First Aid Training For Queensland Driver’s License Holders

First aid, News from St John - 29 May 2023

St John Ambulance Queensland, with support from Bundaberg Lord Mayor Jack Dempsey and 2022 Senior Australian of the Year, Val Dempsey, launch a petition to make First Aid training a pre-requisite to obtaining a driver’s license in Queensland.

Queensland has one of the country’s highest rates of road fatalities and trauma, with 299 lives tragically lost last year.

Val Dempsey knows firsthand the ongoing impact road trauma has on survivors and is leading the call for change.  Val’s daughter was involved in a tragic crash when she was a teenager, which claimed the life of her friend.

“My daughter was jammed and pinned in the driver’s seat with this 21-year-old young lad from Canada dying in her arms.”

Her daughter survived, but the trauma inspired Val to campaign for change.

“She vividly remembers people coming to that horrible scene and saying, We want to help, but we don’t know what to do. “ Val Dempsey.

Evidence shows that bystander First Aid reduces pre-hospital deaths and severe injury in the critical time it takes emergency services to arrive at the scene.

This lifesaving legislation could mean the difference between a life saved, and a life lost.

Even in the shortest ambulance response time of 9–14 minutes, without immediate first aid, a person with a blocked airway won’t survive.

Compulsory First Aid training has long been a part of Learner Driver training in more than 10 European countries and it’s time we do this in Australia.

St John Ambulance Queensland is calling on the Queensland Government to make First Aid qualification, a pre-requisite to obtaining a driver’s license, at no cost to the learner driver.  Why not equip an entire generation of bystanders with the First Aid skills to help reduce deaths, severe injury and trauma on our roads.

Let’s all be part of the change, save lives and sign the petition today.