Driving Laws in Sydney You Ought to Know

April 6, 2022

Those planning a road trip in Australia know that there are plenty of exciting destinations that are accessible with a car. Sydney, for example, is an excellent place to drive around.

But if you aren’t a local, you can’t just steer the wheel away without knowing the driving rules that encompass the place. That’s why it’s essential to understand certain driving laws if you’re planning to drive from Sydney to anywhere across the country or back.

Here are a few rules to watch out for to help you prepare for your next Aussie road trip. 

What Are the Driving Rules in Australia?

Generally in Australia, people drive on the left side of a two-way road. So, if you are a traveller and used to having a car with the steering wheel on the left, you need to get used to Australian road rules when renting a car. This is important because you’ll need to learn fast where to turn at an intersection. 

Locals have their driving licences. But if you are a tourist, you must have an international driving permit and the driver’s licence in your country of origin if you wish to drive around.

Take heed of other driving rules too:

  • When you’re driving cross country, park in line with traffic. You’re only allowed to park the car facing forward on the road’s left side so that the passenger door will be nearest to the curb.

Slow down to road signs about animals. Australian roads have the presence of wildlife like kangaroos, wombats, koalas and even cattle that graze near the roadside

What Are NSW Road Rules?

Driving anywhere, not only in NSW, is all about road safety. Road safety entails rules and regulations in driving. What are these rules that you ought to know?

Check the following safety behaviour in driving.

  • On Alcohol and Driving

You are not allowed to drive if you are drunk. The Australian government imposes heavy penalties on drunk drivers. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can impair your ability to drive safely.

  • On Seatbelts and Kids

The seatbelt law is almost imperative in any place or country. Driving without seatbelts can propel you greatly when accidents happen. If you have children in the car, aged under 7 must be seated on a designated child car seat with restraint.

  • On Speed Limits

Always be on the lookout for posts on speed limits, which are strictly enforced on the road. Even without a sign, being aware of the speed limit will make you safer.

  • On Using Mobile Phones

With the age of modern technology, it is almost odd that not a single individual owns a smartphone. But whilst driving, keep your hands off the phone and focus on the road because phone use is one of the most common causes of car accidents.

  • On Driving in Remote Areas

Always check your itinerary and understand the place you are driving for. It is best to have complete emergency kits and tools. Awareness of the place, terrain or road type will compensate for your driving skill—if you have the talent to drive in tough driving conditions.

  • On Overtaking

Proper use of a mirror and checking your blind spots are vital in overtaking. Wait for obstructions to clear before overtaking. Use your judgement.

  • On Emergencies

Australia’s emergency number is 000. This is not hard to forget. Call this number so you can connect with the police, fire or ambulance. 

  • On Using Beams and Lights

According to the new road rules in Australia for 2022, drivers should also ensure that they turn on their front and rear fog lights when driving in fog, rain or other conditions. It also includes dust and smoke.

If you’re using high beam headlights, you should dip your headlights back to low beam once you see a vehicle approaching you within 200 metres. It’s also considered a violation to use a different light and dazzle oncoming drivers.

  • On Stopping on Posts

Drivers may get fined for halting within three metres of a public post office box, unless the driver briefly drops off or picks up a passenger. The law also forbids a driver to stop within one metre of a fire hydrant, fireplug indicator or a fire hydrant indicator.

  • On Using Your Horns

Never attempt to sit on your horn when you feel agitated about a traffic jam. That’s because it’s considered an offence to use any warning device, including horns, unless you want to warn others of your approaching vehicle.


What Is the Most Important Rule to Follow Whilst Driving? 

From the many Australian road rules in driving, we think they all boil down to safety. Considering safety as the primary reason why these rules are written in the first place is the best way to observe and implement safe road habits.

You need to keep 100% of your attention when you drive. It would help if you keep all possible distractions stashed somewhere whilst driving. Distracted driving law states that multi-tasking can cause you to get distracted whilst on the road. So, it’s best to keep all your gadgets inside your bag. 


What Are the Ten Basic Rules of Driving?

To sum it up, keep the following list for your reference. 

  1. Always drive at a safe speed. 
  2. Never drink whilst driving.
  3. Follow road rules.
  4. Always stay focused whilst on the road.
  5. Never let your emotions rule over, and don’t proceed when in doubt.
  6. Always plan your moves.
  7. Provide appropriate signals.
  8. Stay alert, especially at intersections.
  9. Know your vehicle.
  10. Always be courteous and considerate towards other road users.

Driving lessons, theoretical and practical, are a huge help in safe driving. But it does not guarantee expertise and complete safety when you don’t know the rules in a specific place.

Aside from knowing how many driving lessons are required, it would help if you consider other factors to ensure your safety whilst on the road. You can spend time looking for different rules specific to each state, aside from Sydney to ensure that you’re not missing out on anything.


Mardini Defence Lawyers: Defending You

If you need help with the drink driving law or any driving criminal offences in Australia, we can help you.

Mardini Defence Lawyers has been serving NSW for many years, and our team specialises in criminal defence. From crimes and traffic to appeals and bail, we can assist you. We represent our clients and guarantee that their rights are protected.

Feel free to contact us at (02) 8667-8292 or 0412-719-705 anytime.

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If you are facing a criminal charge, we urge you to contact us today to arrange a free initial consultation. No case is too big or too small.

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