Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs whether drivers who chalk up demerit points can be made to attend short lectures and undergo tests so that their skills can be refreshed, for the safety of all road users.
1. Drivers who have accumulated demerit points can attend the Driver Improvement Points System (DIPS) Retraining Course or the Safe Driving Course.
2. The DIPS Retraining Course is a two-day course for motorists whose licences have been suspended because they have accumulated a certain number of demerit points. These motorists are required to pass theory and practical tests at the end of the course, whereupon they can have their suspension periods shortened.
3. The Safe Driving Course is an early intervention measure that provides corrective education to motorists, even before they become liable for suspension. Participants go through a three-and-a-half-hour classroom session and a 30-minute practical session before taking a quiz. Upon the successful completion of the course, three demerit points will be expunged from the participant's driving record.
4. These courses are not mandatory. They offer an opportunity for motorists to come forward to correct their driving behaviour, and refresh their driving skills. This will foster greater ownership of their driving behaviour.