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									AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
Regulatory Impact Statement
      November 1998




                                        Report to:
              National Road Transport Commission

                                     Prepared by:
                                        R Ungars
AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES, Regulatory Impact Statement – November 1998

Report to: National Road Transport Commission

Prepared by: R Ungars

ISBN: 0 642 54440 9
REPORT OUTLINE


Date: November 1998
ISBN Number: 0 642 54440 9
Title and Subtitle: Australian Road Rules Regulatory Impact Statement
Performing Organisation and Address Details:
Mr R Ungars
9 Yarilla Road
SASSAFRAS VIC 3787
NRTC Contact:     Ian Shepherd, Project Manager – Ph (03) 9321 8444
Type of Report:   Regulatory Impact Statement
Objective:        To improve safety and transport efficiency by providing a nationally uniform or
                  consistent set of Road Rules.
NRTC Program:     Completion of initial reform package
Key Milestones: Circulation by Austroads and the NRTC of the draft Australian Road Rules for public
                comment in January 1995. The NRTC becoming responsible for co-ordinating the
                development of the Australian Road Rules in January 1995. Further drafts circulated
                late in 1995 and 1996. Discussion of the Australian Road Rules by Transport Agency
                Chief Executives in October 1998.
Summary:          This Regulatory Impact Statement assesses the impact of introducing a nationally
                  uniform or consistent set of road law for drivers, riders, passengers and pedestrians.
                  The proposed rules are largely based on current State and Territory law. Those rules
                  which are likely to have a significant impact, either financially or behaviourally, have
                  been assessed in greater detail.
                  The cost of introducing the Australian Road Roles is estimated to be between $53
                  million and $79 million. Benefits cannot be quantified. Benefits are expected to
                  include:
                     a contribution to the reduction in crashes and resultant crashes;
                     reduction in driver misunderstandings and conflict situations;
                     savings over time in administrative costs;
                     the potential to undertake a co-ordinated promotion and awareness campaign;
                      and
                     reduction in the time and effort required of drivers in familiarisation with other
                      State and Territory requirements.
Purpose:          For information
Key Words:        Road rules, drivers, riders, bicycles, vehicles, safety, signs, jurisdictions.
                                   FOREWORD


A major responsibility of the National Road Transport Commission is to develop and
implement national road transport reforms which promote safety and efficiency and
reduce the costs of administration and the environmental impact of road transport.
The reforms include technical and operating standards and rules and procedures for the
regulation of vehicles and their drivers. The Australian Road Rules are a significant
contribution to meeting the requirements to develop nationally uniform or consistent
road transport regulations. The Light Vehicles Agreement states that the NRTC shall:
     … as a matter of priority to develop and/or maintain national standards
     and associated codes of practice as appropriate in the following areas
     … the traffic code covering interaction and behaviour of all road users; …
This Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) assesses the impact of introducing the draft
Australian Road Rules. The RIS accompanies the Australian Road Rules in the
submission of the Rules to the Australian Transport Council for voting.
                                      SUMMARY


The Australian Road Rules contain the basic rules of the road for drivers and riders of
motor vehicles, riders of bicycles, pedestrians, passengers and others.
The Australian Road Rules have been developed by the NRTC and State and Territory
road authorities. Work was originally commenced by Austroads in the early 1990s
transferring to the NRTC in 1995.
The Office of Legislative Drafting of the Commonwealth’s Attorney-General’s
Department has undertaken the final drafting of the Australian Road Rules.
The Australian Road Rules are largely based on current State and Territory law. A
small number of laws allow for local variations to take into account varying conditions
and practices in the States and Territories. It is hoped that over time these variations
can be further reduced through a maintenance program.
The Australian Road Rules were widely circulated for public comment in January 1995.
Approximately 460 submissions were received. Further drafts were developed with road
authorities and police in consultation with motoring organisations, local government and
other interested parties. During the last year, the NRTC, road authorities and the police
have consulted extensively in a co-operative development of the Australian Road Rules.
Similarly, the Office of Legislative Drafting has extensively consulted State and Territory
Parliamentary Counsel. Comments received have been generally supportive.
Implementation of the Australian Road Rules is expected to cost between $53 million
and $79 million over a period of time as States and Territories update relevant traffic
engineering practice. The total benefits cannot be quantified accurately but are
expected to include:
   a contribution to the reduction in crashes and resultant casualties;
   reduction in driver misunderstandings and conflict situations;
   savings over time in administrative costs such as the production of printed road
    rules and education materials
   the potential to undertake a co-ordinated promotion and awareness campaign,
    supported by enforcement as appropriate; and
   reduction in the time and effort required of drivers in familiarisation with other State
    and Territory requirements.
Queensland and New South Wales are expected to proceed in July 1999 and
September 1999 respectively. It is expected that each of the other States and
Territories will commence implementation from 1st December 1999, with some changes
implemented over a transitional period.
CONTENTS


                                                                                                                                           Page
REPORT OUTLINE
FOREWARD
SUMMARY

1.   INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................. 1

2.   IDENTIFICATION OF THE PROBLEM .......................................................................................... 1
     2.1.     EXISTING SITUATION ................................................................................................................ 1
     2.2.     SCOPE OF PROPOSAL .............................................................................................................. 1
     2.3.     SAFETY ISSUES ....................................................................................................................... 1
     2.4.     MOVEMENT BETWEEN STATES AND TERRITORIES ...................................................................... 3
     2.5.     INTERNATIONAL CONTEXT ........................................................................................................ 5
     2.6.     W ORKING TOWARDS UNIFORMITY ............................................................................................ 6
3.   THE DESIRED OBJECTIVES OF THE PROPOSAL ..................................................................... 7
     3.1.     OVERVIEW .............................................................................................................................. 7
     3.2.     BASIC PRINCIPLES ................................................................................................................... 7
     3.3.     SAFETY OBJECTIVES ................................................................................................................ 8
4.   IDENTIFICATION OF ALTERNATIVES ......................................................................................... 8

5.   CONSULTATION ............................................................................................................................ 9

6.   IMPACT ANALYSIS ........................................................................................................................ 9
     6.1.     URBAN SPEED LIMIT .............................................................................................................. 10
     6.2.     GIVING W AY TO BUSES .......................................................................................................... 11
     6.3.     U-TURNS AT SIGNALISED INTERSECTIONS................................................................................ 13
     6.4.     STOPPING AT CHILDREN’S CROSSING ..................................................................................... 14
     6.5.     KEEPING TO THE LEFT ON A MULTI-LANE ROAD ........................................................................ 15
     6.6.     OVERTAKING ON THE LEFT ON A MULTI-LANE ROAD ................................................................. 16
     6.7.     KEEPING TO THE LEFT OF TWO CONTINUOUS PARALLEL DIVIDING LINES ................................... 17
     6.8.     RIDING ALONGSIDE MORE THAN ONE RIDER IN A LANE ............................................................ 18
     6.9.     NO STOPPING SIGNS AND NO PARKING SIGNS AND ROAD MARKINGS ....................................... 19
     6.10.    BICYCLES ON FOOTPATHS ...................................................................................................... 20
     6.11.    W EARING SEATBELTS AND CHILD RESTRAINTS - PERSONS UNDER SIXTEEN YEARS OLD............ 22
     6.12.    RIDING OF W HEELED RECREATIONAL DEVICES AND W HEELED TOYS ........................................ 23
     6.13.    USE OF HAND HELD MOBILE PHONES ..................................................................................... 24
     6.14.    EXEMPTIONS FOR THE DRIVER OF A TOW TRUCK ..................................................................... 24
     6.15.    SECURING A VEHICLE ............................................................................................................. 25
     6.16.    STOPPING ON A CREST OR A CURVE ....................................................................................... 26
     6.17.    IMPACT OF THE DRAFT AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES ON COMPETITION .......................................... 26
7.   THE COST OF INTRODUCING AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES ................................................... 27
     7.1.     OVERVIEW ............................................................................................................................ 27
     7.2.     TOTAL COSTS OF IMPLEMENTATION ........................................................................................ 27
     7.3.     ANALYSIS OF COST COMPONENTS .......................................................................................... 28
8.    THE BENEFITS OF INTRODUCING AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES ........................................... 30
      8.1.     REDUCTION IN CRASHES AND INJURIES ................................................................................... 30
      8.2.     REDUCTION IN DRIVER MISUNDERSTANDINGS AND CONFLICTS ................................................. 31
      8.3.     SAVINGS IN ADMINISTRATION COSTS AND EDUCATION MATERIALS ............................................ 31
      8.4.     CO-ORDINATED PROMOTION AND AWARENESS CAMPAIGN ....................................................... 31
      8.5.     DRIVER FAMILIARISATION WITH REQUIREMENTS ...................................................................... 32
9.    SUMMARY JUSTIFICATION ........................................................................................................ 32

10. IMPLEMENTATION ...................................................................................................................... 33

REFERENCES
APPENDIX A: SUMMARY OF SCOPE - AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
APPENDIX B: SUMMARY OF PUBLIC COMMENTS
APPENDIX C: SUMMARY OF MAIN CHANGES IN STATES AND TERRITORIES
APPENDIX D: FURTHER ANALYSIS: U-TURNS AT SIGNALISED INTERSECTIONS
APPENDIX E: FURTHER ANALYSIS: FOOTPATH CYCLING
APPENDIX F: FURTHER ANALYSIS: HAND HELD MOBILE PHONES
APPENDIX G: COSTS OF INTRODUCING AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                         1




1. INTRODUCTION
This Regulatory Impact Statement assesses the overall impact of introducing a national
set of road traffic rules. These are to be introduced as the Australian Road Rules and
will be implemented in the States and Territories through local legislation.

2. IDENTIFICATION OF THE PROBLEM

2.1.     Existing Situation
Currently all States and Territories develop their own regulations. There have been
previous attempts to develop national road rules in the form of the National Road Traffic
Code. As a result, greater consistency has been achieved between States and
Territories on most safety related issues. There remain, however, a number of
differences which the Australian Road Rules seek to resolve.

2.2.     Scope of Proposal
The Australian Road Rules cover the basic requirements that drivers, motorcyclists,
bicyclists and pedestrians need to follow in using the road system. They do not cover
provisions relating to driver licensing, vehicle registration, roadworthiness, drink driving,
driving hours and log book requirements, or carriage of licence. These will be covered
by other national legislation or remain part of State and Territory laws. Compliance
provisions will be developed by each State and Territory.
The scope of the Rules is summarised in Appendix A.

2.3.     Safety Issues
Sound traffic management demands that all road users react in basically the same
manner in similar situations. Even moderate traffic speeds leave little room for error
should one road user fail to take the required action in a conflict situation with another.
The responses made by road users should be predictable and traffic law must address
itself to real-world situations to eliminate conflict to the greatest extent possible. In a
number of vital areas this cannot be done since drivers, in particular, may be
responding to different requirements because of lack of uniformity between jurisdictions.
The cost of road crashes to the nation is estimated at some $6,000 million a year. As
noted in the National Road Safety Strategy, the road toll places a heavy burden on
medical, health and welfare services. Seventy percent of the most serious trauma cases
in hospitals have been injured in road crashes. Road crashes have been the major
cause of death for those under the age of 45. They account for more years of potential
working life lost than all forms of heart disease.
2                                                     Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



Australia has reached a position where it is now a world leader in road safety. Its
success is illustrated in the following figures:
                                Fatalities - Australia
                              1980             3,274
                              1985             2,941
                              1990             2,331
                              1995             2,017
                              1996             1,977
                              1997             1,761

In terms of international comparison, Australia’s rate of 1.8 fatalities per 10,000
registered vehicles is significantly lower than the majority of OECD countries (1995
figures). It ranks equal fourth (with Japan and Iceland) in road safety performance on
the basis of this comparison.

                        Fatality Rates per 10,000 Vehicles
                    Australia/ Selected OECD Countries (1995)
                          Sweden                   1.3
                          Norway                   1.3
                      United Kingdom               1.5
                        Switzerland                1.7
                          Australia                1.8
                    (Federal Office of Road Safety)

This has been achieved by a concerted national effort especially throughout the 1990s
with important steps taken to reduce drink-driving, achieve more effective enforcement
of speed limits, provide significant investment towards eliminating road and traffic
hazards, and undertaking mass media programs promoting road safety awareness
throughout the community.
Surveys (RACV 1996; Cairney 1989) have shown, however, that there is an incomplete
knowledge of many aspects of road law. This is of obvious concern from a road safety
perspective. This applies to misunderstanding of give way requirements, pedestrian
signals, observance of double lines, painted arrows, roundabout priority and driving in
lanes. It suggests the need for a systematic approach to the clarification and
communication of road law requirements.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      3




2.4.     Movement between States and Territories
The benefits of uniformity are likely to be significant for those Australian road users
travelling interstate, and those citizens changing their State of residence. If road users
are to understand and observe traffic regulations and the meaning of control devices,
ideally they should be the same. This also makes the tasks of enforcement,
administration and education much easier. In essence, situations similar in nature
should be treated similarly.
While freight-carrying vehicles and buses on average travel greater distances, there are
far more passenger vehicles on the road and this category accounts for some 75% of
the total distance travelled in Australia.
As would be expected, the vast majority (96%) of travel is within the State and Territory
of vehicle registration, with 53% of this in a capital city area. Nevertheless, interstate
travel still represents 4% or some 7,400 million kilometres of travel (out of a total of
166,500 million kilometres). The proportion of interstate travel generated from individual
States and Territories varies as shown below:

            State/Territory of                        Million Kilometres      %
            Registration
            New South Wales                                1,814              25
            Victoria                                       1,844              25
            Queensland                                     1,731              23
            Western Australia                                153               2
            South Australia                                  959              13
            Tasmania                                          71               1
            Northern Territory                               123               2
            ACT                                              671               9
                                              TOTAL        7,366            100
 (ABS - Survey of Motor Vehicle Use - September 1995)
4                                                        Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Uniform road rules have a particular importance for those who relocate their residence
from one State to another. The extent to which this occurs is shown in the following
table:

                   State/Territory                   Interstate Migration
                                                           (Arrivals)
             New South Wales                              92,000
             Victoria                                     63,000
             Queensland                                  108,000
             Western Australia                            35,000
             South Australia                              28,000
             Tasmania                                     11,000
             Northern Territory                           21,000
             ACT                                          19,000
                                       TOTAL            377,000
             (ABS - Migration Australia - 1996/97)

Based on the above numbers, around 4 million people would be expected to change
their State or Territory of residence over the next ten years.
FORS analyses (Monograph 4, 1996) of the involvement of interstate drivers of
passenger vehicles in crashes shows that one in 16 fatalities on Australian roads
involves a driver with an interstate licence. Based on the 1997 national road toll of 1,761
fatalities, the number of deaths involving interstate driving is more than 100 per annum.
Interstate drivers are more likely to be driving longer distances in rural areas, where the
rate of fatalities per distance travelled is substantially higher than in metropolitan areas.
Importantly, it is estimated that on a distance travelled basis, the number of people
killed in fatal crashes involving interstate drivers is twice that for local drivers.
The involvement of interstate drivers in fatal crashes varies amongst the States and
Territories from a low of 3% in Victoria to 18% in the Northern Territory. It is some 17%
in the Australian Capital Territory, around 8% in New South Wales and Queensland,
and 6% in South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.
Driver error such as failure to observe signals or road rules is involved in around 20% of
interstate driver fatal crashes (compared with 17% for local drivers) (FORS 1995).
If road users travelling or moving between States and Territories are to be given a
greater chance to understand and observe traffic signs and their meanings, in an
unfamiliar driving environment, ideally they should be uniform.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                       5




