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Australian drivers can now get R plates if they need space and empathy on the road

Australian drivers can now get R plates if they need space and empathy on the road

It's hoped the new car attachment will force people to acknowledge the mental health of drivers.

A new plate is now available for Australian drivers returning to the roads after a traumatic experience.

mycar has launched ‘return’ or ‘R’ plates to let motorists know these drivers should be given extra space and consideration on the road.

The company said via their website: “We care for those with physical injuries from a road incident, but we rarely consider the mental toll road trauma can take.

“The R plate signifies to other road users that the driver may need some extra care, giving them time and space to recover. Recovering drivers can confidently return to the road knowing they are in a supportive space.”

They added that they hope the initiative will force people to acknowledge the mental health of newly returned drivers while making them feel safe behind the wheel.

Transportation and post-injury rehabilitation expert associate professor Dr Jason Thompson from the University of Melbourne told The Daily Telegraph that while we often look at the physical impact of road trauma, people often overlook its psychological effects.

“The journey through to recovery, and a return to confidence, is unique to each individual and often takes time,” he said.

“Returning to the road can be a scary and a nerve-racking experience, so even just having those feelings recognised could help people in their recovery.”

Dave Hewison/Alamy Live News

Motorist Matthew van Reenen also told the outlet he struggled with driving confidence after experiencing a minor crash in 2020.

He said that while he didn’t end up in the hospital and didn’t suffer any significant injuries, the incident still ‘rattled’ him.

He added: “That was heightened by Covid as well – it was a perfect storm.

“It really knocked my confidence. I think R plates will really help people like myself get back out there."

In a survey conducted by Pureprofile in August, the research found that roughly 75 per cent of Australians have been affected by a road incident, according to Perth Now.

Among these numbers, 21 per cent of participants said they took between two to six months off from driving following the accident.

The study also found that 66 per cent of Australians felt safer when driving with P or L plates on their car, as drivers recognised the need for extra time and space on the road.

So, if you’re in need of an R plate, head to the mycar website today.

Featured Image Credit: mycar. Michael Spring / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Australia, Good News, News, Mental Health