New in Driving News

Hello everyone and Welcome to the Elite Driving School Blog’s New in Driving News!

There has been a lot of Driving News lately, mainly, revolving around the weather!

However, last week, it was announced that Learner Drivers would be allowed on the motorways, with a qualified Driving Instructor, as of the 4th June 2018!

I have both good and points for the debate of Learner Drivers being allowed on motorways…

Let’s get all the negativity out of the way, and start with the cons:

-Motorways are dangerous if going both too fast, or too slow. Going too slow on a Motorway can cause serious problems, and can be very dangerous, which is why generally, it is better to do when more competent.

-Realistically, in an average hour/hour and a half lesson, the Learner isn’t going to get very far, before having to turn around and come back home. It is going to be extremely difficult for those who don’t live anywhere near a motorway, to have a motorway lesson as a learner…right?

-Thy’re unreliable. This shouldn’t be too difficult to explain, but sometimes, for unforeseen circumstances, you can get stuck on the motorway for hours. I’m sure we have all been there. Just last week, people were stuck on the M62 for 15 hours, after a mass crash. – Could you imagine being stuck in a car for 15 hours with your instructor?

-The other road users. You can sometimes get people, who get a little ‘speed happy’ and tend to just zoom off, well over the speed limit. This of course is annoying to general road users, never mind learners, who haven’t even passed a test to determine if they are ready to drive safely or not. I can imagine it being quite scary.

-They’re unqualified. Sure, they’re with a qualified instructor, who can drive at an advanced level, and in a car with dual controls, but that doesn’t prevent the fact that they’re unqualified. And yes, I understand the point of this is to become qualified, but people generally learn or go on a motorway, after they have experienced driving on their own on A and B roads.

Okay. Now, for the Pro’s:

-It allows the learner to advance on the skills that they already have, to be able to assess the situation appropriately.

-It allows learners to be experienced on all roads, before becoming qualified.

-With the new ‘Smart Motorways’ it enables learners to be more aware of how they work, as they won’t be involved in the Theory test.

-It gives them an advanced knowledge, meaning that there could potentially be fewer ‘new driver’ accidents.

 

What do you think?

We would love to hear your thoughts on the subject, as I think it is such a controversial one.

– The Elite Team

 

Why Learning to Drive at the Age of 17 is Better

It’s quite normal now for the younger generation to learn to drive as soon as they can. It is actually a really good idea. So, if you are 17, or are wanting to get someone driving lessons, here are some reasons why learning to drive when your younger, is easier.

It has been found in recent studies that learning is significantly easier for younger people, rather than in older years. The brain is a lot more capable of learning when younger, meaning that it is learning new things, such as driving is considerable easier and less frustrating.

Because Driving is a new skill, it requires a lot of patience and time and effort, but also a lot of concentration.

Meaning that the younger generation are going to require less concentration, and patience, because their brain is more capable of learning, unlike someone in their late twenties, and thirties and so on.

Obviously, it depends on the person, and their own personal and mental development, but generally it is easier for younger people to absorb information.

This means that passing driving and theory tests can be substantially quicker, and better, which means that more money is saved throughout the process, making it more cost-effective to learn to drive at the age of 17 than a novice at the age of 35.

Moreover, even if you can’t afford to get a car at the age of 17, the skills have been learnt meaning that refreshing your memory later on in life, when you can afford a car, is a lot easier than starting from scratch. It’s very similar to the saying ‘You Never forget how to ride a bike’.

It’s considerably the same thing, as most people to learn to ride a bike at a very young age, meaning that the skills learnt are more likely to stay stored in the brain.

But of course it is never too late to start to learn to drive. The freedom gained at the end of it will not differ, and the experience of lessons will not change.

 

Driving Test Changes You Need to Know About

If you didn’t know already, the UK driving test is changing from the 4th December 2017 (not a very nice Christmas present, is it?). We are updating you with the most recent changes made by the DVSA.

It was released on the 13th September 2017, that there would be revised changes to the ‘Show me’ ‘Tell me’ portion of the test.

If you don’t know what this is, it is where the examiner will ask you a ‘show me’ question and a ‘tell me’ question at the beginning of your driving test. These questions are given to you by your instructor to prepare you for your test.

The ‘Tell me’ Questions are as follows:

1. Tell me how you’d check that the brakes are working before starting a journey.

Brakes should not feel spongy or slack. Brakes should be tested as you set off. Vehicle should not pull to one side.