2.5.     International Context
Tourism is one of the major contributors to Australia’s economic activity. Many sectors
benefit from it. International tourism - with over 4 million visitors a year - accounts for
around a quarter of total tourism activity. The greatest sources of international tourists
are Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Korea and Singapore. In terms of nights
spent by visitors according to State and Territory destination, the proportions are as
follows:

                                State/Territory            % of total
                              New South Wales                 39
                              Victoria                        17
                              Queensland                      22
                              South Australia                  4
                              Western Australia               11
                              Tasmania                         2
                              Northern Territory               3
                              ACT                              2
                  (Bureau of Tourism Research - International Visitor Survey - 1996)

Driving in strange surroundings is inherently more dangerous than in familiar territory,
increasing the risk of being involved in a fatal crash.
Analysis (FORS 1995) of the involvement of overseas drivers in such crashes in
Australia shows that they are relatively infrequent (some 1.5% of fatal crashes). This
still represents some 30 deaths each year (there is a very small number of international
tourists killed as pedestrians as well). Over 60% occur on country roads, compared with
45% for Australian drivers. Nevertheless, these events have an important impact on the
assessment of Australia as a safe place in which to travel.
There is an over-representation of crashes involving overseas drivers in Queensland,
Western Australia and the Northern Territory - compared with their share of all fatal
crashes - with a significant share of the total number also occurring in New South Wales
and Victoria.
The more important risk factors are speed and alcohol (but to a lesser extent than local
drivers), as well as fatigue. A higher proportion do not wear seat belts.
Although the extent to which lack of knowledge of road rules contributed to these
crashes is not known, as a matter of principle a common set of road rules must be seen
as an important element in contributing to the safety of international road users.
6                                                   Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




2.6.   Working Towards Uniformity
Uniformity in road traffic law has been sought since the Australian Transport Advisory
Council was established in 1946, with the National Road Traffic Code first endorsed in
1962. This was followed in 1975 by the publication of the Australian Manual of Uniform
Traffic Control Devices as an Australian Standard (covering road traffic signs, signals
and pavement markings).
In turn, organisations such as the previous National Association of Australian State
Road Authorities, and more recently Austroads and the National Road Transport
Commission have pursued the goal of greater uniformity, culminating in the proposed
Australian Road Rules.
Traffic law has particular significance in Australia. It is one of the most highly motorised
nations in the world with some 11 million motor vehicles - giving a ratio of around 600
vehicles per 1,000 people. There are over 12 million driver and rider licences on issue.
Australia is a highly mobile society, and heavily dependent on road travel for the
movement of people and goods.
The development over the years of a more national approach to road safety is evident
in areas such as vehicle safety standards, accident blackspot treatments, co-ordination
of research and co-operation in undertaking road user behaviour programs.
Australia is a relatively integrated community in which the impediments to uniformity
should be less formidable than in countries of great diversity. A high degree of
urbanisation occurs within each State, with the capital cities and main provincial towns
containing the major proportion of the population. The whole range of urban traffic
situations is therefore commonly shared throughout Australia.
The vast majority of motorists would be expected to welcome one basic set of road
rules for the nation. This is re-inforced by the submissions received during 1994/95,
when public comment on a previous draft of the road rules was sought (460
organisations and individuals provided comments). Peak organisations such as State
motoring bodies, the insurance industry, key government agencies and professional
bodies expressed support for uniformity.
It is likely that motorists would place a tangible value on updating, simplifying and
introducing uniform road rules. This has not been quantified. However, if the 12 million
licence holders in Australia were to make a notional one-off contribution of only $5 per
head to achieve this ($60 million total) it would be well in excess of the minimum
estimated cost of doing so.
As the nation approaches the year 2000, there is a unique opportunity to achieve a goal
first envisaged by the Australian Transport Advisory Council some 50 years ago.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        7




3. THE DESIRED OBJECTIVES OF THE PROPOSAL

3.1.     Overview
The National Road Transport Commission is required to develop national road rules
under the Light Vehicles Agreement. This provides for the Commission, under Part VII
Clause 17(2)(a):
           “as a matter of priority to develop and/or maintain national standards
           and associated codes of practice as appropriate in the following areas:
           …        (v) the traffic code covering interaction and behaviour of all road
                    users”.
The principal objectives of the Australian Road Rules are to:
   introduce uniform regulations throughout Australia for all road users;
   enhance mobility and safety by updating and simplifying traffic regulations; and
   reduce cost and achieve administrative efficiency on a national basis.

3.2.     Basic Principles
Regulations and their enforcement play an important role in the road traffic system.
They introduce a degree of consistency and predicability in behaviour essential for the
safe and effective operation of the system. While individual motorists may feel
disadvantaged by a particular rule, regulations exist for the overall advantage of
motorists and the community at large.
It is important that the public expenditure on roads and traffic engineering infrastructure
and private investment in vehicles result in the greatest possible economic and social
returns. These are major investments, with the desired outcome of safe and efficient
mobility. To meet this objective, traffic regulations should satisfy a number of
requirements:
   appear reasonable to the motoring public and other road users;
   be readily interpreted by road users in real traffic situations;
   be consistent with other requirements; and
   be enforceable, with those regulations framed in objective terms being more easily
    enforced.
Traffic regulations, while not the only factor which influences road user behaviour, are
the cornerstone of orderly operation of the road traffic system. This has been a basic
principle underlying the development of the Australian Road Rules by State and
Territory representatives.
8                                                    Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




3.3.   Safety Objectives
Road users include those who have reasonable knowledge of the rules which,
combined with on-road experience, enables them to operate safely in conflict situations
and difficult traffic conditions. The younger age group, on the other hand, through
inexperience, lack of awareness and youthfulness itself is at far greater risk. Those in
the age group 17 - 25 make up 14% of Australia’s population. This group, however, is
significantly over-represented in road fatalities, comprising some 30% of the total. The
effective communication of road law requirements to this age group in particular
represents a great challenge in Australia’s efforts to reduce the road toll in the future.
The introduction of uniform road rules would provide a unique opportunity to co-ordinate
a major campaign in all States and Territories to re-focus road users’ awareness of their
obligations in such important areas as giving way, driving in lanes, U-turns, observance
of road signs and markings and behaviour at roundabouts.
Such a campaign, along with other State and Territory road safety programs, could form
a key element of national road safety activities.
Although road safety is a key objective of road traffic law, the Australian Road Rules by
themselves cannot embrace all of the requirements pertinent to road safety. They do
not cover provisions relating to, for example, driver licensing, vehicle registration,
roadworthiness and drink - driving. These are contained in other State and Territory
provisions and other modules of the NRTC work program.
The proposed Rules therefore represent one aspect of the many elements which make
up the road safety system. There are clear benefits through the elimination of
anomalous situations and bringing the rules up to date. In addition, their promulgation
would be associated with a concerted education program throughout the States and
Territories, reinforcing awareness of road law requirements.
The adoption of uniform traffic rules is consistent with Australia’s continuing efforts to
achieve one of the best road safety records in the world.

4. IDENTIFICATION OF ALTERNATIVES
In developing the Australian Road Rules, alternative policies have been considered for
almost every rule in an effort to achieve best practice amongst jurisdictions. A number
of rules allow for local variations. These rules, generally, represent those that are not
nationally significant. It is expected that, over time, these will be reduced as practices in
jurisdictions become more uniform.
One alternative to national road rules is for each State and Territory to continue to
develop and implement its own regulations. With co-operative effort, this may lead to
greater consistency in regulations. However, this approach is not compatible with the
overriding objective of national uniformity.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                       9



Another option would be to adopt the road rules by template legislation whereby each
jurisdiction adopts the law of one jurisdiction. It was originally envisaged that all
jurisdictions would adopt Australian Capital Territory law but due to the rules having
local variations and because they do not “cover the field”, in the short term this is not
practical.

5. CONSULTATION
Consultation has been extensive since the first draft of the Australian Road Rules
prepared by Austroads in 1992.
A series of meetings with representatives from States and Territories were held
commencing in April 1993. In late 1994 agreement was reached on a version suitable
for public consultation and public comments were sought during 1995. Some 4,000
copies of the draft Rules, together with a preliminary evaluation of impact, were
distributed. A total of 460 organisations and individuals provided comment. A summary
of the comments received is contained in Appendix B.
Comments were considered by the States and Territories resulting in many changes to
the draft. A revised draft was circulated to road and transport authorities and other
organisations in December 1995. Following a meeting between representatives of
government agencies in February 1996 to discuss major unresolved issues, a further
revised draft was circulated to road authorities, Police Forces, local government,
motoring organisations and others in November 1996. This was followed by a meeting
in December 1996 and a series of teleconferences in February and March 1997.
Further consultations have taken place during 1997 and 1998, involving all States and
Territories, with amendments reflected in the current proposals now put forward for
consideration. In particular, during 1998, representatives of road authorities, Police, the
Office of Legislative Drafting (Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department), State
and Territory Parliamentary Counsel and the National Road Transport Commission
have worked closely on several interim drafts in developing the Australian Road Rules.
In October 1998, the penultimate draft was circulated to Transport Agency Chief
Executives (TACE).
In light of comments received from TACE, a number of changes have been made to the
Australian Road Rules.

6. IMPACT ANALYSIS
The Australian Road Rules aim to influence the behaviour of road users in a way which
achieves greater safety and efficiency in the operation of the road traffic system. The
proposed regulations perform three main functions:
   they resolve conflicts (such as who has to give way);
   they prescribe behaviour which is necessary for the orderly operation of the system
    (such as keeping a vehicle in a single lane); and
   they prohibit behaviour which is detrimental to the operation of the system (such as
    driving to the right of unbroken double lines).
There has been considerable progress towards the finalisation of the individual rules on
the basis of either unanimous or majority decision by jurisdictions at officer level. Given
10                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules


the large number of provisions involved, it is not practical to discuss each one in great
detail. Those that are highlighted in this analysis comprise issues which (due to the level
of public comment or discussion throughout the development of the road rules) were
determined to have a significant impact either financially or behaviourally.
Implementation of the Rules will provide a transitional period before full implementation,
with particular application where costs of replacing signs or linemarkings are involved.
This will enable the spreading of cost over a reasonable period of time (in many cases
as part of general maintenance programs).
The Rules apply to vehicles, persons and animals on roads and “road related areas”.
Road related areas include footpaths, nature strips and parking areas. The Rules are
generally expressed to apply to drivers of vehicles, since they are the largest category
of road users. A driver is a person driving or otherwise in control of a vehicle (for
example a person steering and pushing a stalled motor vehicle). The definition of
vehicle is broad and includes, for example, motorised wheelchairs that can travel over
10 km/h and animals with riders. However, it does not include trains (driving of which is
not covered in the Rules) or wheeled toys and wheeled recreational devices. Riders of
wheeled toys and wheeled recreational devices are treated as pedestrians.
A comparison between the more significant Australian Road Rules and current
requirements in States and Territories is contained in Appendix C.
An overview of the cost of changes is provided in the following section.

6.1.   Urban Speed Limit

Proposal
It is proposed that the default speed limit to apply in a built-up area is 60 km/h.

Impact
This limit currently applies in all States and Territories.

Considerations
There has been much consideration given to the merits of a lower limit, in particular 50
km/h, compared with the current limit. Proponents suggest a significant reduction in
road casualties would result.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        11



Australia’s limit is higher than many European countries (eg France, Germany, Norway,
Sweden), some states in the USA and New Zealand - which have a 50km/h limit.
Experience suggests that benefits would accrue in particular to the more vulnerable
road user groups (pedestrians and bicyclists). The report of a recent three month trial in
a number of local government areas in New South Wales indicated a reduction of 1.5 to
2 km/h in average speeds; in the trial areas there was a 7 per cent reduction in the
number of casualties and casualty crashes beyond the road toll reductions achieved in
the rest of the State. There was varied community support for the lower limit with more
support in urban communities than in rural areas.
Some jurisdictions are already applying a lower limit in specific precincts and areas.
In the December 1995 draft of the Australian Road Rules, the Commission proposed
that the general urban speed limit be reduced to 50 km/h (ie. that the speed limit would
be 50 km/h in urban areas), unless sign-posted otherwise. It was expected that all
arterial roads and most sub-arterial and collector roads would be sign-posted at higher
maximum speeds that 50 km/h. The practical effect of the proposal would therefore be
to apply a 50 km/h limit on local streets.
The 50 km/h general urban speed limit was proposed on the basis of significant
reductions in injury costs. There was also strong support for a reduction from 60 km/h
(to either 50 km/h or 40 km/h) in the public comment on the draft Regulatory Impact
Statement.
Ministers considered the issue at a number of Ministerial Council meetings and it was
determined that the Australian Road Rules would be progressed with a 60 km/h speed
limit and the Rules would be amended in future should Ministers wish to re-consider the
general urban speed limit.

6.2.     Giving Way to Buses

Proposal
It is proposed that drivers give way to buses which have a Give Way sign on the rear
and are entering a traffic stream in a built-up area.

Impact
The maximum speed limit in an area to which this rule applies will, in the majority of
cases, not exceed 80 km/h. The proposed rule has implications for all jurisdictions,
although it reflects the reality of the operation of buses in most jurisdictions. Most States
and Territories have some form of Give Way sign on the rear of the bus, but some do
not meet proposed requirements. There is no requirement to give way in South
Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory. Costs would be involved in some
jurisdictions to introduce recommended signs, if they wished to make use of the rule.
12                                                 Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Considerations
The alternative proposal considered was to specify a maximum speed zone
(eg. 60 km/h) where the rule should apply in pace of a built-up area. The proposal was
developed in consultation with the States and Territories as a reasonable compromise
on existing practices. Public comment on the proposal was supportive of a give way
rule, but several commentators queried the specifics of the rule. Seven submissions
suggested the use of specific speed zones in place of built-up areas because of the
difficulty of identifying what a built-up area is. The maximum speed limits suggested
were 60 km/h (1), 70 km/h (4) and 80 km/h (2). In addition, four submissions suggested
that the give way rule should apply everywhere.
Two submissions opposed the rule outright because they considered it was dangerous
and there was no reason why buses should receive automatic right-of-way. On the other
hand, six submissions supported the rule outright and another five supported it but
suggested that an obligation be placed on bus drivers to take care when pulling out into
a traffic system.
The impacts of the proposal (ie. that drivers of other vehicles give way to buses entering
traffic streams in built-up areas) could include:
    the cost of fitting signs to vehicles;
    changes in the number of crashes; and
    delays to occupants of buses and other vehicles.
Buses in most jurisdictions have some form of give way sign fitted on the rear, although
not all meet the proposed requirements (the cost of a sign is estimated at $30). The
introduction of the recommended signs can be phased in so that implementation costs
are likely to be small.
The road safety impact of the proposed rule could not be assessed due to limitations in
the available data. The number of crashes into the rear of buses is, however, small (3 %
of serious injury rear end crashes in New South Wales in 1993 and 0.5 % of rear end
crashes in Victoria between 1991 and 1994).
The proportion of crashes by speed zone in New South Wales and Victoria differs, with
relatively more crashes in 60 km/h zones in Victoria and relatively more crashes in 80
km/h zone in New South Wales. As noted above there is no speed restriction on the
give way rule in Victoria, yet there are relatively fewer crashes in high speed zones
compared to New South Wales where the give way rule applies only in 60 km/h zones.
One conclusion that could be drawn from this data is that the rule should apply
universally. This conclusion would be justified if uncertainty about whether the rule
applies or not is the cause of the higher proportion of crashes in 80 km/h zones in New
South Wales.
Another possible conclusion is that the crash numbers are too small to draw any
conclusions on safety grounds. The lack of any exposure data may support this
conclusion (ie. there may be a higher proportion of bus stops in 80 km/h zones in New
South Wales relative to Victoria).
An assessment of the influence of the proposed rule on delays to vehicles, compared
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        13


with existing provisions, would require extensive data which is not available. However,
changes in delays are most likely to occur where traffic flows are high. Traffic flows are
likely to be high in peak periods, on major roads and highly developed areas. Delays will
also be affected by the bus stop design.
It has not been possible to quantify the impacts of the proposal that drivers of other
vehicles give way to buses entering a traffic stream in built-up areas. It was developed
in consultation as a reasonable compromise on existing practice. The major concern
raised in the public comment was the definition of built-up area. The number of crashes
is small, so the different changes to the rule in States and Territories are likely to have a
small impact overall.

