Some changes to the graduated driver licensing system are being rolled out over the next 18 months.
Mobile phone ban for P2 drivers
the first of which is a mobile phone ban for P2 drivers while driving or riding which comes into effect on 1 December 2016. Currently a P2 driver or rider can use a hands-free kit and make and receive calls on the phone. It won’t be permitted to use a phone at all after 1 December 2016, presumably unless it’s a navigation device attached to a cradle, or is supplying music via Bluetooth.
Driver Qualification Test scrapped
It’s currently a requirement for P2 drivers to take a Driver Qualification Test in order to get an unrestricted. This will be scrapped from 1 November 2017.
P2 licence extension for suspended drivers
From 1 November 2017 the minimum tenure for P2 licence holders will be extended by six months each time they receive a licence suspension for demerit point offences or higher risk offences. The tenure extension will not apply if the suspension is not related to a road offence, such as defaulting on a fine or on medical grounds. The suspension period is not included in the tenure period.
Hazard Perception Test now a requirement for learner licencees
The Hazard Perception Test, which is currently a requirement for P1 drivers to progress to a P2 licence, will be shifted to be a requirement for learner drivers to progress to a P1 licence from 1 November 2017.