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What Has Changed Under The New ACT Licensing Scheme In 2020

The Australian Capital Territory Licensing Scheme for learner and provisional drivers officially took effect on January 1, 2020, and contains multiple changes to enhance road safety,

So if you’re looking to learn how this affects you as a learner driver or as a provisional driver earning your full driver’s licence, you’re in the right place.

In this guide from Pass First Go, we’ll be taking a look at a few of the biggest changes that have taken place due to the ACT licensing scheme.

These Changes Do Not Affect Those With An L Or P Licence Before 1 January 2020

First and foremost, we must tell you that if you obtained your L or P licence in ACT before 1 January, 2020, none of these new rules will apply to you. Licence holders who obtained their licence before this time may continue to get your full driver’s licence under the previous ACT government licensing scheme.

These rules and regulations apply only to those who have learner licences or provisional licences issued after January 1, 2020. Now, let’s continue and discuss the changes that you will need to keep in mind if these rules apply to you.

Changes In Required Driving Hours For Learners

First, learners are now subject to new driving hour requirements, which were not present in the previous licensing scheme.

  • Drivers under the age of 25 must log at least 100 supervised driving hours, with 10 hours at night.
  • Drivers 25 and older must undertake a minimum of 50 supervised driving hours, with 5 hours at night.

Previously, there was no driving hours requirement. This new requirement is designed to ensure that learner drivers can gain experience and learn road safety techniques through hands-on practice, both during the day and night time.

Introduction Of A New Mandatory Hazard Perception Test

Online hazard perception testing is now mandatory in ACT to enhance road safety. Young drivers with their Ls must take a hazard perception test online after they have held their learner licence for a minimum of 3 months.

This test must be passed in order to get your provisional driver’s licence, along with the completion of the required logbook hours and a one-off driver’s assessment or CBT&A test administered by an accredited driving instructor.

Introduction Of A Two-Stage Provisional Graduated Licensing Scheme

There are now two stages of the provisional licence. After you obtain your Ps, you will get red P plates, and you will enter the P1 stage of the licencing scheme. During this time, you will only be able to drive with one passenger aged 16-22 from 11 PM to 5 AM, with exceptions for family members and work.

Once you have held your P1 licence for 12 months, you will receive your green P plates, and enter the P2 stage. At this point, the passenger restriction will be removed. Note that those aged 25 and older will automatically get a P2 licence for the entire 3-year provisional licence period, and will not be subject to P1 restrictions.

Ban On All Mobile Device Use For Learner And Provisional Drivers

The first stage of ACT licencing reform began on July 1, 2019, when a total mobile phone ban was issued for all learner and provisional drivers. You may not use mobile devices at any point when behind the wheel, even when your vehicle is stationary.

Reduced Demerit Point Threshold For Learner Drivers And Provisional Drivers

Previously, learner drivers and provisional drivers had a demerit point threshold of 12 points. This has now been reduced to only 4 points. In addition, there is now no way for provisional drivers to increase their demerit point threshold.

This means that even minor traffic violations can result in the suspension of your licence. Exceeding the speed limit by 30-45 km/h, for example, will result in 4 points and licence suspension.

Learner and provisional drivers must be very careful to follow all applicable road rules to avoid potential demerit points and licence suspension. If you exceed this threshold, your licence will be suspended for a minimum of 3 months. The suspension period may be longer, depending on the nature of your offence.

Need Help As A Learner Driver In ACT? Contact Pass First Go!

At Pass First Go, we make it easy for you to get your driver’s licence in ACT with quality instruction at a reasonable price. To learn more and make sure you’re prepared to take your drive test in ACT, fuse our online booking system to find a driving instructor and schedule your driving lessons in Canberra.

We offer driving instructors in ACT, as well as NSW and VIC – so don’t wait. Get the help you need from Pass First Go today, and become a more confident driver!

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