6.3.     U-turns at Signalised Intersections

Proposal
It is proposed that a driver must not make a U-turn at an intersection with traffic lights
unless there is a “U-turn Permitted” sign at the intersection.

Impact
In Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory, U-turns are allowed unless banned by a
sign. All other States and the Northern Territory currently ban U-turns at signalised
intersections as a general rule. Some States (Queensland, Western Australia,
Tasmania, Northern Territory) allow U-turns where signs permit. There would be
relatively small costs to States other than Victoria and the ACT to implement the
proposed change, where sites would need to be assessed for removal and erection of
signs.

Considerations
Two options have been considered:
   a sign-permissive approach similar to that which applies in four States and
    Territories; and
   a sign-prohibitive approach similar to that used in Victoria and the Australian Capital
    Territory.
The New South Wales and South Australian law (no U-turns under any circumstances)
was considered to be unnecessarily restrictive.
Under a sign-permissive approach, Victoria would incur costs of around $550,000
(signing and publicity programs) and the Australian Capital Territory around $370,000
for similar purposes (with some costs also possible in New South Wales if it chose to
install U-turn permitted signs).
14                                                   Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



Under a sign-prohibitive law, the affected States and Territories would incur costs of
approximately $3.6 million for signs and publicity, with high costs particularly in New
South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.
The overall implementation costs of a sign-prohibitive approach are three to four times
as great as the alternative (for further analysis see Appendix D).

6.4.   Stopping at Children’s Crossing

Proposal
It is proposed that a driver must stop if there is a pedestrian on or entering a children’s
crossing. (A children’s crossing is defined in terms of a place with “Children Crossing”
flags, or “Children’s Crossing” signs and alternating flashing twin yellow lights, between
two red and white posts on each side of the road. This encompasses current practice in
all States and Territories.)

Impact
Most jurisdictions use flags on children’s crossing. South Australia and Western
Australia use flashing lights - which is not supported by the Northern Territory.

Considerations

Give Way Requirements
The Northern Territory and Tasmania have suggested the use of the words “about to or
apparently about to” enter a children’s crossing as the basis for the give way rule. This
is not supported by other jurisdictions, on the basis that it would create uncertainty in
the minds of drivers, as a driver would be required to judge the intent of a child. This
would make enforcement more difficult.
Concern was also expressed regarding the message such a rule would give to children
(ie. that it was acceptable to step onto a crossing without looking as drivers are required
to stop). It was determined that this concern along with the problems of enforcement
outweigh any benefit additional words may provide.

Definition
South Australia and Western Australia have 200 and 80 flashing light children’s
crossings respectively, in lieu of the use of flags. To install flags at these crossings
would involve additional cost. The South Australian Department of Transport argued
against the requirement for flags on practical as well as cost grounds. The co-ordination
of the placement of flags with the switching on of the lights was problematical and may
lead to confusion for motorists.
It is doubtful if the installation and maintenance of flags in South Australia is justified if
the school zones are adequately (but differently) signed, speed limit signs are installed
and some form of school crossing warning (ie. flashing lights) is operating.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        15



6.5.     Keeping to the Left on a Multi-lane Road

Proposal
It is proposed that a driver on a multi-lane road must not drive in the right hand lane
where the speed limit is over 60 km/h or a “keep left unless overtaking” sign applies,
unless turning right, making a U-turn, overtaking, avoiding obstruction or traffic is
congested.

Impact
Most States and Territories have a keep left unless overtaking rule, only its application
varies (ie. the requirement only applies where there are signs or in speed zones greater
than 80 km/h, or in the case of Western Australia, on all multi-lane roads). The Northern
Territory has no such rule but requires drivers to drive in a manner that does not
obstruct, hinder or prevent the free passage of vehicles.

Considerations
Various alternative approaches have been considered including:
   a general keeping left requirement on multi-lane roads;
   using a criterion of over 80 km/h; and
   the requirement should only apply where signs are erected.
As proposed, the rule would apply to those roads where signed accordingly or where
the specified speed zones applied. The inclusion of the speed zone requirement would
reduce the need for extensive signing. Traffic flow benefits are more likely to occur on
multi-lane roads with higher speeds.
The alternative of a statutory requirement applying to all multi-lane roads would
eliminate the cost of signing, although signs would have to be removed in some States.
Concern was expressed by the Federal Office of Road Safety about the possible safety
implications of the option of a general keep left requirement, resulting from higher
speeds in the right lane, reduced following distance in the other lanes, the increased
incidence of lane changing and the reduced opportunity to make necessary lane
changes at the safest opportunity rather than under pressure. There could also be an
impact on carrying capacity with traffic concentrated in the left lanes rather than spread
over available lanes.
The application by sigh approach would have a cost disadvantage as signs would be
required on all roads where the rule was to apply. Although this approach has some
advantages such as:
   it enables signing of the appropriate road in terms of lane width, traffic flows, etc for
    application of the rule; and
   less publicity is likely to be required as drivers and riders in the majority of States
    and Territories are familiar with the ”keep left unless overtaking” signs and their
    intent.
As proposed, the rule requires either a sign or a speed limit to come into effect.
Including a speed limit may reduce the need for signs on some roads. Traffic flow
16                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules


benefits from the proposed rule are likely to occur on multi-lane roads with higher speed
limits. Selection of a cut-off speed limit is somewhat arbitrary.
Victoria argued for the rule to apply to roads with speed limits over 60 km/h on the basis
that it believes the public view that this rule should be more stringent and should be
coupled with a prohibition on overtaking on the left.
Two thirds of the submissions from public comment supported the “keep left unless
overtaking” rule as it appeared in the public comment version (restricted to over 80 km/h
zones or where signs are placed).
New South Wales argue that the application of the rule to speed zones over 60 km/h
would have road safety implications for heavily used urban arterial roads with 70 and 80
km/h speed limits. This would be a result of:
    higher speeds in the right lane;
    reduced following distances in the other lane(s);
    increased incidence of lane changing; and
    reduced opportunity to make necessary lane changes “at leisure”.
New South Wales also argue that many Sydney arterials with three (3) lanes have
speed limits of 60, 70 and 80 km/h and that this rule may create unnecessary confusion
as the rule forces the left lanes to be used and as they become congested the centre
lane can be used. It would also generate additional lane changing as conditions
change from congested to free flowing at signalised intersections.
The item was discussed by Transport Agency Chief Executives in October 1998, as a
result of which the rule has been re-drafted to apply to multi-lane roads with a speed
limit greater than 60 km/h.

6.6.    Overtaking on the Left on a Multi-lane Road

Proposal
The Australian Road Rules propose to permit overtaking in the left lanes of multi-lane
roads.

Impact
The proposal reflects current practice in all jurisdictions however an alternative proposal
was suggested recently by Victoria of prohibiting overtaking on the left of a multi-lane
road. This would be consistent with European practice on autobahns and motorways.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                       17




Considerations
While there appears to be some merit in the alternative proposal (as it appears to work
effectively in Europe), the rule is premised on there being adherence to the “keep to the
left” rule. Currently in Australia there is not a strong culture of keeping to the left.
Queensland indicated it might take at least five (5) years before its drivers could accept
the alternative proposal.
In addition, introduction of both changes (keeping to the left and a prohibition on
overtaking on the left) may cause driver frustration where one driver is (illegally) driving
in the right hand lane and following vehicles are unable to (legally) pass on the inside
lane.
Rather than adopting a prohibition on overtaking to the left on a multi-lane road, it would
be preferable to more fully explore the impact as part of a maintenance program of the
Australian Road Rules. This would also allow for an indication of a suitable timing for its
introduction.

6.7.     Keeping to the Left of Two Continuous Parallel Dividing Lines

Proposal
It is proposed that a vehicle must not cross or travel to the right of continuous double
centre lines (except to avoid a traffic hazard in safety).

Impact
This regulation applies in all jurisdictions except New South Wales, Western Australia
and the Northern Territory (which allow the crossing of double centre lines to enter or
leave a road). To comply with the provision, they would need to incur costs in order to
provide an appropriate discontinuity on double lines.

Considerations
To comply with the proposed requirement, current practice in New South Wales,
Western Australia and the Northern Territory would need to be modified to provide gaps
in existing double lines. Approximately 5,800 kilometres of road would be affected at a
cost of $3.9 million (NSW - $2.5 million; WA - $975,000; NT - $430,000).
The alternative approach is to allow driving over continuous double lines to enter and
exit a road. This would have a significant impact in those jurisdictions which prohibit this
practice, requiring the installation of some form of median or signs. It is estimated that
approximately 410 kilometres of road would be affected at a cost of some $39 million
(Vic - $14 million; Qld - $15.5 million; SA - $8.3 million; Tas - $I.4 million; ACT -
$193,000).
18                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



No accident data are available to enable analysis of the relative safety merits of either
approach.
Based on a comparison of costs, it would be ten times more expensive to provide for
the crossing of double lines than the requirement as proposed.

6.8.   Riding Alongside More than One Rider in a Lane

Proposal
It is proposed to allow motorcycles and bicycles to ride not more than two abreast on
roads (but this does not prevent a rider overtaking other riders).

Impact
The proposal reflects existing provisions in all States and Territories except Tasmania
and the Northern Territory, which only allow riding in single file and South Australia
(which currently does not allow motorcyclists to travel two abreast).

Considerations
The alternative to the proposal is to restrict riding to single file. This would require a
change in most jurisdictions and is not supported by them. Tasmania has indicated its
support for allowing bicycles to ride two abreast and is currently pursuing an
amendment to its current regulations.
The Northern Territory believes that riding in single file is safer and expressed concerns
about the effect of two abreast riding on traffic flows. There are no data on the relative
crash risks of the two alternatives. Therefore, no firm conclusions on the relative safety
merits of either style of riding can be drawn. Intuitively, cyclists riding two abreast are
more likely to be seen by approaching motorists, as the area of a traffic lane that they
occupy is larger, allowing motorists enough time to react to avoid a collision.
Alternatively, riders riding two abreast, who are thus occupying a greater area of traffic
lane, are more vulnerable to motorists who are unable to reduce speed to avoid a
collision or overtake or who have insufficient room. This is particularly the case where
there are a number of vertical or horizontal curves. It could also be argued that
motorists are less likely to endanger cyclists by attempting to “squeeze” past cyclists
two abreast than cyclists in a single file.
Although it could be argued that two abreast riding might cause traffic delays, especially
in peak times where overtaking is more difficult, there are no data which clarifies this
point. Public comment was generally supportive of two abreast riding.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      19




6.9.     No Stopping Signs and No Parking Signs and Road Markings

Proposal
It is proposed that:
   drivers may not stop where there are signs which indicate stopping is not allowed;
    and
   where there are signs which indicate parking is not allowed, drivers may only stop to
    pick up or set down passengers or goods provided they do not leave the vehicle
    unattended and they do not remain for more than 5 minutes.

Impact

Two Tier Parking
All States and Territories except New South Wales have similar rules, although “No
Standing” signs are often used instead of “No Stopping” signs. New South Wales uses
a three tier system involving prohibition on stopping, standing and parking; it would incur
significant costs in the replacement of signs, along with other jurisdictions which use the
“No Standing” signs. The proposal is designed to simplify the understanding of the
regulations particularly in the change from using “standing” to “stopping”.

Time limits
Currently Victoria allow drivers to stop for a maximum of 15 minutes in a no parking
area. New South Wales, Queensland and the Northern Territory only allow stopping
while actually engaged in picking up or setting down passengers and goods. Tasmania
allow drivers to stop for so long as is reasonably necessary to set down or take up
passengers and goods. South Australia and Western Australia only allow stopping for
immediate picking up of passengers and goods. The Australian Capital Territory does
not allow a driver to exit the vehicle.

Considerations

Two Tier Parking
Except in New South Wales, no significant costs beyond normal maintenance would be
incurred.
New South Wales has approximately 600,000 “No Standing” signs, 75% of which would
need to be converted to “No Parking” signs at a cost per sign of $10 (if a sticker is used)
or $50 (if a plate is replaced). The proposed change - if undertaken over a short period -
would cost between $4.5 and $22.5 million. The installation of “No Stopping” instead of
the remaining “No Standing” signs would cost between $1.5 million and $7.5 million
depending on which approach was used.
20                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



The implementation of the two tier system in New South Wales would thus cost
between $6 million and $30 million. However, other strategies may be available to
reduce these costs (such allowing New South Wales to have a substantial transitional
period for implementation). Should this occur, the costs would be significantly reduced
as the work would be undertaken as part of routine maintenance.

Time limits
Although Victoria currently allows stopping in a no parking area for 15 minutes it is not
thought that this is readily understood by drivers (similar arguments apply to other
jurisdictional practice). Victoria, however, indicated concern regarding the reduction in
the time limit from 15 minutes to anything below 5 minutes.
Other jurisdictions, most notably New South Wales, argued that the introduction of 5
minute permissive parking (as opposed to 2 minutes) in all “No Parking” areas will
create severe traffic congestion and will lead to jurisdictions having tor review kerbside
impositions to determine whether “No Parking” should be replaced with “No Stopping” in
many areas. It argued that the concept of “No Parking” was to have a regime between
absolutely “No Stopping” and timed parking (ie. “stop and go” area to drop people off).
New South Wales has voiced concern with the double effect of a change from three to
two tier parking (the singular most expensive item in the road rules) and the adoption of
5 minutes for the maximum allowable time for stopping in a no parking area.
It should however be noted that current traffic engineering practice is to use parking
signs with time limits to indicate where parking is permitted rather than use prohibitive
parking signs. These are often used for time periods of 5 minutes or above.

6.10. Bicycles on Footpaths

Proposal
It is proposed that children under 12 be allowed to ride on footpaths except where
prohibited by signs. Rules relating to other riders will be covered by jurisdictional law.

Impact
Queensland, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory currently allow
cycling on foothpaths. All other States prohibit footpath cycling. No jurisdiction currently
restricts foothpath cycling to an age group. For Queensland, the Northern Territory and
the Australian Capital Territory to maintain their current law they would have to
introduce a local law. They are expected to do so.
The proposal would require jurisdictions to prohibit the riding of bicycles in specific
areas where it was inappropriate or likely to result in greater pedestrian/cyclist
interaction. This could be done by signs.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      21




Considerations
The proposal has attracted much comment especially during public comment where the
proposal was to permit all cyclists to travel on the footpath except where excluded.
Alternatives considered have included:
   prohibition of footpath cycling;
   permitting everyone to ride;
   adoption of footpath cycling but with;
     prohibition in all business areas or within 10 metres of a business; and
     imposition of speed limits on footpath riding.
In those jurisdictions where riding on the footpath is prohibited, a significant proportion
of cyclists already do so (for example around 35% in Victoria). Thus, cyclists already
use the footpath when they believe it is safer and are unlikely to change this pattern of
behaviour.
Concerns have been expressed that permitting all riders to travel on the footpath would
lead to a widespread increase in the number of cyclists using footpaths. This could
increase pedestrian/cyclist interaction with potential for conflict and reduced pedestrian
safety. Senior citizens in particular perceive that they would be exposed to greater risk.
However, evidence suggests that the level of footpath cycling is unlikely to change from
that which occurs now, albeit illegally. It would be important to allay such fears with
adequate information and awareness programs.
From the cyclists perspective, riding on a footpath is comparatively safer than riding on
roads. It has been estimated (based on Victorian data) that the accident risk of a cyclist
on the road is 2.6 times higher than cycling on footpaths.
The recommended proposal would require jurisdictions to prohibit the riding of bicycles
in specific areas where it was inappropriate, or likely to result in greater
pedestrian/cyclist interaction, this being done by signs. Estimates of the cost of doing so
are unavailable. Arguably it may be more cost effective to allow jurisdictions to prohibit
footpath cycling by gazettal, but there are significant concerns regarding the ability of
cyclists to realise they are in a gazetted area.
Enforcement of a prohibition of footpath cycling has been problematic which is reflected
in the amount of footpath cycling that occurs in those jurisdictions where it is currently
prohibited. So long as footpath cycling remains unlawful it is not possible to educate
cyclists on safe practices. By providing for footpath cycling in the Australian Road
Rules, it is only recognising what already occurs and allows obligations to be placed on
cyclists to obey when riding on the footpath. This is of benefit for enforcement
purposes but also just as importantly for educational purposes of cyclists responsibilities
(eg. give way etc).
22                                                 Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



On balance, available data suggests that a provision for cycling on footpaths will not
have an adverse safety impact. As a result of public concern, it has been decided to
only permit footpath cycling for children under the age of 12 years, but to permit each
State and Territory to make its own laws for other age groups (further analysis is
contained in Appendix E).

