Driving is a privilege, not a right

Why is it so many motorists seem to lose perspective and understanding of the road rules when there is a learner driver in the vicinity?

Perhaps these newcomers are the road users everyone should be following as a good example. They may not be the most experienced, but their knowledge of the rules is fresh and current.

After all, they have just done the necessary study to ensure they know the rules – including those that may have recently changed. They have also been tested to ensure their knowledge is up to the highest standard.

Meanwhile their ongoing learner training, in many cases, is driven home through lessons with qualified driving instructors as well as training through programs such as the log book run and the red car driving training course.

And they are well versed in what is required of them to ensure a pass when the time comes to sit for their driving test.

In fact, many of the requirements that could determine a pass or fail for new drivers – head checks, the use of indicators, behaviour at traffic lights and roundabouts –are often ignored by those who are long-time road users. 

It is clear the newest drivers in society are exposed to a great variety of skill and confidence training.

They are also put through a tough testing process to ensure they are fit for independence on the road. 

But for some reason those black and yellow signs with the letter ‘L’ on them are seen by some motorists as a sign to put the pressure on the newcomers to the road. 

Tailgating or speeding past a learner when there is a need to merge are situations all too often experienced by learner drivers.

This behaviour often occurs when the learner driver is already travelling at the legal speed limit or when they have clearly indicated that they need to merge.

Such behaviour of supposedly more skilled drivers with more experience is intimidating and illegal. 

Have they forgotten they were once learner drivers?

Fortunately most road users are considerate, but for those who think they are above the law and have great thrill in putting pressure on others, here’s hoping you learn some consideration for others before it’s too late. 

The opportunity to drive is not a right, it is a privilege that should be respected by all.