Q&A - Does Your Supervisor Have to be Sane?

New Driver Signs 2011I'm just wondering if there is something in writing that states that the person who is being the supervising passenger, that is of age and holds a valid licence, is also required to be of sound mind and body. This meaning, specifically, that if the supervising passenger is drunk and unable to drive, they can still technically be the valid passenger, and the person with the "L" can still drive them home.

I have searched and I cant seem to find anything that states the passenger has to be of any kind of lucid state.

Comments

Answer

This is not a silly question!

The rules you refer to requiring a supervisor say the following:

Accompanying adult conditions and passenger restrictions for learner's licence

30.06(1.1) A person to whom a Class 7L licence is issued on or after October 6, 2003 must not operate a motor vehicle of a category designated in section 30.01 (2) for that class of driver's licence unless the person is accompanied by another person who

(a) is at least 25 years of age or is a licensed driver training instructor engaged in providing practical driver training in accordance with Division 27,

(b) holds a valid and subsisting driver's licence, other than a learner's licence or a Class 7 licence, of a class that permits him or her to operate a motor vehicle of that category, and

(c) occupies

(i)   the seat beside the operator, or

(ii)   the seat or area immediately behind and to the right of the operator, in the case of a motor vehicle of the category designated for the class of licence issued in which there is no seat beside the operator.

and

Accompanying adult conditions and passenger restrictions for Class 7 licence

30.071 (1) Subject to subsection (2), a person to whom a Class 7 licence is issued on or after October 6, 2003 must not carry more than one passenger while operating a motor vehicle of a category designated in section 30.01 (2) for that class of driver's licence unless the person is accompanied by another person who

(a) is at least 25 years of age or is a licensed driver training instructor engaged in providing practical driver training to the person in accordance with Division 27,

(b) holds a valid and subsisting driver's licence, other than a learner's licence or a Class 7 licence, of a class that permits him or her to operate a motor vehicle of that category, and

(c) occupies

i) the seat beside the operator, or

(ii) the seat or area immediately behind and to the right of the operator, in the case of a motor vehicle of the category designated for the class of licence issued in which there is no seat beside the operator.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a passenger who is an immediate family member of the person.

It really doesn't say anything beyond the fact that they must be adults of a certain age or a driving instructor, both of whom must be properly licenced. So what if a GLP driver has a supervisor that meets these criteria, but is impaired by alcohol or drugs, or is not mentally competent?

I'm going to have to puzzle on this one! Stay tuned....

When they wrote the regulations ...

... they probably didn't consider this issue specifically, is my guess.

I doubt that the Class 7 'L' Driver would be considered at fault in any way for the physical or mental condition of their co-pilot, so long as they have one who meets the basic criteria.

It's important to realize though, that this same Class 7 'L' Driver doesn't just hold a practice permit, or anything like it; they hold a Driver License, albeit with restrictions (time of day, displaying the L, number of passengers, and so on) which they are required to meet.

That there Class 7 'L' Driver had to earn their license, by meeting certain standards; medical fitness, eyesight, knowledge, etc.  So that there Class 7 'L' (or N, whatever) is the person responsible for operating the vehicle, they are the person behind the wheel, and it's up to them how they govern themselves.  Not every co-pilot is necessarily fit to guide, let alone teach, just because they're also licensed.

For sure, this could potentially put a youngster in a very tough position, particularly if they're still needing guidance on the basic, fundamental issues of operating a vehicle.  But they can also decide not to drive at this time.

Does your supervisor have to be sane

Shortly after the graduated licencing came into effect I saw a report put out by ICBC which listed the accident rate for new drivers. One of the interesting items was that new drivers taught by professional driving instructors had a higher accident rate than those that were taught by parents or friends.

Since that original report I have not been able to find any reference to what the accident and or ticket rate is for new drivers being taught by professional driving instructors or parents/friends.

Can you find this info?

I don't believe this is correct.

Shortly after the graduated licencing came into effect I saw a report put out by ICBC which listed the accident rate for new drivers. One of the interesting items was that new drivers taught by professional driving instructors had a higher accident rate than those that were taught by parents or friends.

When ICBC introduced GLP, one of the fundamental changes for new drivers, who would on completion of the Knowledge Test obtain a Class 7 L license, rather than a Class 5 LDL, was the expansion of the minimal waiting time before they could be eligible for their Road Test from 30 days to a year.

An obvious consequence of doing this was that it would have a devastating affect on the Driver Training Industry; few businesses can survive if eighty-to-ninety per cent of their income suddenly disappears for eleven to twelve months.

New drivers who satisfactorily completed extensive training and practice requirements - typically a 20-Hour Classroom Theory Course, as well as 12-Hours of Practical Instruction, accompanied by a further 48-Hours of concurrent practice behind the wheel with a qualified supervisor (i.e. parent or friend) - would then be issued a Declaration of Completion by the Driver Training School.

This D.O.C. would confer two fundamental benefits on the new driver; two Grade 11 High School credits from the Ministry of Education, and a reduction in the waiting time for the Early Exam Date to six months instead of 12 months.

ICBC did of course track comparative crash rates, and continue to do so.  No conclusion could be drawn for some time, of course; at least a couple of years before anything of consequence could be discovered, and a lot longer than that for new drivers to complete the whole GLP process (L license for a minimum of a year, N license for a minimum of two years, then eligible to exit GLP by taking the Class 5 Road Test and passing it, thus exiting GLP).

From memory, I think it was around 2003 - about five years after GLP was introduced - that ICBC (much to everyone's surprise) determined that there didn't seem to be any difference in the crash rates between drivers who had received professional instruction and those who hadn't.  The reduction in waiting time for the EED was then changed from six months to three months.

So the conclusion would seem to be that while Driver Training Schools are generally very good at preparing students for their Road Test, they're not able to fundamentally affect individual's long term driving behaviour when first training them how to drive.

Having been in the industry for almost 29 years, I would concur; it's my belief that the new driver is essentially so task-loaded with what they're doing behind the wheel just in terms of physically operating the vehicle and processing the information from the driving environment, that it's impractical to expect them to learn any more advanced driving skills.  

That's why my recommendation would be that any driver should complete at least a year behind the wheel before then being ready for Defensive Driving skills, or any advanced training whether it be learning to drive commercial vehicles or skid control courses, etc.

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