they hit a cyclist or pedestrian at 65 kmh rather than at 60kmh:
- The force of the impact increases by more than a third
- The pedestrian or cyclist is two and a half times more likely to die
- One school-aged child dies each day between 3 and 5pm as a result of road traffic collisions
Given these statistics, it is not surprising that as many as 69% of all road traffic collisions result in death or serious injury and 40% of all deaths on the road happen in built-up areas, many of which have speed limits of 30mph or less. All these facts are important when you Learn how to Drive
Learn How To Drive