6.11. Wearing Seatbelts and Child Restraints - Persons under Sixteen
      Years Old

Proposal
It is proposed that a driver must not drive a vehicle unless:
    each passenger under 1 year of age is restrained in a suitable child restraint; and
    each passenger at least 1 year old but under 16 years is restrained in a suitable
     child restraint or seatbelt if available.
There are exemptions for which provision is made.

Impact
There is variation among the jurisdictions as to the maximum age at which drivers
should be responsible for passengers. This ranges from under 10 in Queensland to
under 18 in Victoria, with 14 and 16 applying in other States and Territories. The
Northern Territory requires a driver to ensure that all passengers comply with restraint
requirements. In all jurisdictions except the Northern Territory and Tasmania, children
under 1 year of age are required to be restrained if there is an anchorage point in the
vehicle. Tasmania has indicated that it is pursuing an amendment to its regulations to
require children under 1 year to be restrained.

Considerations
Queensland supports more stringent requirements than proposed (all children under the
age of 1 must be in an approved infant restraint, and all children under the age of 10
must be restrained in a suitable child restraint or seatbelt, without exemptions as to the
availability of restraints/seatbelts or other considerations).
A range of alternative approaches have therefore been considered in developing the
proposed requirement. On the basis that all children under 1 year of age are to be
restrained (reflecting the predominant Australian position) the alternatives include:
    children between 1 and 16 to be restrained if a restraint is available, or the more
     stringent requirement of being restrained per se (ie. only travelling if approved
     restraint is available and used); and
    children aged 1 to 10 to be restrained, and those aged 10 but under 16 to restrained
     if a restraint is available.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      23



Data from FORS (for the years 1990/92/94) indicates that around 290 children under 16
years of age who were killed or injured in an accident were unrestrained. This is some
25% of children killed during the period. Compared with children who are restrained,
those unrestrained are more likely to be seriously injured (62% of unrestrained children
compared with 53% of children who are restrained). This supports the case for making
child restraint laws more stringent than is generally reflected in present requirements.
An in-depth study of car crashes in which child occupants were injured (Henderson
1994) confirmed the effectiveness of child restraints and seatbelts in protecting children.
The vast majority of children in the study who were restrained in child restraints suffered
only minor injury. Many survived very high-speed crashes without injury to the neck or
other parts. A far higher proportion of those unrestrained were seriously injured.
The proposed rule allows jurisdictions to provide additional requirements enabling
Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory to maintain current higher standards.
Although available data suggests a more stringent standard may be warranted, it is
considered that a more detailed study should be undertaken prior to any significant
changes being introduced. This is likely to be done as part of the Road Rules
Maintenance Program.

6.12. Riding of Wheeled Recreational Devices and Wheeled Toys

Proposal
It is proposed that the use of wheeled recreational devices (such as scooters,
skateboards, in-line skates, roller skates) and wheeled toys be prohibited on roads with
a centre line or dividing strip and where otherwise prohibited.

Impact
Regulations would need to be introduced in Victoria, Queensland, the Northern Territory
and the Australian Capital Territory which do not prohibit their use. Some amendments
would be required to existing provisions in other jurisdictions, such as Tasmania, which
bans their use unless they are used as part of a trial scheme. Tasmania, however, has
indicated its support for providing for the legal use of such devices. South Australia has
proposed that riders of wheeled devices be required to wear safety helmets.
24                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Considerations
Various alternatives have been considered included banning the use of wheeled
devices on roads and footpaths at night, prohibiting their use on all roads and a range
of other possible restrictions. Wheeled devices are generally smaller than bicycles
making them less conspicuous. Users of these devices have less protection than other
road users and generally travel more slowly, although some are capable of high speed
(eg. in-line skates and skateboards). While no exposure data are available, there are
significant risks associated with the use of wheeled devices on roads and therefore it
has been determined to only allow their use on local roads but to permit jurisdictions to
provide further prohibition where necessary.

6.13. Use of Hand Held Mobile Phones

Proposal
It is proposed that the driver of a vehicle must not use a hand held mobile phone while
the vehicle is moving, or is stationary but not parked. An exemption power is included.

Impact
Currently the use of hand held mobile phones is banned only in New South Wales,
Victoria and Tasmania. All other jurisdictions allow their use while driving but provisions
relating to drivers having full control over the vehicle can be used where a driver’s
control is adversely affected.

Considerations
The available data is inconclusive as to whether the use of hand held mobile phones
while driving increases accident risk. They can in certain circumstances be a distraction
for the driver, for example, during an intense conversation, and may diminish the
degree of concentration given to the traffic task (eg observance of other road users).
There is general support from States and Territories for a prohibition on their use as
proposed. Due to a recent cabinet decision in Western Australia, an exemption has
been included to allow a jurisdiction to permit their use (further analysis is contained in
Appendix F).

6.14. Exemptions for the Driver of a Tow Truck

Proposal
It is proposed that tow truck drivers be exempted from some rules while manoeuvering
at the scene of an accident, attending a disabled vehicle or a vehicle that is authorised
to be towed away. Flashing lights must be used when appropriate.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                   25




Impact
The rule is not supported by New South Wales Police, Victoria Police and Queensland
Police on the basis that tow truck drivers are directed in their activities at accident
scenes by the presence of Police, thereby not requiring special exemptions. This,
however, does not occur in all cases.

Considerations
In many instances tow truck drivers presently manoeuvre contrary to the rules of the
road at accident scenes. In effect, the proposed rule reflects the reality of removing
vehicles from the road following an accident and that police are not always at the scene
of an accident or may not arrive until some time after the accident, by which time the
accident could have been cleared.

6.15. Securing a vehicle

Proposal
The Australian Road Rules propose to require a driver to secure a vehicle (turn off the
engine, put the brake on, remove the key and lock the door) unless a law of the
jurisdiction exempts a driver from all or part of the requirements.

Impact
Current practice varies with Queensland, Western Australia and Victoria having similar
requirements except they do not require the doors to be locked. Tasmania require the
brake to be applied and the engine not to be running. The Australian Capital Territory
require drivers to take due precaution in securing a vehicle. South Australia has no
obligations.

Considerations
A number of jurisdictions have indicated that this rule is important in terms of road
safety as it reduces the opportunity for vehicles to be stolen.
South Australia has argued that the requirement to lock a vehicle potentially results in
the victim of a crime (ie. a person whose vehicle is stolen) being charged with an
offence if the keys are in the vehicle and the doors are unlocked.
Tasmania’s preferred approach was to remove the parts of the rule relating to removing
the key and locking the doors. South Australia argued for the ability to exempt drivers
from all, or part of the rule. The exemption has been included.
The issue has been referred to Ministers for consideration at the request of two
jurisdictions, as it represents a policy change post discussion by Transport Agency
Chief Executives.
26                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




6.16. Stopping on a Crest or a Curve

Proposal
The Australian Road Rules propose to prohibit stopping near a crest or a curve outside
a built-up area unless:
    road signs permit it; or
    the vehicle is visible for 100 metres for approaching drivers.

Impact
Currently New South Wales, Queensland and Tasmania permit stopping near a crest or
a curve if the vehicle is visible for at least 50 metres. Western Australia require a
distance of 150 metres. Victoria and the Northern Territory require a sight distance of
100 metres. South Australia prohibit stopping in a hazardous position.
Victoria, however, suggested that jurisdictions should provide a more definite indication
to drivers of a prohibition on stopping, such as no stopping signs or yellow edge lines,
rather than requiring drivers to judge the distance of 100 metres.

Considerations
This issue was discussed at a meeting of Transport Agency Chief Executives in
October 1998. The alternative proposal of Victoria is likely to be both cost prohibitive
(as it would require every crest or curve outside of a built-up area where a State or
Territory considered it dangerous to park to either have “no stopping” signs installed or
edge lines marked) and impractical (as many roads are unmade).
In general, the Rules provide for a jurisdiction to use signs where they wish to permit
parking and to use linemarkings and signs to prohibit parking. A jurisdiction could
effectively overcome its concern regarding judging distance by using linemarkings in all
instances where it wishes to prohibit stopping and road signs in all areas where it
wishes to permit parking.

6.17. Impact of the draft Australian Road Rules on Competition
The draft Australian Road Rules are not expected to restrict competition. The Rules
largely replicate the existing road rules in each State and Territory but remove most of
the anomalies.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                  27




7. THE COST OF INTRODUCING AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES

7.1.     Overview
Given the comprehensive coverage of the Australian Road Rules, with consequent
changes in State and Territory requirements, various costs will be incurred in their
implementation. The main categories where costs are identifiable are:
   replacement or removal of road signs, and modification of line markings - which may
    be implemented over several years;
   changes required in Transport Authority and Police administrative and enforcement
    systems (documentation, computer applications, Police training);
   production of amended driver/road user materials and publications, and road safety
    education resources; and
   development and implementation of public education campaigns.
The total estimated costs involved in adopting the Rules are summarised below.

7.2.     Total Costs of Implementation

          New South Wales                             24,381,000 (Minimum)
                                                      50,083,000 (Maximum)
          Victoria                                         4,950,000*
          Queensland                                        5,381,000
          Western Australia                                 9,328,000
          South Australia                                   5,200,000
          Tasmania                                           954,000
          Northern Territory                                 525,000
          ACT                                              2,480,000*
          Total                                       53,199,000 (Minimum)
                                                      78,901,000 (Maximum)
           * Excludes Police costs - not estimated.

These costs fall to road authorities and police who obtain funding through consolidated
revenue and road charges. The extent to which any of these costs will be passed on to
consumers is unknown. A more detailed breakdown of the main cost components within
each jurisdiction is provided in Appendix G.
28                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




7.3.   Analysis of Cost Components

New South Wales
The major costs are in the area of traffic engineering, predominantly for changes
associated with adoption of a two tier parking regime, and requirements in relation to
double lines. The actual level of traffic engineering costs will depend greatly on the
implementation strategy and timeframes adopted, ranging from a minimum estimate of
some $10 million to a maximum of $35 million. The costs could be significantly reduced
by the adoption of an extended transitional period for implementation (eg. seven years)
Other significant costs include publicity ($6 million), RTA and Police system changes
($5.8 million), training of personnel ($1.9 million), as well as production of driver
licensing and road safety materials.
Although the impact can not be quantified, there is likely to be an increase in court costs
arising from offenders testing the new laws, with no case law precedents in the early
stages.

Victoria
The estimated cost of changes in Victorian signs and line markings is $2.7 million. This
relates predominantly to changes in requirements for crossing continuous single lines,
stopping and parking provisions, U-turns at signalised intersections, bicycles on
footpaths and the “zip” merge rule.
Publicity costs of the order of $1.75 million are envisaged, which could be reduced if
some campaigns were undertaken on a national basis. Licence testing material and
handbooks would require amendment.
(Costs related to training of personnel and system changes have not been estimated).

Queensland
The major component of costs relates to changes to infrastructure costs ($2.8 million).
Public education and communication, which include a general public campaign, a
driver’s guide, driver trainer education, personnel training and licence testing, account
for $2,070,000. Costs arising from changes to enforcement practice are $463,000.
Systems changes account for $48,000.

Western Australia
Of the total estimated cost of $9.3 million, the major component is expenditure of some
$6.9 million on road markings and signage.
An amount of $1.5 million is estimated for the conduct of a communication and publicity
strategy. Other significant costs include licensing and Police system changes, road
safety education materials, and legislative and legal services.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                     29




South Australia
The total estimated cost is $5.2 million. Of this amount, traffic engineering costs are
estimated at $2.2 million, particularly for changes in single continuous line
requirements, roundabout signs and keep left unless overtaking provisions.
Public education activities may cost in the order of $2.8 million. In South Australia, the
Rules are seen as providing an excellent opportunity to educate road users on the
applicable requirements, with the impetus provided by the implementation of new
provisions.
Police education and training costs are estimated at $200,000.
Engineering costs can be significantly reduced through a lengthy implementation
period.

Tasmania
The major component of the total estimated cost of $954,000 comprises changes to
signs and road markings of $273,000, particularly to implement new parking provisions.
Other costs include education and training ($255,000), publicity and advertising
($169,000), and licensing and enforcement system changes ($130,000).

Australian Capital Territory
Costs are estimated at $2.5 million, the major component being $1.8 million for signs
and road markings, particularly for parking signs, roundabouts and other traffic signs.
Other costs include system changes ($300,000), publicity ($250,000), and legal costs of
modifying ACT laws.
(Costs relating to Police have not been estimated).

Northern Territory
Of the total estimated cost of $525,000, the major components are Police and licensing
system requirements ($305,000), publicity and education ($120,000) and traffic
engineering costs of $100,000.
30                                                   Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




8. THE BENEFITS OF INTRODUCING AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
The benefits of uniform national road laws will be achieved in the following areas:
    a contribution to the reduction in crashes and resultant casualties;
    reduction in driver misunderstanding and conflict situations;
    savings over time in administrative costs such as the production of printed road
     rules and education materials;
    the potential to undertake a co-ordinated promotion and awareness campaign,
     supported by enforcement as appropriate; and
    reduction in the time and effort required of drivers in familiarisation with other State
     and Territory requirements.

8.1.    Reduction in Crashes and Injuries
The adoption of Australian Road Rules can be expected to enhance road safety. This
arises from the clarification of existing anomalies and the selection of simplified rules
based on national experience. Benefits will accrue to various States and Territories to a
greater or lesser degree, given that each jurisdiction will have a different mix of required
changes. It must be noted, however, that from a national perspective, the total
“package” is likely to be of greater value than any of its individual parts and should be
assessed in this light.
There is no existing database identifying the impact of each rule change, which would
enable the clear quantification of the likely benefits. This makes precise assessment
impossible. However, it is estimated that one fatal crash costs the community in excess
of $800,000. If only one fatal crash could be avoided each year in each State and
Territory, this would represent an annual saving of $6.4 million in the first year - with a
reduction of 80 fatal crashes over 10 years, equivalent to a saving of $49 million in fatal
accident costs over 10 years in net present value terms.
Further savings could accrue from a reduction in serious injury crashes. The cost per
serious crash is around $124,000. It is estimated (Bureau of Transport and
Communications Economics 1993) that for each fatal crash, there are some 10 serious
injury crashes. If the effect of the change in driver behaviour was to save one fatal
accident per State or Territory per annum then a similar outcome could be expected for
serious injury crashes. Assuming ten (10) serious injury crashes per State or Territory
per annum are avoided then this would result in an annual saving of $9.9 million - with a
reduction of 800 serious injury crashes over 10 years, equivalent to a saving of
$76 million in net present value terms in serious injury accident costs.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        31



In the absence of definitive data on the road safety impact in each jurisdiction of major
proposed changes, it is clearly not possible to be specific about the benefits in
quantitative terms. However, road crashes in total are estimated to cost $6,000 million
per annum. The cost of introducing the new regulations will be largely “once only” initial
implementation costs, but with some continuing into other years. The costs of
implementation (minimum $53 million or maximum $79 million) are equivalent to a
reduction of 0.9% and 1.3% of road trauma costs respectively (equivalent to 0.09% and
0.13% per annum over a ten year period).

