The ACT Government is backing the call of Senior Australian of the Year Val Dempsey to skill Canberrans on first aid as they learn to drive.
St John Ambulance Australia has launched a new free e-learning course which the ACT Government will encourage learner drivers to complete under the ACT’s Graduated Licensing Scheme.
Minister for Transport Chris Steel said the ACT Government will offer a five-hour discount to learner drivers who complete the course from their 100-hour requirement of supervised driving.
“We’re supporting 2022 National and ACT Senior Australian of the Year Val Dempsey in her work to educate learner drivers by incentivising the take up of this new first aid training,” Minister Steel said.
“This free 30-minute online first aid course will provide new drivers with basic first aid skills to respond to road injuries if they’re the first on scene at a road traffic collision.
“This training won’t just provide the skills that could save a life, it is a reminder to the next generation of drivers of the serious consequences that crashes have on our roads.”
The ACT Government will be providing funding to Queensland University of Technology to undertake a formal evaluation of the course, under the ACT Road Safety Fund. The evaluation will also explore potential for the first aid course’s expansion across Australia and whether the training should be mandatory to complete for all learner drivers.
“This First Aid for Learner Driver program wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for Val’s tireless efforts and commitment,” Minister Steel said.
“Over many years, Val has advocated to save more lives through first aid – and today marks another step towards her goal.”
Further information about the reduction in mandatory supervised learner driving hours will be made available in the coming months.
Quote attributable to Senior Australian of the Year and ACT Senior Australian of the Year Val Dempsey:
“I couldn’t think of a stronger incentive for learner drivers to equip themselves with these basic, lifesaving skills. I’m so grateful that Minister Steel and the ACT Government has taken this important step and hope that other states and territories follow.”
Quote attributable to St John Ambulance Australia CEO Brendan Maher:
“It’s so good to see the ACT Government taking this action on road safety – to equip an entire generation of Australians with basic lifesaving first aid skills.”
– Statement ends –
Chris Steel, MLA | Media Releases
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