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NZTA launches VR experience for learner drivers

The VR experience is an interactive drive through real New Zealand streets to help users spot hazards, check blind spots, and use mirrors, all from a virtual driver's seat. 

The free app is available for iOS and Android.

 Simon Gianott, ACC road injury prevention manager says, “This is truly a world-first in driver education.

“We spoke to hundreds of young Kiwis and we know that many of them feel daunted by practical driving tests.” 

“We also know drivers who are better at spotting hazards are safer drivers.” 

The most difficult group of drivers to reach are males aged 18 and 19, and they’re also some of the most at risk of serious injury.

Nothing replaces real-life practice but the VR experience helps young people practice their observation skills from the comfort of their own home. 

This is meant to give them more confidence behind the wheel.

The Drive team worked with Strategy Creative, Mixt and videographers Flying Saucer Films on the project.

For a more immersive experience, the Drive programme is giving away Google Cardboard VR headsets to drivers who sign up.

The Drive programme is a joint venture between ACC and The NZ Transport Agency, with the ultimate goal of creating safe and skilled young drivers.

Since launching on July 1st last year, the Drive programme has had more than 30,000 sign-ups and almost half a million total users who’ve completed 52,000 online road code chapter tests between them.

On average, users spend more than 12 minutes on the site, an almost unheard of engagement among the target demographic of young people.

The Drive VR app is available for iOS and Android now.

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