Changes to the Highway Code

From January 29 th 2022 changes are being made to the Highway Code that will affect every person in the country. When turning left if a pedestrian is waiting to cross the road then road users will have to give way to them. This is going to cause injury and deaths to pedestrians for the following reasons. 1. When giving way to the pedestrian vehicles approaching from the pedestrians right may not see them and collide with them, 2. the pedestrian may know the new rule but the vehicle driver may not and the pedestrian could walk straight into a collision with the vehicle. 3. As the pedestrians get used to vehicles giving way they will walk straight into the road expecting vehicles to stop for them, as many pedestrians do not wait until it is safe at zebra crossings. Add to this the extra fumes going into the atmosphere because of vehicles ticking over whilst waiting for the pedestrians to cross and the rear end crashes that will inevitably occur i am of the opinion that this Highway Code change is ill thought out and it smacks of a jobsworth seeing to be doing something. This ridiculous idea needs to be scrapped before it starts. Pedestrians are better off being left to their own judgement as to wether it is safe to cross the road.

Cyclists are going to be encouraged to ride in the middle of the lane and were there are two cyclists ride two abreast, who the hell thought this one up, obviously someone who cant drive!!! can you imagine the oncoming vehicles in your lane as they overtake dangerously its bad enough now god knows how many crashes these new rules will create. As with the so called smart motorways which have been postponed awaiting reports of the safety of theses stupid roads i wonder just how many pedestrians, cyclists, drivers will have to be maimed or die before the powers that be see sense. i wont hold my breath.

Appropriate Speed

What does the term Appropriate Speed mean to you ??

I think this is a question we should all ask ourselves, what it should mean is : Am i driving at a speed which enables me to not only see everything thats happening in front of me but am i able to stop in plenty of time if i need to, given the situation on the road and my surroundings ?

You cant put a number in mph on appropriate speed, always ask yourself the above question and adjust your speed as necessary.

Scan the road as you drive including the pavements moving your eyes from left to right, also imagine your windscreen has a halfway horizontal line through it, above the line is the future because we need to look as far ahead as possible, and below the line is the present, which is what is happening in front of the car right now. If you practice this method of observation you will be ready for anything always.

Beware the potholes dont take all of your attention, the roads are in a diabolical state at the moment so slow right down and pick your safest route through the rubble observing all the time and you hopefully wont damage your car or worse.

The winter will be upon us soon so practice Appropriate Speed and all will be well, it is not speed that kills, it is inappropriate speed that kills.

Road surfaces

As you will have already realised, probably to your cost, the roads in Sussex and the UK generally are in an extremely bad way due to the lack of maintenance despite costing motorists thousands per year in , road tax, fuel duty, VAT, council tax etc. I find it strange that driving skills have to be extremely good to pass the driving test, our cars have to be checked at an MOT station every year, so are we all safe ? of course not we have to be good drivers, have safe cars, be insured all these rules laid down by government, and quite right too. Then why are we given unsafe and dangerous roads to drive on ? I find it ironic that we are in this situation, ive always said there are no dangerous roads only dangerous drivers that is until now. We should be looking as far ahead as possible when we drive which most people know, however there are so many potholes now and they are very deep that you need to be looking in front of the car as well so much so that is the only place some drivers are looking resulting crashes. I can only suggest writing to the county council and your MP not just once but every week until they get sick and tired of the same thing. What else can we do? suggestions please.

Bullying Drivers

Some drivers of 4×4 vehicles especially the very large ones lately seem to just bulldoze their way through meeting traffic situations as if it is their god given right to do so, they seem to act as if they always have right of way and us mere mortals have to wait for them. This is basically bullying and for the driver at the sharp ed of the bully boys and girls i might add it is not nice and they feel extremely vulnerable especially learner drivers. If you are one of these moronic drivers please take a lesson or 2 from a professional instructor and get your road manners back into shape because at the moment you are a real danger to everybody else.

Winter Driving

Another winter is upon us with the usual risks, however this year the risks seem greatly worse than normal in the form of potholes, roads breaking up and crumbling away at the sides in the centre in fact all over a lot of our roads. I saw a comment on Face book recently it said : At one time we used to drive on the left, we now drive on the parts of the road that are left. Says it all really don,t you think?

Be extremely careful out there this winter especially in the dark afternoons and evenings as another problem is raising its ugly head again, the lack of white lines. The white lines are wearing out at an alarming rate and are not being replaced so if you are in an unfamiliar area take a bit more time to make sure you are in the correct position on the road, look for roundabouts, mini roundabout markings have all but disappeared in my town (Hastings) i witnessed three separate occasions last week cars treating a mini roundabout as a T junction and consequently three near misses obviously those drivers should have taken more care but we all know some drivers are simply not paying attention but had the roundabout been more clearly marked then i,m sure these incidents would not have occurred.

I wrote to Rupert Clubb who is in charge of transport at East Sussex county council pointing out the details i have already stated here, some 14 days later i received a letter back from him without even a mention of white lines, so much for a caring county council with road safety staying at the bottom of their priorities. Why not email Rupert Clubb at east sussex county council, bombard him with complaints about white lines and pot holes and the lack of any road maintenance and see if we can get him to at least have a look at the awful state of our roads these days, but dont, hold your breath.

Summmer Driving

With summer on its way it is a great time to start your driving lessons windows down shades on and away we go.

For experienced drivers with hang ups like parking, overtaking fears now is a good time to get in touch and brush up those driving skills.

