Canberra's P-plater laws are the most relaxed in the country, despite the continued over-representation of young drivers in crashes on our roads.
As the Australian Medical Association calls for national action in the wake of a horror holiday road toll, the ACT's police union says the government has been "asleep at the wheel" on road safety.
A government spokeswoman said the capital "does not have all the components of a standard level model graduated licensing scheme" but revealed that could soon change as part of an upcoming review.
"A discussion paper proposing reforms to bring the ACT into line with other states and the national framework is being developed and a consultation process will be undertaken this year," she said.
You can't drive a V8, hit speeds above 90km/h or even drive late at night in certain parts of Australia if you're on your P-plates.
Yet for fresh Canberra drivers, there's only one rule to remember: don't have a drink.
Like the rest of the country, ACT P-platers must have a blood alcohol concentration of zero at all times, instead of the standard 0.05 for fully-licenced drivers. But there is only one other specific restriction on when or how they can drive - barring them from towing another car unless it is a trailer weighing 750kg or less.
President of the AMA's ACT branch Professor Stephen Robson welcomed the government's review but raised concerns about the current "baffling" state of Canberra's P-plater laws.
"There's a lot at stake; one high-powered car with a few young blokes in it can have enormous life-shattering consequences," he said.
"It makes no sense to me that if you cross the border into Queanbeyan there are such completely different standards for provisional drivers."
Research shows the first month of driving with P-plates is the riskiest time. And, with each additional passenger of a similar age in the car, the likelihood of a young driver crashing goes up.
Seventeen years ago, a study of ACT crash data and driver behaviour by Monash University recommended bringing passenger restrictions into force for P-platers, as has been done in most other states and territories, but such a move was never implemented.
"It's a bad combination as I see it when a young person gets a big car, and piles all their mates in, there's terrible potential for loss of life and there's nothing more tragic," Professor Robson said.
"They just need more experience."
According to the most recent ACT figures, drivers aged between 15 and 29 make up 34 per cent of casualties on our roads. And, despite representing just 6 per cent of ACT licence holders, P-platers accounted for 7 per cent of drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2016, and 11 per cent in crashes causing injury.
A spokeswoman for the Australian Federal Police Association said, given the figures, all approaches to cut the death and injury toll for young ACT drivers should be explored as a priority.
More police resources "to manage and enforce road safety" were also urgently needed, she said.
While the road toll in the ACT remains low compared to other, larger jurisdictions, it is no secret that many young Canberrans are also injured on NSW roads.
Professor Robson said one of his daughter's school friends was recovering in hospital after sustaining "terrible injuries" during a crash on a trip to the South Coast this summer.
Calvary Hospital emergency doctor David Caldicott said he had seen young drivers wheeled into emergency wards throughout his career and supported the current zero alcohol restriction in all states and territories.
But any change to provisional driver laws in the territory should be based on evidence that those restrictions were working elsewhere, he said.
"Our laws might be slack compared to the rest of Australia but does that mean the rest of Australia got it right?" Dr Caldicott said.
"We can't just target young people. The ACT government has generally been good about avoiding knee-jerk legislation and going off evidence."
Driver impairment was a key concern for all age groups, he said, and older drivers were another high risk cohort.
In a recent study of beefed-up P-plater restrictions in Queensland, researchers linked declines in crash rates to the new rules around passenger restrictions at night, phone use and high-powered cars.
Those results are also in line with a 2017 review of the national graduated licensing scheme, which found the measure had reduced overall crashes, injuries and deaths involving provisional drivers. The NSW government said it had seen a 50 per cent drop in the number of young drivers killed in the state since the model was introduced.
An ACT government spokeswoman said, "Targeted and evidenced based restrictions on young drivers support the ACT's commitment to [reducing road fatalities]."
Last week, the AMA called for "zero tolerance" of learner and provisional drivers caught using mobile phones or devices on the road, and recommended an automatic loss of their licence for up to a year.
The ACT government is believed to still be considering whether or not to follow suit on NSW's 2016 ban on P-platers using hands-free devices or loudspeaker functions with mobile phones.
Professor Robson said Australia needed to adopt a nationally consistent approach to P-plater restrictions.
The 2018 road toll currently stands at one for the ACT, after the 24-year-old son of long-time Canberra Liberal politician Bill Stefaniak was killed in a crash in Hughes.
All jurisdictions enforce a zero blood alcohol concentration and require provisional drivers to display their P-plates. But some have stricter rules than others.
Over the border, you can't drive more than 90km/h until you graduate to your green Ps, when a 100km/h limit applies. But you also can't drive a high-powered car, carry more than one passenger under the age of 21 between 11pm and 5am, or tow trailers weighing more than 250kg. P-platers are also not allowed to use hands-free kits or wireless handsets for their phones and forget about using loud speaker. That's banned too, for both you and your passengers. If you get clocked speeding on your red Ps, you'll lose your licence for at least three months, and the same fate will be in store if you get busted speeding twice on your green plates.
You can't drive between midnight and 5am, or over 100km/h, you can't have more than one passenger aged between 16 and 20 and you can't drive a high-powered car until you reach 25. No hands-free or loudspeakers on your phone either.
If you're under 25 and driving between 11pm and 5am, you can only only carry one passenger under the age of 21 who is not an immediate family member. Hands-free and loudspeaker bans are also in place for mobile phones as well as bans on high-powered cars, and you will find yourself slapped with a curfew for driving if you rack up any demerit points.
You also can't drive high-powered cars or use hands-free devices on your mobile. You must not tow another vehicle or trailer and you can't carry more than one passenger aged between 16 and 21 at any time of day until you upgrade to your green Ps.
You can't drive between midnight and 5am for the first six months of getting your P-plates, and you'll have reduced demerit point limits until you're no longer a "novice driver".
After going through two different rounds of L-plates, you still have to stick to 100km/h in 110km/h zones and 90km/h in 100km/h zones.
You can't hit speeds above 100km/h and tougher demerit points also apply. But you can get your licence ahead of everyone else in the country - at the age of 16 and six months.
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