The driving age in Western Australia is 17 years. A learner can drive at the age of 16 under the supervision of a fully licensed driver. After obtaining a licence, a driver continues to be subject to restrictions during a 2-year probationary period.
A Learner’s Permit to drive a car in Western Australia can be gained by anyone aged 16 or over after successfully passing a computer-based driving theory test and an eyesight test. Drivers with Learner’s Permits may drive only whilst accompanied by either a qualified driving instructor or a person who has held a valid licence of the same type as the permit for 4 years. Learner drivers must display black-on-yellow “L” plates, and must not drive with a blood alcohol content exceeding 0.00%. Learner’s Permits expire after three years. After a recent bill passed through parliament, Phase 1 drivers are now permitted to drive on Perth freeways as well as other roads outside the boundaries of Kings Park.
A Provisional Licence is awarded when learner drivers aged 17 years or over complete 50 hours of driving experience (and 6 months have elapsed from obtaining their Learner’s Permit) in their log book and pass a practical driving test accompanied by an examiner employed by the government. Drivers with provisional licences must display white-on-red ‘P’ plates whenever they drive within the first 6 months, can drive unaccompanied but cannot drive with a blood alcohol content over 0.00%. They are not allowed to drive between 12 am – 5 am unless driving to and from place of work or study.
For last 18 months, provisionally licensed drivers must display white-on-green ‘P’ plates and cannot drive with a blood alcohol content over 0.00%.
As of 1 December 2010, the Western Australian Government introduced a new Graduated Demerit Point system for Novice Drivers (which includes L- and P-plate drivers). Under this system, a driver may accrue less than 4 demerit points within the first year of their provisional licence, and less than 8 points within the second year, before losing their licence. These limits include demerit points accrued before these 1- and 2-year periods.
The provisional licence automatically converts into a full driver’s licence after the 2-year probationary period. Drivers with full driver’s licences must drive with a blood alcohol content less than 0.05%, may accrue less than 12 demerit points before being disqualified, and may drive at up to 110 km/h (the maximum speed limit in the state). ‘P’ plate drivers may also drive up to 110 km /h, where permitted by the state.
WA has two classes of drivers licence: C which enables one to drive any vehicle weighing less than 4.5 tonnes C-A which enables one to drive any vehicle fitted with an automatic transmission and weighing less than 4.5 tonnes. Refer
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