8.2.     Reduction in Driver Misunderstandings and Conflicts
Uniform road laws expressed in a more simplified form create an opportunity for re-
educating motorists as to their obligations in using the road system more efficiently.
Given the fact that many road rules are poorly understood, there are likely to be benefits
in terms of reduction in conflict and uncertainty. This is especially relevant to the several
hundred thousand new licence holders coming onto the roads each year, as well as
those whose familiarity with the rules has reduced.

8.3.     Savings in Administration Costs and Education Materials
In time, a reduction in the costs of administration can be expected with the publication
of a set of road rules applicable in all jurisdictions. For example, the unit cost of printed
information and education material could be expected to decline, arising from the
economies of scale.
In particular, greater collaboration in the approach to information and education
programs involving all States and Territories would be made feasible, with benefits in
terms of wider audience reach and impact.

8.4.     Co-ordinated Promotion and Awareness Campaign
The introduction of uniform road rules provides a unique opportunity to undertake a co-
ordinated campaign in all States and Territories to re-focus road users’ awareness of
their obligations in such important areas as giving way, driving in lanes, U-turns,
observance of road signs and markings and compliance with road traffic law generally.
This can be supported by targeted enforcement activity, where appropriate, as part of or
following an awareness campaign. Such a campaign, along with other State and
Territory road safety programs, could form a key element of national road safety
activities to be undertaken during the year 2000.
Even if only a 1% reduction in fatal and serious injury crashes resulted from a co-
ordinated promotion and enforcement campaign, this would represent around 17 fatal
crashes and 170 serious injury crashes prevented, equivalent to a saving of $14 million
and $21 million respectively.
32                                                   Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




8.5.    Driver Familiarisation with Requirements
The need for drivers travelling or moving interstate to become familiar with different
road rules will be largely eliminated. This will be reflected in a better adaptation to the
demands of driving in a new environment, resulting in less stress and conflict.
It will also result in a reduction in the time and effort required of road authorities in
responding to queries for clarification of different State and Territory requirements.

9. SUMMARY JUSTIFICATION
The Australian Road Rules are the outcome of extensive deliberation between State
and Territory representatives over several years and take account of the input of many
organisations and individuals during their initial development. Their principal objectives
are to:
    introduce uniform regulations throughout Australia for all road users;
    enhance mobility and safety by updating and simplifying traffic regulations; and
    reduce cost and achieve administrative efficiency on a national basis.
The Rules cannot be implemented without some cost, arising from the inevitability of
changes in the current requirements in individual jurisdictions. These costs are
estimated to total $48 million as a minimum, and $74 million as a maximum (not
including Queensland), comprising initial (one-off) and some longer term costs.
Balanced against these cost are the benefits to the nation as a whole. These will accrue
from the following outcomes:
    achievement of a goal first envisaged over fifty years ago and subsequently
     promoted by various Federal and State co-ordinating bodies;
    the opportunity arising from the promulgation of uniform regulations to re-focus road
     user awareness of obligations in the safe and efficient use of the road system;
    a reduction in the burden of those road users travelling interstate or relocating their
     State of residence by having to comply with only one set of requirements;
    reduction in the difficulty experienced by international visitors who travel interstate
     by road, in a context where driving in strange surroundings is already inherently
     more risky;
    achievement of savings in the longer term of the costs associated with printing of
     road rules, information and education material; and
    the potential to mount a co-ordinated promotion and enforcement campaign in
     conjunction with the introduction of uniform rules.
From a national perspective, the Australian Road Rules should be seen as a “package”
which is of greater value than any of its individual parts. They form a part of Australia’s
efforts throughout the 1990s in particular to achieve one of the lowest road toll records
in the world.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                   33



There are “intangible” benefits associated with the proposed Australian Road Rules
which thus can not be readily expressed in monetary terms. For example, the year 2000
is inextricably associated with the staging of the Sydney Olympics, which will see
significant numbers of international visitors come to Australia. A common set of road
rules would provide a strong symbol of national integration as these visitors move from
State to State.

10.        IMPLEMENTATION
If approved, it is expected that the implementation of the Australian Road Rules will be
commenced in all jurisdictions by 1 December 1999. New South Wales and
Queensland will commence implementation in September and July 1999 respectively.
34                                                Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



REFERENCES
ABS, Survey of Motor Vehicle Use, 30 September 1995, Australian Bureau of Statistics
Cataloque No. 9202.0, 1995.
ABS, Motor Vehicles in Australia, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Cataloque No. 9311.0,
1997.
ABS, Tourism, in Year Book Australia 1998, Australian Bureau of Statistics, 1998.
Bureau of Transport and Communications Economics, Costs of Road Crashes in
Australia - 1993, Information Sheet 4, 1993.
Cairney P.T., Understanding Traffic Control Devices, in Australian Road Research
Board Special Report No. 44, ARRB, 1989.
Federal Office of Road Safety, The National Road Safety Strategy, FORS, Department
of Transport and Communication.
Federal Office of Road Safety, Driving in Unfamiliar Surroundings - Part 1: International
Drivers, Monograph 3, 1995, FORS, Department of Transport and Communication.
Federal Office of Road Safety, Driving in Unfamiliar Surroundings - Part 2: Driving
Interstate, Monograph 4, 1996, FORS, Department of Transport and Communication.
Henderson M., Children in Car Crashes: An In-depth Study of Car Crashes in which
Child Occupants were Injured, Child Accident Prevention Foundation NSW Division,
Parramatta NSW, 1994.
RACV, Road Rules Quiz, Royalauto, May 1996, Royal Automobile Club of Victoria.
Roads and Traffic Authority, 50 km/h Urban Speed Limit Trial: Evaluation Report, RTA,
June 1998.
     APPENDIX A




  SUMMARY OF SCOPE
AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                  A1




                   PART                                         SCOPE/PURPOSE
Part 1.      Introductory.                           General Comments.
Part 2.      Application of the                      Explanation of Meanings - Road, Road
             Australian Road                         Users, Vehicles.
             Rules.
Part 3.      Speed-Limits.                           To Define Obligations in Relation to Speed-
                                                     Limits, Speed Signs, Speed-Limited Areas.
Part 4.      Making Turns.                           To Regulate Turning Movements (Left, Right,
                                                     Hook, U-turns).
Part 5.      Change of Direction                     To Regulate Change of Direction Signals,
             and Stop Signals.                       Stop Signals.
Part 6.      Traffic Lights and                      To Regulate Stopping and Proceeding at
             Twin Red Lights.                        Traffic Signals, Giving Way when Turning.
Part 7.      Giving Way.                             To Regulate Giving Way at Stop/Give Way
                                                     Signs and Lines, Unsigned Intersections,
                                                     Road Related Areas, Keeping Clear,
                                                     Crossings and Shared Zones.
Part 8.      Traffic Signs and                       To Regulate Behaviour at Traffic Signs and
             Road Markings.                          Markings, Emergency Lanes, Hand Held
                                                     Signs, Signs for Large Vehicles.
Part 9.      Roundabouts.                            To Regulate Behaviour at Roundabouts
                                                     (Entering, Direction Signals, Giving Way).
Part 10. Level Crossings.                            To Regulate Stopping and Giving Way,
                                                     Entering and Leaving.
Part 11. Keeping Left,                               To Prohibit Obstruction, Keeping Distance,
         Overtaking and                              Entering Blocked Intersection.
         Other Driving
         Rules.                                      To Regulate Lane Behaviour, Oncoming
                                                     Vehicles, Dividing Lines, Median Strips,
                                                     Painted Islands.
                                                     To Regulate Overtaking Behaviour (Left and
                                                     Right), Safe Distance, Not Increasing Speed.
                                                     To Regulate Driving in Lanes (Broken and
                                                     Unbroken Lines), Giving Way when Moving,
                                                     Overhead Lane Controls, Particular Lanes
                                                     (Bicycle, Bus, Tram, Transit, Truck).
                                                     To Regulate Passing of Trams, Safety Zones,
                                                     Giving Way to Pedestrians.
A2                                         Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Part 12. Restrictions on        To Regulate Parking and Stopping in relation
         Stopping and           to No Stopping/Parking Signs, Road
         Parking.               Markings, Intersections and Crossings,
                                Clearways, Emergency Lanes, Freeeways,
                                Loading/Other Zones, Other Restricted
                                Areas,     Permissive    Parking     Signs,
                                Parallel/Angle Parking.
Part 13. Lights and Warning     To Regulate the Use of Lights under Various
         Devices.               Conditions (Night, Weather, Towing), High
                                Beam, Warning Lights, Animal Drawn
                                Vehicles, Horns and Radar Detectors,
                                Warning Triangles.
Part 14. Rules for              To Regulate Pedestrian Behaviour in relation
         Pedestrians.           to Signs, Lights, Trams, Crossings, Along a
                                Road, Paths/Footpaths, Wheeled Toys.
Part 15. Additional Rules for   To Regulate Bicycle Riding Behaviour in
         Bicycle Riders.        relation to Lanes, Giving Way from a
                                Footpath, Footpaths, Wearing of Helmets,
                                Equipment, Bicycle Crossing Lights.
Part 16. Rules for Persons      To Regulate the Wearing of Seatbelts, Being
         Travelling in or on    in a Vehicle, Opening Doors, Wearing
         Vehicles.              Motorcycle Helmets, Driver’s Control.
Part 17. Additional Rules for   To Regulate Stopping at T Lights, B Lights.
         Drivers of Trams
         and Public Buses.
Part 18. Miscellaneous          To Make Provisions for Driver Reporting of
         Road Rules.            Crashes, Driving on Paths/Nature Strip, Noise
                                or Smoke, Removing Road Obstacles,
                                Towing of Vehicles, Loads, Reversing, Proper
                                Control, Person on a Trailer, TV
                                Receivers/VDU, Mobile Phones, Being in
                                Charge/Riding Animals, Obeying Directions.
Part 19. Exemptions.            To Make Exemptions for Police Vehicles,
                                Emergency Vehicles, Trams, Road Workers,
                                Oversize Vehicles, Tow Trucks, Postal
                                Vehicles.
Part 20. Traffic Control        To Clarify the Use of Diagrams in the Rules,
         Devices and Traffic    Legal Effect of Devices, Substantial
         Related Items.         Compliance of Devices with the Rules, Words
                                on Devices, Limited Effect of Some Devices,
                                Application of Devices to Roads/Areas,
                                Application to Persons.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                  A3




Part 21. General.                                    To Clarify the Meaning of Certain References
                                                     in the Rules, Schedule of Abbreviations,
                                                     Standard Traffic Signs, Other Permitted
                                                     Signs, Traffic Related Items, Dictionary.
       APPENDIX B




SUMMARY OF PUBLIC COMMENT
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                   B1




1. CONSULTATION
In late 1994 a version of the Australian Road Rules was released for public comment
along with a forty page preliminary evaluation of the proposed rules. Some 4,000 copies
were distributed. Submissions were received from 460 organisations and individuals.
The submissions were generally supportive of the initiative and the concept of National
Road Rules and the use of plain English.
A considerable number of alternative policy proposals was received and clarification
was sought on many issues.
In December 1995 a revised draft of the Australian Road Rules was circulated to
Transport Agency Chief Executives for comment along with a draft Regulatory Impact
Statement (RIS). The draft rules and draft RIS were also sent to those organisations or
individuals who provided substantial submissions during the public comment period and
to other interested organisations or individuals on request.
Submissions were received from all State and Territory Authorities, as well as a number
of road user groups, councils, Parliamentary Counsels and individuals.
To address the specific concerns of jurisdictions, a meeting was held with
representatives of government organisations in February 1996.
A revised draft was circulated to Transport Agency Chief Executives and other
interested parties in November 1996. This draft was extensively discussed at a number
of meetings and teleconferences throughout 1997.
At the end of 1997, work commenced on re-drafting the Australian Road Rules in a co-
operative and consultative venture between the NRTC, the Office of Legislative
Drafting, road authorities and police. The Office of Legislative Drafting also consulted
State and Territory Parliamentary Counsel. This process resulted in a draft being
circulated to Transport Agency Chief Executives in October which was subsequently
discussed by them at a meeting. From that meeting and discussions which followed, six
items were identified for a separate vote.
The comments on issues which attracted many submissions during the public comment
period are summarised in Section C.2. Those issues upon which substantial comments
were received from Transport Agency Chief Executives are summarised in Section C.3.
B2                                                 Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




2. PUBLIC COMMENT

2.1.   Giving Way
Sixty-six submissions were received on the lack of a rule requiring vehicles to give way
to pedestrians at an intersection without signs or traffic lights. Forty-four opposed
pedestrians having to give way to turning vehicles, 16 supported the change and the
remainder expressed reservations about giving drivers the right of way over
pedestrians.
This policy has been revised to meet the concerns of those who expressed doubt about
the wisdom of requiring pedestrians to give way to vehicles and to reflect existing
practice in most States and Territories.
The 26 comments received on giving way to a public bus were divided as to whether the
proposal was sound in its current form and many suggested that it should not only apply
in built-up areas.
This policy has been limited to relatively low speed areas by restricting it to "built-up"
areas. This is considered the most readily understood general term.

2.2.   Roundabouts
The majority of comment received on giving a change of direction signal when turning in
a roundabout indicated that the policy and/or intent was not clear.
Furthermore, only 17 of 73 comments supported the rule on giving way when in a
roundabout as proposed. The great majority commented adversely on the likely
outcome of such a rule.
The roundabout rules have been developed in consultation with road authorities and
with regard to traffic engineering practice.

2.3.   Continuous Lines
Only 4 respondents supported the proposal to allow drivers to cross double lines. The
other respondents either opposed it outright or commented on the vagueness of "if it is
safe to do so".
This policy has been modified to some extent in response to comment received about
the problem of allowing drivers to cross double lines. Drivers are now prohibited from
crossing double continuous centre lines except to avoid obstructions.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                         B3




2.4.     Stopping or Parking Vehicles
Most of the comment received on rules applying to areas where you must not park
vehicles was in favour of extending the exception for bicycles to motorcycles.
Because of potential problems associated with "as of right" motorcycle parking on
footpaths or nature strips, including congestion, the rules provide for a sign permissive
approach or a local variation.
Most of the comments received on the parking of long vehicles indicated a preference
for a length restriction, either as an alternative or in lieu of the weight limit which it was
felt was too difficult to estimate. Many suggested that either 7.5 metres or 6 metres was
the preferable length.
The rule reflects comments received and allow vehicles up to and inclusive of 4.5
tonnes GVM or 7.5 metres in length to park in streets without being subject to a time
limit.

2.5.     Speed Limits
Of a total of 69 comments received on speed limits 29 were against the removal of
differential speed limits on probationary and learner drivers while 9 favoured the
abolition of differential speed limits for such drivers.
It is expected that differential speed limits will remain in driver licensing laws in the
States and Territories in which they now occur.
Eleven of the respondents favoured a 25 km/h speed restriction in "school zones."
Of the 71 comments received on specified speed limits, 26 opposed the restriction of
the upper speed limit to 100 km/h. Of the five comments received relating to de-
restriction speed signs, three wanted further explanation in the Australian Road Rules of
their meaning.
A maximum speed limit of 100 km/h will apply to vehicles with a GVM greater than 12
tonnes and to buses with a GVM greater than 5 tonnes.

