Road Safety Act 1986 and Road Safety (Driver) Regulations 2019

Learn more about the changes to the Road Safety Act and Road Safety (Drivers) Regulations 2019.

On 29 October 2019 a number of changes to the Road Safety act 1986 have taken effect. The Road Safety (Driver) Regulations 2009 expired and a new set of regulations have commenced on 29 October. The new regulations are The Road Safety (Driver) Regulations 2019. The following is an overview of the changes that have occurred from 29 October 2019.

Changes to Road Safety Act 1986

Deemed Service of notices 

VicRoads notices are deemed ‘served’ seven days after they were sent, even if the notices are returned undelivered. Limited exceptions will apply for genuine reasons (e.g. domestic violence). This is consistent with the service of traffic infringement notices. 

VicRoads has the authority to update a customer’s address based on a notification from an authorised third party (e.g. Victoria Police). 

Demerit Point Scheme changes 

A range of changes have been made impacting how demerit point suspensions and extended demerit point periods are served, including: 

  • Demerit point suspension are not interrupted and run concurrently with any other licence suspension or cancellation. An extended demerit point period won't be interrupted and will run concurrently with a licence suspension or cancellation 
  • Broadening of the number of offences that breach the 12 month extended demerit point period (include non-demerit point offences e.g. speeding where there is a licence ban).
  • Demerit points are applied to the following existing offences:
    • learner driver driving a motor vehicle without a supervising driver sitting beside the driver (3 points)
    • failing to display "L" plates (1 point) and
    • motorcycle learner permit holder not wearing an approved high visibility vest or jacket (1 point)

Changes to Road Safety (Driver) Regulations

Requirement to convert to a Victorian Licence 

Interstate and overseas licence holders need to convert to a Victorian Licence/learner permit after living in Victoria for six months. If you're currently using an overseas licence, you'll have six months from 29 October 2019, to convert to a Victorian licence.

International drivers need to convert their licence and those driving on learner permits will need to take a Victorian learner permit test.  

There is no change to the licence requirements and assessments.

Passenger Restrictions (XPAS)

Currently a P1 driver whose licence has been suspended or cancelled for a driving offence has a restriction applied to carry no more than 1 passenger, regardless of age. 

This condition no longer applies and existing XPAS conditions have ended at midnight on 28/10/2019. The review of the graduated licensing scheme did not find any benefit in this additional restriction which has only ever been applied to a small number of drivers.

The peer passenger restriction however continues to be applied through the Graduated Licencing System where P1 drivers can only carry 1 passenger aged 16 to under 22 years of age. Exemptions apply. 

Probationary Prohibited Vehicles

Probationary prohibited vehicles are determined based on power-to-mass ratio. Exemptions to drive a lower performance turbo/supercharged vehicle is removed, such as Club Permit/historic vehicles.

Heavy vehicle licences

Heavy vehicle combination licence requires the applicant to have an Australian Medium Rigid or Heavy Rigid licence for at least 12 months and complete a VicRoads approved Heavy Combination training course. The requirement to hold an Australian car licence for 24 months is removed.

Other changes

A range of minor, mostly technical initiatives have also been implemented to improve the operation of the regulations (clean up, new or amended definitions, etc). They include interpretation of time provisions and renumbering of regulations, and general regulations updates.

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