Teenage driver distraction will be tackled in an effort to curb road trauma with new funding to make distracted driving uncool.JENNA BISHOP March 28, 2014 5:08am
Stay focused on roads: Shepparton police First Constables Samara Dove and Michael Ibbott will be out to enforce laws involving distracted drivers.
National insurer AAMI has committed funding to research distracted driving, especially among young people.
It hopes to look at making distracted driving, including using a phone while driving, a social stigma and socially unacceptable.
Shepparton police Crime Prevention Office Leading Senior Constable Glenn Gibson said distraction was the cause of a majority of crashes.
‘‘Distractions can be drugs, both illicit and prescription, speeding, talking on the phone, lack of experience, the list just goes on,’’ he said.
Leading Sen Const Gibson said drivers needed to be responsible for driving to conditions and reduce distractions before they get in the car.
‘‘If you can control the distractions before you get in the car, you increase your chances of not being exposed to road trauma,’’ he said.
AAMI research indicated unsafe use of technology while driving was increasing, despite stricter laws and safety campaigns.
‘‘AAMI believes the key to combat the issue of distracted driving among younger drivers is creating a social stigma around it, much like we have with drunk-drivers. When texting and driving becomes socially unacceptable and uncool, we will start to see a change in behavior within this age group,’’ AAMI spokesman Reuben Aitchison said.
‘‘AAMI’s Crash Index research is showing some terrifying behaviours are on the rise.
‘‘More than half of young Aussie drivers have sent or read a text message while driving and more than a quarter have read emails or surfed the Internet while driving.’’
In November last year, tougher penalties were introduced for illegal use of mobile phones and other units that were not driver’s aids.
Penalties are a $433 fine and the loss of four demerit points.
Learners, P1 and P2 plated drivers must not use a phone at all while driving.
The sky is the limit for Wanganui Year 12 VCAL student Leigh Polan, 18, who decided to create two posters examining birdlife around the school.
The under 16 Pigeons kick started the YFNC's finals campaign with a resounding victory over the Paul Spargo led Scots College in the Grand Final of the AWJFL Elwyn Langford Shield at the Albury Sports Ground on Sunday.
Greater Shepparton City Council was successful in securing the National Cutting Horse Association Victorian Futurity Cutting Horse Championships for 2014 and 2015, with this year’s event scheduled from September 10-14 at Tatura Park.
An ad for the Healthy Ageing Project will be filmed in Echuca, Rushworth and Rochester today.
More than $15,000 was raised at a family day on Sunday. The event was to raise money for the families of Barry Purtell and Dave Lobb.
Book Week gets colourful turnout.
Deaprtment of Environment and Primary Industries unhappy about Mt Disappointment vandals.
Jerilderie Shire deputy mayor Ruth McRae handed the key over for the new Rural Fire Service station last Friday.
Farmers have a new weapon in the fight against mice.
Cobram kids learn about health with hospital as state-wide obesity campaign is launched.
Murray Irrigation to search for new boss after Anthony Couroupis finishes with the company.
A few anxious customers were outside the closed gates of the failed Bee-Jay Machinery business on Goulburn Valley Hwy in Shepparton on Tuesday morning, wondering what would become of deposits they had paid for tractors and other machinery.
The Benalla Indian Myna Action Group will pay a $1 per bird bounty on live birds delivered to CAL farm. National Party MP Bill Sykes donated $100 to fund the bounty.
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