2.6.     Mobile Phones and Other Communications Devices
Substantial comment was received with little support for allowing the use of mobile
phones while driving. It was difficult to distinguish between those wanting a total ban on
the use of mobile phones and those who prefer that only hand-held devices be banned.
There was extensive support from the States and Territories for the inclusion in the
Australian Road Rules of a prohibition on the use of hand-held phones while driving.
The use of hand-held mobile phones while driving will be prohibited but jurisdictions will
be able to provide exemptions to this law following the decision of the Western
Australian cabinet to permit the use of mobile phones while driving.
B4                                                Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




3. MAJOR ISSUES
The following issues attracted considerable comment during both public and TACE
consultation. They were also subject to extensive discussion at the meeting held with
representatives of government organisations in February 1996 and at the TACE
meeting in October 1998.

3.1.   Keep Left Unless Overtaking
Twenty of the 48 comments received supported the keeping as far left as practicable
rule as drafted. Some disagreed outright but others were of the view that with
supplementary rules this might work in practice.
Following public comment all States and Territories expressed support for applying a
“Keep Left Unless Overtaking” rule in a specified speed zone area or where there are
signs. All States and Territories except Queensland and South Australia suggested the
rule should apply in speed zones greater than 80 km/h. Queensland and South
Australia suggested the rule should apply where the speed limit was 80 km/h or higher.
After the release of the 1996 version of the road rules there was some concern that a
speed limit sign should not be connected to any other rule. There was widespread
support for having a “Keep Left Unless Overtaking” rule apply on all multi-lane roads but
this was thought to be so unworkable as to outweigh any concerns regarding a speed
limit sign having a multiple meaning.
The issue was discussed by TACE in October 1998 where Victoria suggested that this
rule should apply in speed zones greater than 60 km/h. There was general, but not
unanimous agreement to do so.
It is proposed that the “Keep Left Unless Overtaking” rule apply in areas where the
speed limit is greater than 60 km/h or where there are signs.

3.2.   Bicycles
All but one response received during public consultation emphasised that the rule
referring to "open businesses" is unenforceable.
This rule has been re-drawn to take account of critical comment. In particular, the rule
relating to riding within 10 metres of a business has been deleted. The Authority has
discretion to prohibit cyclists from certain areas.
The rule on giving way to pedestrians when riding on a footpath drew one of the largest
responses of all and three-quarters of all replies opposed bicyclists on the footpath
outright; a few supported permitting the young and infirm to ride on footpaths.
The issue of footpath cycling is analysed in considerable detail. Available information
supports allowing cyclists to ride on footpaths.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      B5




Support was expressed for the regulation on riding on the left of a footpath (as distinct
from the general opposition to footpath cycling).
Sixty-two per cent of replies opposed compulsory wearing of bicycle helmets for adults.
Other suggestions included that it be spelt out where the helmet must be worn.
Safety considerations and the experience of States and Territories where helmet
wearing is presently required led to its retention with jurisdictions being allowed to
provide for local exemptions.
At the meeting held with government representatives, there was general support for the
introduction of footpath cycling but it was acknowledged that there is considerable
public concern. To address public concern, TACE indicated a preference to limit “as of
right” footpath cycling to children under 12 years of age and allow each State and
Territory to cover other groups. This has been reflected in the Rules.

3.3.     Making U-Turns
The regulations relating to U-turns drew a considerable number of comments (75).
Considerable opposition was expressed to the rule as drafted, ie allowing U-turns
unless prohibited at signalised intersections; comment was also directed at the
looseness of the requirement that there be only a clear view in both directions. Concern
was expressed about the cost involved in the changes proposed that would require all
intersections to be signed with respect to U-turns. Unless there were to be a general
rule adopted banning U-turns at all but signed intersections then the costs would be
substantial for nearly all States.
Detailed consideration has been given to the extensive comment this provision
provoked. The cost-benefit analysis supports a sign permissive rule.

3.4.     Carrying and Restraining Children in Vehicles
Several organisations and States and Territories expressed concern that the child
restraint laws were less stringent than those currently applying in the States and
Territories.
The child restraint requirements have been reviewed to take into consideration some of
these concerns. It is expected that, over time, further consideration will be given to this
issue.

3.5.     Stopping on Bridges or in Tunnels
It is proposed that a vehicle must not stop or stay on a bridge or in a tunnel or a similar
structure, unless the road is at least as wide on the structure as it is on each of the
approaches regardless of the width of approaches.
B6                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Most jurisdictions support this requirement as expressed. The Northern Territory does
not, as it currently prohibits standing and parking on all such structures unless signs
permit.
The Northern Territory has commented that stopping on bridges is a road safety matter
and would not wish to see its existing provision changed. There are some locations
where it is not easy to distinguish between the road proper and where it passes over a
bridge (eg. minor structures such as culverts). The Northern Territory notes that this
would be taken into account by enforcement agencies.

3.6.   Stopping on Roads - Heavy or Long Vehicles
It is proposed that restrictions apply to the parking of vehicles that have a GVM of 4.5
tonnes or more or are at least 7.5 metres long. In a built up area the driver must not
stop for more than one hour; outside a built-up area the driver can only stop on the
shoulder of the road.
The proposal is acceptable to all jurisdictions except New South Wales where current
parking restrictions are less restrictive, and Queensland.
New South Wales has commented that its current parking restriction is far less
restrictive in that it only applies to trucks with an unladen weight of greater than 3
tonnes. The application of the proposed rule to buses, or vehicles not traditionally
covered (light vehicles towing caravans or boats) is not supported in New South Wales.
Queensland has suggested that parking regulations in regard to any combination of
vehicles longer than 7.5 metres (including buses and family sedans with a caravan or a
boat) should be left to local government; if the rule were to remain it should be limited to
heavy vehicles other than buses.

3.7.   A Note on Adoption of Australian Standards
It is proposed that Australian Standards be adopted where applicable in the Australian
Road Rules.
Queensland proposes that the relevant Australian Standard be specified in legislation
as the minimum requirement for devices such as infant and child restraints, bicycle
helmets and motorcycle helmets. It is understood that this will be entrenched as the
national standard through Administrative Guidelines. Appropriate administrative
guidelines are to be drafted for consideration by jurisdictions.

3.8.   Overtaking on the Left of Multi-Lane Roads
Victoria indicated a desire to prohibit overtaking on the left of multi-lane roads,
consistent with European practice.
While in the long term there may be some benefit in the Victorian proposal, the rule
which operated in the UK is premised on there being adherence to the “keep to the left”
rule. Currently in Australia there is not a strong culture of keeping to the left.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      B7




3.9.     Stopping on a Crest or a Curve
Victoria would prefer jurisdictions to provide a more definite indication to drivers of a
prohibition on stopping such as no stopping signs or yellow edge lines rather than
requiring drivers to judge 100 metres.
The alternative proposal of Victoria is likely to be both cost prohibitive and impractical.
Every jurisdiction would be required to sign or line mark every crest or curve where it
wished to prohibit stopping. This would include rural gravel roads.

3.10. Time Limit for No Parking Signs
Victoria currently use a 15 minute maximum stopping time for no parking signs. This
was discussed by TACE in October 1998 and it was agreed to apply a 5 minute time
limit for no parking. New South Wales argue that the introduction of a 5 minute
permissive parking in all “No Parking” areas will create severe traffic congestion and will
lead to jurisdictions having to review kerbside impositions to determine whether “No
Parking” should be replaced with “No Stopping” in many areas. This issue has been
identified for separate consideration.

3.11. Securing a Vehicle
South Australia has argued that the rule would result in the victims of a crime being
treated as a criminal if his or her vehicle is stolen due to it being made insecure. South
Australia seeks an exemption from this rule which has been included subject to
Ministerial approval.
              APPENDIX C




SUMMARY OF MAIN CHANGES IN REGULATIONS
      IN STATES AND TERRITORIES
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                       C1




Table 1: Hand-held mobile phones

                 Proposed policy                                   Current differences

 Prohibition on the use of hand-held mobile          QLD, NT, WA, SA, ACT:
 phones but allow for local variation where          No specific prohibition but drivers required to
 necessary.                                          have full control over the vehicle.




Table 2: Flags at children’s crossing

                 Proposed policy                                   Current differences

 A children’s crossing can be marked by              SA:         Requires flashing lights (doesn’t
 “children’s crossing” flags or yellow flashing                  allow flags).
 lights near red and white posts.
                                                     WA:         Not bounded by red and white
                                                                 posts.
                                                     TAS:        Children’s crossings not required to
                                                                 have red and white posts but
                                                                 school crossings are.
                                                     VIC,TAS, NSW, ACT, QLD, NT, WA:
                                                     Require flags (don’t allow flashing lights).




Table 3: Restrictions on parking heavy and long vehicles

                 Proposed policy                                    Current differences

 Prohibition on parking a vehicle with a GVM         NSW:        Prohibited from stopping for any
 over 4.5 tonnes or longer than 7.5 metres for                   length of time if unloaded mass
 more than one hour on a road in a built-up                      exceeds 3 tonnes. No prohibition on
 area.                                                           long vehicles.
 Prohibition on stopping a vehicle with a GVM        Vic, SA:    Prohibition on vehicles longer than 6
 over 4.5 tonnes or longer than 7.5 metres on                    metres. No prohibition on heavy
 the part of the road used by the main body of                   vehicles.
 moving vehicles outside a built-up area.
                                                     WA:         Prohibition on vehicles longer than 8
                                                                 metres. No prohibition on heavy
                                                                 vehicles.
                                                     NT:         No requirement for heavy vehicles.
                                                     ACT, QLD: No additional prohibitions for long or
                                                               heavy vehicles.
C2                                                         Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Table 4: Motor bike parking on footpaths

               Proposed Policy                                  Current differences

 Parking of motorbikes on footpaths prohibited   VIC:        Motorbike parking on footpaths
 unless permitted by a local law.                            allowed.




Table 5: Extended parking time for people with disabilities

               Proposed Policy                                  Current differences

 Double the specified parking time if comply     WA, NT:     No provision.
 with disabled parking permit conditions.




Table 6: Open road sped-limit

               Proposed Policy                                  Current differences

 Open road speed-limit is 100km/h unless         NT:         No open road speed-limit.
 otherwise provided.




Table 7: General urban speed-limit

               Proposed Policy                                  Current differences

 General urban speed-limit is 60km/h.            None.




Table 8: Differential speed limits for heavy vehicles

               Proposed Policy                                  Current differences

 Maximum speed-limit of 100km/h for motor        NT:         No differential speed-limit unless
 vehicles with a GVM over a 12 tonnes or a                   speed limited.
 bus with a GVM over 5 tonnes.
                                                 NSW:        90km/h maximum.
                                                 TAS:        90km/h except on specified major
                                                             highways, 80km/h for buses carrying
                                                             standing passengers.
                                                 QLD:        No maximum limit for buses.
                                                 ACT:        No differential speed-limit.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                        C3




Table 9: Speed-limit for school zones

                 Proposed Policy                                     Current differences

 No general speed-limit for school zones.              SA:         25km/h speed-limit for school zones.




Table 10: Roundabouts

                 Proposed Policy                                     Current differences

 Right change of direction signal to be given          NSW, VIC,TAS, WA, NT, SA:
 prior to entry of roundabout if travelling more       No specific requirement.
 than half-way around it.
 Left change of direction signal to be given           NSW, VIC, TAS, WA, NT, SA:
 prior to entry of roundabout if leaving it at the     No specific requirement.
 first exit (if the first exit is less than half-way
 around).
 Roundabout to be entered from right lane or           NSW, VIC,TAS, WA, NT, SA:
 line of traffic if travelling more than half-way      No specific requirement.
 around.
 Roundabout to be entered from left lane or            NSW, VIC, TAS, WA, NT, SA:
 line of traffic if travelling less than half-way      No specific requirement.
 around.
 Cyclists travelling more than half-way around         VIC, WA, NSW,TAS, NT, ACT, SA:
 a roundabout can enter from the left or right         Can only enter from the right lane or line of
 lane or line of traffic.                              traffic.
 Give way to any vehicle already in a                  None.
 roundabout and approaching from the right
 when entering the roundabout.
 Give way to a tram or bus in a tram lane              VIC:        Give way to tram at any time while
 when entering a roundabout.                                       driving in a roundabout.
                                                       QLD, WA, TAS, NT, ACT, SA:
                                                       No particular give way requirement for trams or
                                                       buses in tram lanes.
 Travel to the left of the central traffic island      NT, ACT, SA:
 unless the vehicle is too large not to drive          No specific requirement.
 onto it.
C4                                                        Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Table 11: Continuous single and double dividing lines

                Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 Double continuous dividing lines should not     NSW, WA, NT:
 be crossed.                                     Allow double continuous dividing lines to be
                                                 crossed to enter or exit the road.
 A single continuous dividing line can be        NSW, VIC: Allow single continuous lines to be
 crossed to enter or exit the road.                        crossed to overtake.




Table 12: Painted islands

                Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 Must not drive on a painted island surrounded   WA, NSW, NT:
 by continuous double lines.                     No driving on painted islands.
 Allowed to drive on a painted island            VIC, SA, WA, ACT, QLD:
 surrounded by a single continuous line to       Allow driving on painted islands.
 enter or exit the road or to enter a turning
 lane.




Table 13: Stop lines and give way lines

                Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 Stop lines and give way lines apply in the      No status given to stop lines and give way lines
 same way as a stop sign or give way sign.       on their own.




Table 14: Giving way to pedestrians at unsignalised intersections

                Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 When turning, give way to pedestrians           TAS:        No requirement to give way.
 crossing the road which the vehicle is
 entering.                                       NSW:        No requirement but general duty of
                                                             care has similar effect.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                     C5




Table 15: Giving way to public buses

                 Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Drivers to give way to a bus displaying a give      NT, TAS:     No give way requirement.
 way sign and entering the traffic stream in a
 built-up area.                                      NSW, QLD: Requirement applies to speed
                                                               zones up to 60km/h.
                                                     VIC:         Applies in all areas.
                                                     SA:          Give way signs on buses are
                                                                  advisory.
                                                     WA:          Applies to any road where speed
                                                                  limit is 70km/h or less.
                                                     ACT:         Applies to speed zones up to
                                                                  80km/h.




Table 16: U-turns at signalised and unsignalised intersections

                 Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 U-turns at signalised intersections prohibited      VIC, ACT: Allow U-turns at signalised
 unless permitted by sign.                                     intersections unless banned by sign.
                                                     SA, NSW: U-turns banned unconditionally at
                                                              signalised intersections.
 U-turns at unsignalised intersections allowed       None.
 unless prohibited by sign.




Table 17: Footpath cycling

                 Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Footpath cycling is allowed for children under      VIC, TAS, NSW, WA, SA:
 12 years of age with local law to cover other       Prohibit cycling on footpaths.
 age groups but it can be prohibited by sign.
                                                     ACT:        Prohibit footpath cycling within 10
                                                                 metres of a business.

 No speed limit for bicycles travelling on           NT:         20km/h speed limit for footpaths,
 footpaths or bicycle paths.                                     40km/h for bicycle paths.
C6                                                          Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Table 18: Riding bicycles across a road on pedestrian crossings, children’s
          crossing and marked footcrossings

               Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Riding of bicycles across a road on              NT:         No requirement.
 pedestrian crossings, children’s crossings
 and marked footcrossings is prohibited.