Manufacturer’s guide, use a reliable pressure gauge, check and adjust pressures when tyres are cold, don’t forget spare tyre, remember to refit valve caps.

3. Tell me how you make sure your head restraint is correctly adjusted so it provides the best protection in the event of a crash.

The head restraint should be adjusted so the rigid part of the head restraint is at least as high as the eye or top of the ears, and as close to the back of the head as is comfortable. Note: Some restraints might not be adjustable.

4. Tell me how you’d check the tyres to ensure that they have sufficient tread depth and that their general condition is safe to use on the road.

No cuts and bulges, 1.6mm of tread depth across the central three-quarters of the breadth of the tyre, and around the entire outer circumference of the tyre.

5. Tell me how you’d check that the headlights and tail lights are working. You don’t need to exit the vehicle.

Explain you’d operate the switch (turn on ignition if necessary), then walk round vehicle (as this is a ‘tell me’ question, you don’t need to physically check the lights).

6. Tell me how you’d know if there was a problem with your anti-lock braking system.

Warning light should illuminate if there is a fault with the anti-lock braking system.

7. Tell me how you’d check the direction indicators are working. You don’t need to exit the vehicle.

Explain you’d operate the switch (turn on ignition if necessary), and then walk round vehicle (as this is a ‘tell me’ question, you don’t need to physically check the lights).

8. Tell me how you’d check the brake lights are working on this car.

Explain you’d operate the brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows or doors, or ask someone to help.

9. Tell me how you’d check the power-assisted steering is working before starting a journey.

If the steering becomes heavy, the system may not be working properly. Before starting a journey, 2 simple checks can be made.

Gentle pressure on the steering wheel, maintained while the engine is started, should result in a slight but noticeable movement as the system begins to operate. Alternatively turning the steering wheel just after moving off will give an immediate indication that the power assistance is functioning.

10. Tell me how you’d switch on the rear fog light(s) and explain when you’d use it/them. You don’t need to exit the vehicle.

Operate switch (turn on dipped headlights and ignition if necessary). Check warning light is on. Explain use.

11. Tell me how you switch your headlight from dipped to main beam and explain how you’d know the main beam is on.

Operate switch (with ignition or engine on if necessary), check with main beam warning light.

12. Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that the engine has sufficient oil.

Identify dipstick/oil level indicator, describe check of oil level against the minimum and maximum markers.

13. Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that the engine has sufficient engine coolant.

Identify high and low level markings on header tank where fitted or radiator filler cap, and describe how to top up to correct level.

14. Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that you have a safe level of hydraulic brake fluid.

Identify reservoir, check level against high and low markings.

 

And the ‘Show me’ questions:

  1. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you wash and clean the rear windscreen?
  2. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you wash and clean the front windscreen?
  3. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you’d switch on your dipped headlights?
  4. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you’d set the rear demister?
  5. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you’d operate the horn?
  6. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you’d demist the front windscreen?
  7. When it’s safe to do so, can you show me how you’d open and close the side window?

 

Now with the changes to the Driving Test, it means that the ‘tell me’ questions will be asked at the beginning of the test, and the ‘show me’ questions will now be asked during the driving test, whilst under their examination.

However, do not fret, the changes are not made until the 4th December, so you have plenty of time to figure how to undertake these ‘show me’s’ in your instructors car.

We hope this helps and we will keep you updated with any more changes to the UK Driving Test on the Elite Blog, so make sure to follow Elite on Social Media, so you can be updated with any Driving Test changes coming your way by December!

The Elite Team

What Is The Best Way To Learn To Drive?

The Best Way To Learn To Drive

The best way to learn to drive is to book two to three regular weekly lessons and the ideal driving lesson time should be 90 minutes.

To get you started ask for recommendations, read reviews and make sure you book lessons with a credible instructor.

From the very start book your Theory Test in advance and practice each day for 30-60 minutes. Knowledge is important to help you learn quickly.

Make sure that you use recommended study material from either the DVSA or Theory Test pro.

Ask questions from your instructor if you don’t understand something you’re being taught or if you feel you’re not getting the results you expect.

Once you’ve passed your Theory Test prebook your driving test in advance but before you do make sure you talk to your instructor about a suitable date and get them to make you responsible for achieving the goal.

Before each lesson read any notes that your instructor has given you, be on time for lessons and be reliable. Missing lessons will hinder your progress.

Ask your instructor for permission to email any questions you have in between lessons so they can be answered before your next lesson.

If you can get extra practice ask your instructor to talk to the person giving you the practice and advise them on what they should focus on to help your progress.

