Learning to drive is an exciting, but nervous time. Road crashes are one of the leading causes of death and serious injury for young people.

Youth vehicle accident fatalities in New Zealand are the highest in the OECD. In 2015 young drivers in New Zealand aged 15–24 were involved in 90 fatal traffic crashes, 72 where 15–24 year-old drivers had the primary responsibility.

Fatal crashes where the driver’s contribution is significant, such as loss of control, driving too fast for the conditions or inexperience, are 2–3 times more likely to involve 15–24 year old drivers, than drivers 25 years and older.

To increase the safety of young drivers, Council provides opportunities for our young drivers to learn and improve their awareness and skills.

This can be done by attending our Leading Learners, half day training courses at Ruapuna, during the school holidays.

In the next upcoming courses are on 21 September and 22 September. Registration is essential.


In addition, Holden Street Smart training days also run at Ruapuna during school holiday breaks.

Holden Street Smart is a one-day event providing young drivers and their parents/caregivers the opportunity to undertake supervised driving practice. There is a focus on developing good decision-making strategies and vital skills for safe driving, including assessing themselves, reading the road environment, resisting peer pressure, managing or eliminating distractions and planning ahead.

The programme will take place at Ruapuna, under the watchful eye of qualified coaches plus the parent/caregiver. This provides the parent the opportunity to also assess themselves, in order to be a better coach and mentor to their teen.

Online registration is available.

It costs $79 to register for a Holden Street Smart training day. However, after you attend, Council will arrange to have that $79 refunded to you. That way, it costs you nothing to gain some skills.

If you would like more information about the Holden Street Smart programme, please contact the Road Safety Coordinator on 347 2800.

Other programmes available for young drivers

There are many education programmes that can help educate young drivers and increase their skill level, knowledge and experience so they can become more confident behind the wheel. Amongst these are:

Right Car


Driving Tests