Table 19: Riding motor bikes and bicycles tow abreast

               Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Motor bikes and bicycles permitted to ride two   TAS, NT:    Single file only.
 abreast.




Table 20: Requirement to keep left unless overtaking

               Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Keep out of right lane on roads with a speed     WA, SA:     Applies to any multi-lane road but
 limit above 60km/h or where there are “keep                  includes a congestion exception.
 left unless overtaking” signs unless
 overtaking or turning.                           NT, ACT, TAS:
                                                  No requirement.
                                                  VIC:        Applies if indicated by sign.
                                                  QLD:        No requirement but signs indicate
                                                              preferred practice.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                       C7




Table 21: Wheeled toys on roads

                 Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Wheeled toys and wheeled recreational               NSW:        Prohibits use of wheeled toys on
 devices not be used on roads with a centre                      roads at night.
 line or dividing strip.
                                                     WA, TAS: Prohibit use on roads.
                                                     QLD, VIC, ACT, NT:
                                                     No limitations placed on the use of wheeled toys
                                                     on roads.
                                                     SA:         Also prohibits the use of wheeled
                                                                 toys at night.
 Rollerskates, in-line skates and skateboards        VIC, QLD, SA, NT, ACT, TAS:
 may be used on bicycle paths.                       Prohibited from bicycle paths.
                                                     WA, NSW: No prohibition for wheeled toys.
 Wheeled toys and wheeled recreational               None.
 devices may be used on footpaths.




Table 22: No stopping and no standing signs

                 Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 No stopping signs prohibit vehicles from            NSW:        3 tiered system of “no stopping,” “no
 stopping.                                                       standing” and “no parking.”
 No parking signs allow vehicles to stop only        VIC, WA, TAS, ACT, SA, QLD:
 to set down or pick up passenger (including         2 tiered system with “no parking” signs and
 passenger with goods) for up to 5 minutes.          either “no stopping” or “no standing” signs (if
                                                     they use both “no stopping” and “no standing”
                                                     signs they have the same meaning).
C8                                                       Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Table 23: Helmet wearing for riders of motor bikes and bicycles

               Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 All riders of motor bikes and bicycles to wear   NT:       Exempts bicycle riders 17 years old
 a helmet unless a local exemption granted.                 or over on a footpath or bicycle path.
                                                  SA:       Exempts bicycle riders on religious
                                                            grounds.
                                                  VIC:      Can exempt bicycle rider if the
                                                            person would find it extremely
                                                            difficult to comply.
                                                  WA:       Exemptions may be granted on
                                                            medical grounds (motor bike and
                                                            bicycle riders) or religious reasons
                                                            (bicycle riders only).
                                                  QLD:      Exempts bicycle riders for medical
                                                            reasons.
                                                  TAS:      Exemptions maybe granted for
                                                            bicycle riders.




Table 24: Control of a vehicle being towed

               Proposed Policy                                Current differences

 Driver of towing vehicle to have proper          NSW, WA, QLD, VIC, SA, NT, TAS, ACT:
 control of the vehicle being towed.              No specific requirement.
 Requirement for a properly licensed driver to    SA:       Requirement for a person to be in
 be in change of a towed motor vehicle unless               charge of the towed vehicle.
 the towing vehicle has proper control of the
 towed vehicle.                                   NT:       Requirement for a person holding a
                                                            licence to be in charge of the towed
                                                            vehicle.
                                                  ACT:      Requirement for a competent person
                                                            to be in charge of the towed vehicle.
                                                  TAS:      No requirement.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                                           C9




Table 25: Televisions and other visual screens in motor vehicles

                 Proposed Policy                                     Current differences

 Use of television and other similar screens          SA, NSW, ACT, QLD, TAS, WA, NT:
 prohibited unless authorised by the Authority        No requirement as to use.
 or the screen displays information necessary
 to the driving task.




Table 26: Child restraints

                 Proposed Policy                                     Current differences

 Driver not to drive if child less than 1 year old    NT:         Only required if suitable child
 is not restrained in a child restraint.                          restraint is available.
                                                      WA, VIC, NSW, TAS:
                                                      Applies only if the vehicle is required to be fitted
                                                      with a child restraint anchorage.
 Driver not to drive if a child under 16 is not       QLD:        Applies if child is younger than 10
 suitably restrained in either a child restraint or               years old.
 a sear belt.
                                                      ACT:        Applies if child is younger than 8
                                                                  years old. If aged between 8 and 14
                                                                  the child must be restrained by a
                                                                  seat belt.
                                                      WA, NSW:
                                                      Applies if child younger than 14 years old and
                                                      suitable restraint is available.
                                                      VIC:        Applies if child younger than 18 years
                                                                  old and suitable restraint is available.
                                                      TAS:        Applies if child younger than 17 years
                                                                  old and a suitable restraint is
                                                                  available.
                                                      NT:         Applies to all passengers if a suitable
                                                                  restraint is available.
                                                      SA:         Only required if suitable restraint is
                                                                  available.
 Defence if compliance unreasonable due to
 unforseen circumstances.
 A number of typical exemptions apply to the
 child restraint requirements.
C10                                                         Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




Table 27: Requirement to give particulars of an accident to other involved parties

               Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 Particulars of an accident to be given to any     None.
 person who is, or may be injured, and to the
 owner of any damaged property.




Table 28: Requirement to report accidents to police

               Proposed Policy                                   Current differences

 An accident must be reported to the police        VIC:       No reporting of property damage
 where a person is injured or killed, believes                accidents.
 someone was injured or killed, a vehicle is
 towed away (if applicable to that State or        TAS, NT, ACT:
 Territory), the driver was unable to give         Report to police if any property damage.
 particulars of the accident to involved parties   NSW:       Report if property damage of more
 of if the Authority requires such accidents to               than $500.
 be reported.
                                                   QLD:       Report if damage of more than
                                                              $2,500.
                                                   WA:        Report if damage of more than
                                                              $3,000.
                                                   SA:        Report if damage of more than $600.
         APPENDIX D




FURTHER ANALYSIS - U-TURNS AT
  SIGNALISED INTERSECTIONS
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      D1




1. INTRODUCTION
There are currently three different rules applying in the States and Territories relating to
U-turns at signalised intersections. Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory have a
sign-prohibitive law, ie U-turns are allowed at all signalised intersections unless there is
a sign prohibiting them. Queensland, Western Australia, Tasmania and the Northern
Territory have a sign-permissive law, ie U-turns at signalised intersections are prohibited
unless there is a sign which permits them. New South Wales and South Australia
prohibit U-turns at all signalised intersections.
Two options are analysed below. They are:
Option 1:          Adopt a sign-permissive approach similar to that which applies in four
                   States and Territories; or
Option 2:          Adopt a sign-prohibitive law similar to that used in Victoria and the
                   Australian Capital Territory.
The alternative of using New South Wales and South Australia’s law was rejected as
being unnecessarily restrictive.
Data were received for the analysis from all States and Territories. Where some
specific data items were incomplete assumptions were made and these are detailed in
Attachment 1 to this Appendix.

2. IMPLEMENTATION COSTS
Under a sign-permissive approach, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory would
have to remove their "No U-Turn" signs and install "U-Turn Permitted" signs at
signalised intersections. The Northern Territory which currently has "No U-Turn" signs
even though it has a sign-permissive law would have to remove these signs. New
South Wales has advised that under a sign-permissive law it would install "U-Turn
Permitted" signs at some intersections. South Australia has advised that it is unlikely to
install many signs, if any, with costs being negligible. No estimate of cost, therefore,
has been made.
As a sign-permissive law is the opposite to the rule operating in Victoria and the
Australian Capital Territory, the change in law would need to be publicised. From data
received it is estimated that a publicity campaign would cost approximately $150,000 in
Victoria and $105,000 in the Australian Capital Territory.
No publicity costs were estimated for New South Wales or South Australia because the
change to a sign-permissive law would allow for the introduction of signs permitting U-
turns which is only a minor change to the current law.
D2                                                  Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



Implementation costs of Option 1, a sign-permissive law, are shown in Table D.1. The
cost is approximately $1.4 million dollars with Victoria being most affected. There is no
affect in Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.

Table D.1:       Implementation Costs for a Sign Permissive Law ($’000)

             State/Territory           Signs                 Publicity                  Total

 Victoria                                   487                   150                        637
 Australian Capital Territory               268                   105                        373
 Northern Territory                         1                     N/A                        1
 New South Wales                            345                   N/A                        345

 Total                                      1 101                 255                        1 356

N/A: Not applicable

If a sign-prohibitive law is introduced (Option 2), Queensland, Western Australia, and
Tasmania would have to remove "U-Turn Permitted" signs and install "No U-Turn" signs
at appropriate approaches. The Northern Territory would have to remove "U-Turn"
signs and New South Wales and South Australia would have to install "No U-Turn"
signs. Costs of signs are estimated at approximately $2.9 million (see Table D.2).
All States and Territories, except Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory, would
have to publicise a change to a sign-prohibitive law. It is estimated that this would cost
approximately $781,000.
Approximately 45 per cent of the implementation costs of Option 2 will be incurred by
New South Wales. Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory are not affected.

Table D.2 Implementation Costs for a Sign Prohibitive Law ($‘000)

            State/Territory           Signs              Publicity                   Total

 New South Wales                        1 487                  173                     1 660
 Queensland                             788                    153                     941
 Western Australia                      201                    128                     329
 South Australia                        375                    120                     495
 Tasmania                               4                      105                     109
 Northern Territory                     2                      102                     104

 Total                                  2 857                  781                     3 638
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                     D3




3. MAINTENANCE COSTS
In general, traffic signs have an estimated life of at least ten years, therefore no
maintenance costs have been included in the analysis which assesses the impact of the
policy proposals over ten years. Not all signs, however, last ten years as some are
damaged in traffic accidents or through road works. The number of signs which need
replacing prior to their ten year expected life span is unknown but is not thought to be
substantial so any impact on costs will be minimal.

4. SAFETY COSTS AND BENEFITS
It would be reasonable to expect that States and Territories which have a
sign-permissive or sign-prohibitive approach would maintain the same U-turn status at
signalised intersections under the opposite approach. For example there are 200
approaches in Victoria at which U-turns are prohibited by sign. It is expected that
U-turns would be prohibited at only those 200 approaches if a sign-permissive law was
adopted (Option 1). Accident rates, for States with a sign-permissive or sign-prohibitive
law (all States and Territories except New South Wales and South Australia) therefore
will not change.
The adoption of either approach would be a departure from the current law in New
South Wales and South Australia. As a result New South Wales will allow U-turns at
some signalised intersections which is expected to lead to an increase in accidents,
where there are currently no U-turn accidents. South Australia is likely to allow U-turns
at only a few, if any, signalised intersections, the number of which cannot, at this stage,
be quantified. No estimate of the crash costs for South Australia was made.
The Northern Territory and South Australia have had to install these signs in areas
where U-turns would severely affect traffic flow or are particularly dangerous. As a
result, this has caused some confusion for local drivers.
Based on Victorian crash data it is estimated that there will be approximately six U-turn
accidents each year from the change in legislation in New South Wales (for a
discussion of the assumptions used see Attachment 1 to this Appendix).
The cost per crash was estimated from data in Andreassen (1992) which provides crash
costs by crash type using Victorian data (1987 and 1988). The average cost per U-turn
crash is $45,000 in 1991 price levels. Adjusting for the CPI an average cost estimate of
$48,800 was used in the analysis.
Annual crash costs for both Option 1 and Option 2 are estimated at approximately
$293,000. Road safety costs over ten years are about $2.2 million in net present value
terms.
D4                                                 Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




5. OTHER ISSUES
A national policy on U-turns at signalised intersections would remove confusion for
interstate drivers who may be unsure of the law in another State/Territory. A national
policy would remove the need for States and Territories to install traffic signs to offset
the behaviour of drivers from interstate or their transient population. This currently
occurs in at least the Northern Territory and South Australia which install "No U-Turn"
signs for the benefit of Victorian and Australian Capital Territory drivers even though it
has a sign-permissive approach.
Option 1 (a sign-permissive law on U-turns at signalised intersections) would be
inconsistent with proposed laws on U-turns in other locations. That is, anywhere other
than at signalised intersections, U-turns will be permitted provided there is not a sign
prohibiting them. The law would also be inconsistent with the objectives of the
Australian Road Rules, ie simplifying the regulations, and may also cause confusion
about which rule applies at specific locations. If the confusion leads to an increase in
accidents then the lower cost of the sign-permissive rule at signalised intersections may
be outweighed.

6. CONCLUSION
A summary of the quantified costs of adopting either Option 1 or Option 2 is shown in
Table D.3. Option 1 (the proposal) is the least cost option. There is insufficient
information to assess whether it would remain the least cost option if the potential
accident costs of different U-turn rules could be estimated.

Table D.3 Present Value of Costs of Uniform Law on U-Turns at Signalised
          Intersections ($’000)

         Option            Implementation          Road Safety                      Total

 1 (Sign-permissive)             1 356                  2 200                        3 556
 2 (Sign-prohibitive)            3 638                  2 200                        5 838


7. REFERENCES
Andreassen DC (1992) "Preliminary Costs for Accident Types" ARR 217 ARRB.
BTCE (1984) Assessment of the Australian Road System in 1984, Report 56, AGPS,
Canberra
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                   D1




ATTACHMENT ONE – APPENDIX D

DATA ANALYSIS
To estimate the sign costs for a sign-permissive approach the:
(i)     number of "No U-Turn" signs as a proportion of kilometres of urban roads; and
(ii)    number of "U-Turn Permitted" signs as a proportion of kilometres of urban
       roads
in Victoria were calculated. The resulting proportions of 0.01 and 0.18 were applied to
the kilometres of urban road in the Australian Capital Territory to determine the number
of "No U-Turn" signs (11) and "U-Turn" signs (146). The costs of installation and
removal, $180 and $50 supplied by Victoria were used to estimate the cost for the
Australian Capital Territory.
To estimate the sign costs of a sign-prohibitive rule for Queensland a weighted average
of the cost per kilometre of road was calculated using cost data from New South Wales,
Western Australia and South Australia. The weights used were the number of
kilometres of urban roads in New South Wales, Western Australia and South Australia.
 A cost per kilometre of $83 was applied to the number of kilometres of urban road to
obtain an installation cost of $755,300.
The cost of removing signs under a sign prohibitive rule was estimated by determining
the number of "U-Turn Permitted" signs which would be installed in New South Wales
under a sign permissive law as a proportion of kilometres of urban road. The proportion
of 0.106 was applied to the kilometres of urban road in Queensland, Western Australia,
South Australia and the Northern Territory to obtain an estimate of the number of signs
which need to be removed as 965, 509, 594 and 53 respectively.
Where kilometres of urban roads were used in the analysis of U-turn rules, the data
were obtained from BTCE (1984).
The number of crashes that would occur with a change in U-turn laws in New South
Wales was calculated by using the number of accidents per annum which occur in
Victoria. Between 1991 and 1994, there were an average of 9.5 accidents per annum
in Victoria. Using 1990 data which included property damage only accidents, it was
assumed that there would be approximately 20 U-turn accidents per annum at
signalised intersections.
The number of accidents per vehicle was calculated and this proportion was applied to
the number of vehicles in New South Wales to obtain 22 accidents. As it is proposed
that approximately 26 per cent of signalised intersections in New South Wales will allow
U-turns as opposed to nearly 100 per cent in Victoria, only six accidents per annum was
used in the analysis.
D2                                                Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



Publicity costs were based on Victorian information for the cost of a publicity campaign
of $150,000. It was assumed that $100,000 was a fixed cost related to television and
print media and $50,000 was for pamphlets, the print run of which would be related to
the number of drivers.
Using data obtained from NRTC (1995) on the number of driver licences in each State,
the cost per driver was determined.
This was applied to the number of drivers in each of the States and Territories to
determine the variable cost. The variable cost was added to the fixed $100,000.
Table 1 shows estimated publicity costs by State/Territory.
Table 1: Publicity Costs by State/Territory ($'000)


         State/Territory                                                         Cost

         New South Wales                                                          173
         Victoria                                                                 150
         Queensland                                                               153
         Western Australia                                                        128
         South Australia                                                          120
         Tasmania                                                                 105
         Northern Territory                                                       102
         Australian Capital Territory                                             105

                                                      TOTAL                     1 036
        APPENDIX E




FURTHER ANALYSIS - BICYCLES
      ON FOOTPATHS
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                        E1




1. INTRODUCTION
The proposal in the version of the Australian Road Rules released for public comment
allowed cyclists to travel on footpaths except where the Authority prohibited it and within
10 metres of an entrance or exit of a business that is open. Currently only Queensland,
the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory allow cyclists to ride on
footpaths. All other States prohibit footpath cycling.