Learner drivers on motorways legal from 4th June 2018

Learner drivers are to be allowed on motorways from 4th June this year. Good decision or bad decision time will only tell.

There are a few good instructors out there whom i know will be very careful indeed as to evaluate when their pupil is ready for motorway training.

However there are a LOT of bad instructors who will see this as a bit of a jolly in other words a 3 or 4 hour lesson driving in a straight line. Some instructors will allow themselves to be persuaded to taking the pupil on to the motorway when the pupil is no where ready for it, thats going to be a potential problem.

In my opinion and of other professional instructors this should not be happening, what should happen is the pass plus training programme should become compulsory  instead of voluntary say within a year of passing the driving test.

 

What do you think???

 

New driving test changes

From the 4th December the driving test will change, no longer will the test candidate have to demonstrate the turn in the road or reverse around a corner although good instructors will still

teach these skills as they enhance reversing skills and enable drivers to turn the car around. The candidate will now be  expected to be able to drive or reverse into a parking bay either between the white lines or between two cars and reverse out safely. You may be asked to parallel park or  you may be asked to pull up on the  right safely reverse back two car lengths and drive on. These are the manoeuvres that are tested however only one will be demonstrated in the driving test.

The show me tell me questions are changing in as much as you will be required to demonstrate operating one or more switches on the move.

These changes are nothing to worry about as indeed as a driver you should be able to carry the tasks out with ease.

White Lines

You may have noticed how the road markings are slowly but surely disappearing from our roads due to wear and tear. It is obvious that the

county council either do not know, and do not care that as a result of this wear and tear our roads are becoming more dangerous day by day.

Take for example give way lines especially at crossroads a driver may think they have the right of way causing a crash. When i am teaching now i tell

the pupil to look for the remnants of the give way lines, the road markings were put on the roads for a reason in the first place so why are they allowed to wear out

making our roads more dangerous? your guess is as good as mine.

Learner drivers to have motorway lessons

Take a look and read this, why voluntary. The reason is because some people do not live near a motorway. Can you believe that, this is no excuse, if my tyres are worn out i cant make the excuse, i don,t live near a garage. It is obvious that the government do not care a hoot about road safety if they did our roads would be in better condition, lines and road markings would be kept up to date etc etc i could go on and on.

A motorway course should be mandatory post driving test/, end of story that way ALL our drivers will have been trained on motorways which i admit are the safest roads to drive on in the country

BUT and its a big But only if you know what you are doing, if it goes wrong then many people could be KILLED or MAIMED in one incident

Learner drivers will be allowed to have driving lessons on motorways with a driving instructor in a car fitted with dual controls.

Learner drivers will be able to take driving lessons on motorways before passing their driving test under new plans set out today (30 December 2016) by Transport Minister Andrew Jones.

At the moment, you can only have driving lessons on motorways after you’ve passed your driving test. Some newly-qualified drivers take lessons through the voluntary Pass Plus scheme.

Voluntary motorway lessons with a qualified instructor

Under the new plans, learner drivers would need to be:

  • accompanied by an approved driving instructor
  • driving a car fitted with dual controls

Any motorways lessons would be voluntary. It would be up to the driving instructor to decide when the learner driver is competent enough to have a motorway lesson.

Note from me: Why voluntary? make these lessons compulsory, otherwise whats the point some young people will have motorway knowledge but most of other young drivers still will not.

Any change to the law would be well-publicised before coming into effect. Until then, it’s still illegal for a learner driver to drive on a motorway.

Driving instructor training and vehicles

The Department for Transport is also asking for views on whether:

  • the current driving instructor training and testing system gives instructors the skills they need to provide motorway lessons to learner drive
  • specially-adapted vehicles must be fitted with dual controls if they’re used for motorway lessons
  • L plate roofboxes on cars must be removed before a motorway lesson

Have your say on the proposals by 17 February 2017.

Better prepared for a lifetime of safe driving

Allowing learner drivers to have lessons on motorways will help to make sure more drivers know how to use motorways safely.

Note from me: Correction!!!!! only very few will have these skills because motorway lessons are still VOLUNTARY.

The changes will allow learner drivers to:

  • get broader driving experience before taking their driving test
  • get training on how to join and leave the motorway, overtake and use lanes correctly
  • practice driving at higher speeds
  • put their theoretical knowledge into practice
  • Note from me: Only if they have the lessons!!!!!!

Right skills and understanding

The proposed changes will help to contribute towards the government’s commitment to reduce the number of people killed and seriously injured on our roads, and ensure safer journeys.

Transport Minister, Andrew Jones, said:

We have some of the safest roads in the world and we want to make them even safer.

Note from me : Is that why 17 to 24 year olds only drive 6% of the total miles driven in this country but are involved in 15 yes 15% of all accidents.

These changes will equip learners with a wider range of experience and greater skill set which will improve safety levels on our roads.

Note from me No they will not all the time it is voluntary, its as they say a NO BRAINER.

RAC Foundation Director, Steve Gooding, said:

The casualty statistics tell us that motorways are our safest roads, but they can feel anything but safe to a newly qualified driver heading down the slip road for the first time to join a fast moving, often heavy, flow of traffic.

Many are so intimidated by the motorway environment that they choose instead to use statistically more dangerous roads, so we welcome this move which will help new drivers get the training they need to use motorways safely.

Note from me: ALL THE MORE REASON TO MAKE IT COMPULSORY THEN