Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Older Driver Licensing Review Announced

Tue, 12 Oct 2004

Older Driver Licensing Review Announced

The older driver licensing system which requires people aged 80 and over to renew their licence every two years is to be reviewed.

---------------------------------

The older driver licensing system which requires people aged 80 and over to renew their licence every two years is to be reviewed, Minister for Transport Safety Harry Duynhoven announced today.

Led by the Ministry of Transport, the Review of Older Driver Licensing will be conducted in association with interest groups representing older people - including Grey Power and the NZ Returned Services Association - medical associations and transport organisations. The Ministry of Transport is due to report back to the Minister in June 2005.

The Review will take a long-term look at licensing policy for older people.

The Minister also expressed his support for several changes to the current system which could be introduced next year. These include the option of a conditional licence which would allow older people to drive within a 10km radius of their home.

The proposed amendment to the Driver Licensing Rule will also provide for two other changes: extension of the time allowed for older people to renew their licence from 60 days to six months before its expiry, and removal of the "automatic only" condition. This means, in the future, older people who sit their licence in an automatic transmission vehicle will be able to drive either an automatic or manual vehicle, instead of being limited to an automatic only. It is anticipated that these policy changes will be approved early next year and introduced later in 2005.

"As part of the New Zealand Transport Strategy, the government is committed to improving access and mobility," Mr Duynhoven said. "We realise that for many older people the ability to drive is the key to continued independence - losing their licence can have a profound impact on their lives. At the same time, we have to balance maintaining mobility for older drivers with the need to provide for the safety of all road users."

Grey Power National President Graham Stairmand welcomed the announcement. "Grey Power are pleased the government is taking these positive steps towards removing barriers to mobility for older New Zealanders and we look forward to making a positive contribution to the Review of Older Driver Licensing," he said. "For our members, it's a move in the right direction."

Announcement of the Review and other initiatives was accompanied by the release of two research papers commissioned by the government to help direct the future development of older driver licensing policy.

These are "The Sullivan Report" - an independent review of older driver crash statistics and how they are used by the Land Transport Safety Authority to determine older drivers' safety risk - and a scoping paper "Older People and Transport" by the New Zealand Institute for Research on Ageing (NZiRA). This study examines the transport patterns of older people, the barriers they face in achieving their transport needs and what is being done to address these.

A further study by the NZiRA, "Coping Without a Car", is due for release in November by the Minister for Senior Citizens.

"The research highlights that older driver licensing is an extremely complex issue and one that will be of increasing importance as New Zealand's population ages," said Mr Duynhoven. "There has been a 66% increase in the number of drivers aged 80 and over since 1999, when the current licensing system was introduced.

"Development of licensing policy is an ongoing process influenced by a wide range of evidence including age-related health and medical factors and data on older driver crash risk.

"Older drivers are relatively safe - most drive conservatively, travel shorter distances and tend to be self regulating, giving up their licence when their driving ability slips. However, as a result of ageing and medical conditions, there can be rapid deterioration in an older person's ability to drive safely.

"The research also shows there are few alternative options to driving and this is a challenge for future policy development.

"The government is open to informed debate on the issues surrounding older driver relicensing and to exploring different options for delivering the best system in the future."

Full copies of the research papers "Older People and Transport" and "Older Driver Crash Statistics" (The Sullivan Report) are available on http://www.transport.govt.nz/current/issues/

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election