2. PUBLIC COMMENT
The proposal attracted more comment than any other issue in the Australian Road
Rules. The majority of submissions did not support footpath cycling. A number of
submissions suggested that speed limits on footpaths be imposed and/or an education
program be introduced to teach cyclists to take care around pedestrians. Some
submissions suggested that only children be permitted to cycle on footpaths.

3. ROAD SAFETY
In those States where cycling on the footpath is prohibited a significant proportion of
cycling is still done on footpaths. Drummond and Jee (1988) estimated that only
65 per cent of cycling in Victoria was on road. The remaining 35 per cent was on
footpaths.
Extensive trials of legalising footpath cycling were conducted in the Bulla and
Shepparton regions of Victoria in the late 1980s. Muthusamy (1993) reports that during
the trial approximately 26 per cent of cyclists travelled solely on footpaths, 63 per cent
solely on the road and 10 per cent travelled on both the road and footpath. These
proportions are similar to those estimated by Drummond and Jee suggesting that
legalising footpath cycling will not lead to any change in the behaviour of cyclists.
After the Victorian trial was completed, Shepparton legalised footpath cycling. A
subsequent review of footpath cycling in Shepparton found that the extent of footpath
cycling remained almost the same at 27 per cent compared with 28 per cent in the
earlier study (Muthusamy 1993). This further supports the notion that cyclists already
use the footpath when they deem it safer to so do and are, therefore, unlikely to change
their behaviour.
Considerable concern was expressed that the legalisation of cycling on footpaths would
lead to a widespread increase in the number of cyclists using footpaths, consequently
reducing pedestrian safety. The data above suggest that there is unlikely to be an
increase in the level of footpath cycling over that which currently occurs, albeit illegally.
Drummond (1989) reported that the risk of a cyclist/pedestrian accident on the footpath
is 0.2 per 10 million pedestrians passed.
E2                                                    Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules



While the risk to a pedestrian may be underestimated because of an under-reporting of
accidents, Drummond (1989) found there was no significant under-reporting of
cyclist/pedestrian collisions on footpaths resulting in injuries which required
hospitalisation. No data are available on under-reporting of cyclist/pedestrian collisions
which do not require hospitalisation but it would be unlikely to increase the estimated
risk of a collision to an unacceptable level.
With respect to cyclists, riding on footpaths is comparatively safer than riding on roads.
Drummond and Jee (1988) concluded that cycling on the footpath was significantly
safer than cycling on arterial roads. The accident risk of a cyclist on the road is 2.6
times higher than cycling on footpaths.

4. PROHIBITION
The proposal would require States and Territories to prohibit the riding of bicycles in
specific areas where it was inappropriate and/or likely to result in greater
pedestrian/cyclist interaction. This prohibition could be done by the use of signs,
gazettal etc.
The estimated cost of a sign, including installation, is approximately $85. Estimates of
the number of signs that will be required are unavailable. The costs are not likely to be
significant as they will only be installed where absolutely necessary due to difficulties in
enforcing the requirement.

4.1     Not Riding Within 10 Metres of an Open Business
During public comment, nine comments were received on the proposal to prohibit
cycling on footpaths within 10 metres of a business which is open. All of the comments
suggested that the proposal was impractical or unenforceable. Three submissions
suggested that footpath cycling should be banned in all business areas.
The prohibition of footpath cycling within 10 metres of an open business provides a
number of practical problems for cyclists in so far as they must be able to:
    adequately judge 10 metres; and
    know when a business is open or closed.
The Australian Capital Territory has a rule which prohibits cycling within 10 metres of a
business regardless of whether or not it is open. It has advised that the level of
compliance with the law is relatively high. Arguably, compliance is more likely due to the
propensity for businesses to be located in designated shopping centres which are
regularly patrolled by police.
In areas which have a higher number of strip shopping areas or single shops there is
less potential for effective enforcement. It is likely that cyclists will disobey the law as is
currently the case with the ban on footpath cycling in New South Wales, Victoria,
Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                       E3



Alternatives to the 10 metre rule would be to:
(i) install signs prohibiting footpath cycling near businesses; or
(ii) have a statutory prohibition on footpath cycling within 10 metres of all business
      areas regardless of whether they are open or closed; or
(iii) allow footpath cycling near businesses; or
(iv) prohibit bicycles from being ridden in large business areas.
The first alternative of installing signs would impose a substantial cost, as there are
thousands of small businesses. To install signs 10 metres from these areas, at an
approximate cost of $85 per sign, is likely to cost millions of dollars. Unless there is
enforcement of this rule, the signs may be ineffective in stopping cyclists from travelling
on footpaths in business areas. An advantage of using signs is that they inform cyclists
who would not have had contact with the road rules that cycling is prohibited in a
specific area.
Without enforcement alternative (ii) may be ineffective. Cyclists are likely to disregard
the rule, as currently occurs in the States which prohibit footpath cycling, or at least in
areas where there are only a few shops along residential roads. Nonetheless, this
alternative is superior to that which appeared in the public comment version insofar as
cyclists will no longer need to judge when a business is open or closed.
Alternative (iii) would allow footpath cycling in business areas and have the potential to
increase pedestrian/cyclist collisions. Drummond (1989) reported daily pedestrian
passing rates by land use. The number of pedestrians passed by cyclists in shopping
areas were up to six times more than in other areas. No data are available on the
number of pedestrian/cyclist collisions by land use but the small overall risk factor of 0.2
accidents per 10 million pedestrians passed suggests that cyclists may compensate for
the increase in pedestrian traffic around shopping areas by reducing speed or becoming
more alert to their surroundings.
Comments on the earlier version of the Australian Road Rules indicate that there is
considerable community concern about the use of bicycles on footpaths. Without clear
road safety data which could offset community concerns it would be difficult to introduce
a policy of allowing cyclists to ride bicycles near businesses.
A prohibition on cyclists riding in large business areas, alternative (iv), could be
achieved by either the use of signs or a definition of the size of a large business area.
The former approach would be the more logical in that a definition will not be able to
encompass all business areas where cyclists should be prohibited.
The use of signs will impose a cost on the States and the Territories but without data on
the number of business areas that would require signs, no estimate can be made.
As with alternative (i), the use of signs helps to overcome the problem of cyclists being
unaware of statutory requirements because they are not of an age where they would
have had contact with the road rules.
E4                                                 Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules




5. COMMUNITY CONCERN
As discussed above, the issue of footpath cycling attracted more submissions than any
other in the road rules. There was substantial concern expressed by senior citizens and
the visually impaired worried about the risk of being struck by a cyclist.
Travelsafe (1993) reviewed the introduction of footpath cycling in Queensland. The
Committee reported that:
       "The lack of adequate publicity, promotion and community consultation and
       involvement about the decision to allow footpath cycling has ... contributed
       significantly to the safety problem, either real or perceived."
To allay any concerns within the community on the introduction of footpath cycling, a
community awareness program could be introduced to address issues such as the
rationale underlying the introduction of footpath cycling, the expected impact and the
responsibilities of cyclists and pedestrian. The cost of a community awareness
campaign will depend on its structure but, as an example, a pamphlet with a print run of
a million will cost approximately $300,000.
Throughout the development of the Australian Road Rules, footpath cycling has
remained prominent in policy discussions. The issue was discussed by Transport
Agency Chief Executives, some of whom expressed concern regarding the impact of
footpath cycling on pedestrian amenity.

6. CONCLUSION
The data suggest that legalising cycling on footpaths will have no adverse safety
impacts, as the level of footpath cycling is not expected to change from that which
currently occurs in those States which prohibit footpath cycling. As a result of public
concern, it has been decided to only permit footpath cycling for children under the age
of 12 years (primary school) but to permit each State and Territory to make its own laws
for other age groups. This will permit Queensland, the Northern Territory and the ACT
to maintain current law.
It appears to be impractical to prohibit footpath cycling within 10 metres of an open
business. While the use of signs near every business would overcome problems of
judging distance, the cost would be prohibitive. It would be more appropriate to prohibit
footpath cycling near large business areas through the use of signs.
Community concern will need to be addressed to facilitate the introduction of footpath
cycling.
The road rules will allow the Authority to prohibit the riding of bicycles on footpaths in
certain areas.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                E5




7. REFERENCES
Drummond AE and Jee FM (1988) "The Risk of Bicyclist Accident Involvement"
MUARC Report No. 2.
Drummond AE (1989) "Pedestrian Casualties Resulting from Collisions with Cyclists on
Footpaths" MUARC Report No. 8.
Muthusamy R (1993) "Footpath Cycling" VicRoads.
                APPENDIX F




FURTHER ANALYSIS - HAND HELD MOBILE PHONES
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                                      F1




1. HAND-HELD MOBILE PHONES
Currently, the use of hand-held telephones while driving is banned in only New South
Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. All the other States and the Territories allow hand-held
phones to be used while driving but provisions relating to drivers having full control over
the vehicle can be used where the use of a mobile phone adversely affects a driver's
control. A number of States and Territories have indicated that they are planning to
prohibit the use of hand-held mobile phones.
There are two possible options which could be adopted. They are:
(i)   prohibit the use of hand-held mobile phones while driving; or
(ii)  have no regulation in the Australian Road Rules, ie rely on the requirement to
      have proper control of a vehicle to ensure hand-held mobile phones are only
      used when it is safe to do so.
There are no available crash statistics from crash databases linking the use of hand-
held phones to crashes which may, in part, be attributable to deficiencies in database
codes that may not provide for the use of mobile-phones. There have been two fatalities
in New South Wales recently where mobile phones were thought to be a contributing
factor.
There is also no suggestion that, with the proliferation of hand-held phones, there has
been any overall increase in accidents or that the rate at which accident levels have
been decreasing has been adversely affected.
Accidents in which the use of a hand-held mobile phone is a contributing factor to the
accident may not be reported or may be misreported as:
(i)    drivers may be reluctant to admit to using a hand-held mobile phone while
      driving where it is prohibited; or
(ii)   the accidents may result in damage only to property.
There have been a number of studies which have attempted to determine the safety
risk associated with using hand-held phones while driving. McKnight and McKnight
(1993) subjected drivers to five different scenarios while using a driving simulator to
determine if using mobile phones distracted drivers from the driving task. They
concluded that drivers were most distracted during an intense conversation and this
was only slightly more distracting than tuning a radio. Older drivers (more than 49 years
old) were more adversely affected when using mobile phones.
Other studies or reviews (Bailey 1994, South and Anderson 1993, White 1995 and
Queensland Transport 1995) showed that, while conversing, brake reaction times and
lane weaving increased and vehicle speed decreased with drivers often increasing the
distance between their vehicle and the one in front.
While McKnight and McKnight (1993) determined that prior experience of using mobile
phones had no effect, other studies indicate that regular mobile phone users
compensate by increasing their alertness and anticipation in traffic.
F2                                                               Draft RIS: Australian Road Rules



There also appears to be no difference in accident risk between using hand-held and
hands-free mobile phones in normal driving conditions. There is some suggestion,
however, that where the driving task is difficult, the use of hand-held phones presents
more of a problem than hands-free operation.
Violanti and Marshall (1996) found that increased use of mobile phones was associated
with an increase risk of having an accident. For instance, the use of a mobile phone for
more than 50 minutes per month was associated with a 5.5 per cent risk of having an
accident. Violanti and Marshall, however, used a small sample and had no direct
evidence that drivers were using a phone at the time of an accident.
Redelmeier and Tibshirani (1997) estimated that the risk of a collision was four times
higher for drivers using mobile phones than when the phone was not being used. They
defined the period for mobile phone use to include telephone calls occurring during the
10 minutes before the estimated time of the crash. No apparent link is made between
the time the crash occurs and whether a mobile phone is being used.
Redelmeier and Tibshirani also found there was no difference in crash risk between
using hand held and hands free mobile phones.
However, Redelmeier and Tibshirani caution against using the data to suggest that
mobile phones are harmful as no causal link has been established as: the use of the
mobile phone may be associated with emotional stress; there are no serious injury/fatal
accident data; and there is no information to determine if the driver with the mobile
phone was at fault or reacting to another collision.

2. CONCLUSION
The available data are inconclusive as to whether the use of hand-held mobile phones
while driving increases the risk of an accident. There appears to be widespread support
from State and Territory road and transport authorities for a prohibition on the use of
hand-held mobile phones. Considering that three States already prohibit their use and
other States and Territories are likely to introduce such a prohibition, the use of hand-
held mobile phones will be prohibited.

3. REFERENCES
Bailey TJ (1994) "The Road Safety Implications of Mobile Phone Use While Driving: A
Short Literature Review" Office of Road Safety, Report Series 4/94 South Australian
Department of Transport.
McKnight AJ and McKnight AS (1993) "The Effect of Cellular Phone Use Upon Driver
Attention" Accident Analysis and Prevention Vol 25, No 3, pp 259-265.
Queensland Transport (1995) "Briefing Note - Hand Held Car Phones" April.
Redelmeier D and Tibshirani R (1997), “Association Between Cellular - Telephone
Calls and Motor Vehicle Collisions,” The New England Journal of Medicine, Vol 336 No
7 pp453-458.
Regulatory Impact Statement: Australian Road Rules                              F3




South D and Anderson A (1993) "Use of Hand Held Car Phones and Microphones
while Driving" VicRoads, August.
Violanti JM and Marshall JR (1996) “Cellular Phones and Traffic Accidents: an
Epidemiological Approach” Accident Analysis and Prevention, Vol. 28, No. 2 pp 265-
270.
White M (1995) "Issue Paper: Banning the Use of Hand-Held Mobile Phones while
Driving" Office of Road Safety, South Australian Department of Transport.
          APPENDIX G




ESTIMATED COSTS OF INTRODUCING
    AUSTRALIAN ROAD RULES
                            Signs/Road Markings           Publicity   Training/Enforcement     Other *     TOTAL
                                                         Education     Computer Systems
New South Wales        9,753,000 (Minimum)               6,000,000         8,613,000          15,000     24,381,000 (Minimum)
                       35,455,000 (Maximum)                                                              50,083,000 (Maximum)
Victoria                 2,700,000                       2,250,000                +                      4,950,000
Queensland              2,800,000†                       2,070,000          511,000                      5,381,000
Western Australia        6,938,000                       1,500,000          840,000           50,000     9,328,000
South Australia          2,235,000                       2,765,000          200,000                      5,200,000
Tasmania                    272,500                        168,500          385,000          128,000       954,000
Northern Territory          100,000                        120,000          305,000                        525,000
ACT                      1,750,000                         250,000         300,000+          180,000     2,480,000
TOTAL                                                                                                    53,199,000 (Minimum)
                                                                                                         78,901,000 (Maximum)
*   Eg. costs for legislative/regulation changes.
+ Police costs not estimated.
† Includes costs of amending engineering practice documentation

								
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