A landmark program which has helped more than 1,200 young and aspiring Queensland motorists to get their driver’s licence has been awarded an international road safety award.
The PCYC Braking the Cycle learner driver mentor program was recognised overnight (11 December) in London with a prestigious International Road Safety Award presented by His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent.
Pictured above is Garry Humphries, PCYC Queensland Board Chair; His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent; and Phil Schultz, PCYC Queensland Chief Executive Officer.
The PCYC Braking the Cycle program has seen more than 68,000 supervised driving hours undertaken, with more than 2.2 million kilometres driven – the equivalent of travelling to the moon and back two and a half times.
The program involves volunteer mentor drivers taking young learner drivers under their wing and helping them reach the required 100 hours of training prior to sitting the Queensland learner driver practical tests.
At last night’s awards ceremony held at The Savoy in London, judges said Braking the Cycle “not only the improves safety record of this vulnerable group of people but also addresses the important area of social inclusion”.
PCYC Braking the Cycle is now being offered in 37 locations around Queensland and this number is expected to reach 44 by February 2019.
Mr Schultz said PCYC Braking the Cycle was developed by the Ipswich and Logan branches in 2011 in response to community concerns around unlicensed driving and unemployment within lower socio-economic areas.
“The program matches volunteer driver mentors up with young, local learner drivers who otherwise cannot access a supervisor or registered vehicle to complete their mandatory 100 pre-testing logbook hours,” said Mr Schultz.
“The 100-hour requirement can place stress on young people and act as a barrier to getting a licence and then having the opportunity to engage in employment.
“Secondary to this is the impact of poorly-educated or unlicensed drivers on the roads and the devastating impact this can have on the community.”
The Motor Accident Insurance Commission (MAIC) is a key financial supporter of PCYC Braking the Cycle. MAIC is the organisation responsible for regulating Queensland’s Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance scheme.
Insurance Commissioner Neil Singleton said research shows that young drivers are over-represented in road crashes that result in a claim being submitted to Queensland’s CTP insurance scheme.
“Funding of this type can improve driving outcomes and reduce road trauma, which benefits Queensland motorists and the broader community.
“An independent evaluation of PCYC Braking the Cycle in 2016 by the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety confirmed the program is closely aligned with best practice for learner driver mentor programs.
“There are few things more important when young people transition to adulthood than getting your driver’s licence,” said Mr Singleton.
“But for many young people, this is by no means an easy journey. PCYC Braking the Cycle is a first-class program designed to help young people along that journey.”
Learn more about PCYC Braking the Cycle.