Young drivers had the opportunity to get driving tips from Australian racing driver Mark Larkham at the Young Driver Education Night, coordinated by Beaudesert Rotary.
Larkham’s presentation came at the end of an emotional evening and he said that driving is a privilege, not a right.
“To do it well is hard. The same skills that make a great racing driver will make you a great driver on the road,” he said.
With several fatal accidents affecting the Beaudesert community in the past year, the night held special meaning.
Speaking for sponsors Bendigo Bank, Branch Manager Charli Baden said the evening was the anniversary of the death of her father, who had been killed in a car crash 11 years prior.
Every speaker on the night emphasised safety, with Senior Constable Tony Fishburn telling attendees it only takes five seconds for things to go horribly wrong.
“A car travelling at 60km/h could travel 83 metres in the time it takes to send a text,” he said.
“Put your phone on silent or somewhere that you aren’t tempted to get it and parents, if you text your child, don’t expect a reply straight away.”
Corey Rooks experienced the effect a distraction can have when he tried the driving simulator, provided for the night by Queensland Police.
“At least you get to reset this one,” said his father, Shane, “In the real world you don’t get to reset.”