If you can’t get extra practice – every time you’re a passenger in a car start by watching out for hazards and dangers in the road ahead, above all immerse yourself in a safe driver culture and make sure you regularly study the Highway Code.

#thebestwaytolearntodrive

Learning to Drive Successfully

Learning to drive successfully involves making decisions…

When you are learning to drive at some stage you will have to start making your own decisions otherwise you’ll never be confident driving yourself.
There will be times when something happens and you won’t know what to do. But if you learn to rely on your own judgement you’ll find that you can make sensible safe decisions.
Take the picture below for example.

Crossing

What’s on your mind…Question Do I go or stop?
At the crossing is a young cyclist intent on riding across the road, the driver has made a late decision to stop – this is possibly because he was indecisive, or wasn’t paying attention.
The result could be that following traffic was also caught out and had to also stop suddenly putting people in danger, or the pedestrian had the fright of their life or worse still hit by the driver.
Let’s look at the three choices
Stop
Go
Don’t know
Now let’s look at the situation again.
Would you say it’s quite obvious that the cyclist is intending to ride to the other side of the road using the crossing?
What are the rules for a zebra crossing, is it a shared responsibility where pedestrians waits for a driver to stop and let them cross safely, and drivers should be aware that pedestrian are waiting for a safe opportunity to cross?
In your opinion do you think people at a zebra crossing take it for granted that drivers will stop, and that some force that issue by walking out regardless of a drivers intention?
So in the picture do you think the cyclist will ride on to the crossing without thought for the driver, Yes? Then the only logical choice is to first recognise the situation early enough and stop giving way to the pedestrian.
To help you with make the right decisions, make sure you understand the rules of the road, by reading the highway code. Be vigilant when driving and always ask yourself the “What if” question.
Happy safe driving

Don’t Lose Your Licence

Del Boy Driving Licence

You’ve worked hard to gain your licence with Elite.

What happens if within the first two years of gaining your licence you get 6 points on it?

 

Your first two years of gaining your licence is a probationary period and if you get 6 points on it, your licence will be revoked. This means that you will have to pay and apply for a new provisional licence and pay and pass both your theory and practical driving tests to once again get a full licence.

 

It is also worth a mention that the new law which was brought in on the 1st March 2017 means that motorists caught using a mobile phone whilst driving are liable to 6 points on their licence plus a £200.00 fine.

 

Our advice is to stick to the speed limits and put your mobile phones out of reach whilst driving to eliminate any temptation to pick them up, why go through all that hard work to gain your licence, to have it taken away again and then have to start all over again.

 

#drivinglicence #safety

How to Apply for Your Provisional Driving Licence

Mr Bean Fake Provisional Licence

How to Apply for Your Provisional Driving Licence

Before you can get in the driver’s seat, you need a provisional driving licence. You can’t use this until you’re 17, but you can apply for it when you are 15 years and 9 months old, this will enable you to ride a moped at 16 years old or a light quad bike or drive a car when you are 17 years old.
 
There are two ways you get your licence. You can apply online via the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA), to do this you can click here, the cost to apply online is currently £34 this usually takes up to a week for your licence to arrive.
The second way you can apply is to get an application form (Form D1) from the Post Office, to apply by post is currently £43 and postal applications usually take up to 3 weeks for your licence to arrive.
For more information on applying for your First Provisional Licence click here
#provisionaldrivinglicence

The Quote

Grandpa Pabbie

The Quote

As we head into Spring with the hope of good weather, it might be nice to reflect on where you are in your journey of learning to drive and how far you’ve already come.

Of course you might not have actually got started yet, but can’t wait for the day you can.

But for those who are already on their journey you might be looking ahead and dreaming of the possibilities when you’ve passed your test.

Of course you may be thinking right now “But I’m no further ahead than I was last month…..” or even worse: “But I’ve gone backwards……!”

Well if that’s the case, I have hope for you. As Grandpa Pabbie says in the Disney blockbuster FROZEN:

“The heart is not so easily changed, but the head can be persuaded.”

I’m assuming your heart is in the right place (you want to drive right, so why wouldn’t it be). So the head is where the work will need to be done to give you the shift you need to get you to test standard. In fact it’s absolutely key to making the right decisions you need to become a safe driver.

Think about it this way. If there was a simple formula, we wouldn’t need driving instructors.

So success in driving is all about getting the right mindset and the right instructor to help you succeed.

And we can help you with the later…….

“To your success.”

#saferdriver