How to Stay Safe on the Road after your Test
By AdFeatures | Wednesday, January 30, 2013, 13:44
Preparing for your driving test can be a little bit nerve-wracking, even for people who are normally cool, calm and collected. It takes a lot of work (and can cost a significant amount of money) to pass both the theory and practical test in order to get your license; research from the DSA suggests that most people need 60+ hours of preparation before they can pass. It can be a stressful process. You’ll have organised your new drivers car insurance, so you’ll know that you’re legally covered when practicing but also for when you have passed. However, once you’ve passed your test, you’re suddenly out there, on the roads... on your own!
The most important thing to remember when you start driving independently after having passed your test is that you would not have been given a license if your examiner didn’t think you were fit to drive. The pass rate for driving tests in the UK usually hangs just below the 50% mark – they’re obviously not shy about failing people who aren’t up to scratch. While you may lack real road experience and the confidence that comes with many years of driving, you will have the benefit of having a really good understanding of the Highway Code and the theory behind driving. And, providing that you’ve had a good instructor, you shouldn’t have picked up any of the bad habits which can often develop over time following driving lessons.
The majority of drivers stick to trips of less than 10 miles for their first solo trip, and most sources advise that new drivers travel on routes they are familiar with for the first couple of outings. This will mean that you’re not going to be distracted by trying to navigate and can concentrate on your road positioning and hazard perception. After you’ve got the first solo drive safely out of the way and have finished celebrating your new-found freedom and autonomy, there are a few things you should remember as you begin to drive more frequently.
Make sure that you’re confident driving by yourself before you agree to give your friends lifts. Passengers can be a big distraction for new drivers, and minimizing distraction is key to driving safely. That’s why you should wait a while before you start driving with the radio on or music playing, and when you do begin to use your car’s sound system, keep the volume low.
If you’re hesitant about any aspect of driving, you can take some Pass Plus classes. Pass Plus covers a variety of driving experiences you won’t have had to deal with in your preparation for your test, including driving at night and on the motorway. Pass Plus is designed to help you minimise your chances of being involved in an accident, and this is reflected by a number of insurance companies which offer reduced premiums for those who have gone through Pass Plus’s 6+ hours of additional tuition.
Driving can be very enjoyable, and there’s no need to worry about it provided that you drive safely. Drivers within their first two years of holding a license are more likely to be involved in accidents than other drivers, and have a smaller penalty points threshold on their license, making them more likely to have their licenses taken away if they break the law.
The Co-operative Insurance
Ensure that you cover yourself on the road with an insurance policy that handles any eventuality, like Co-op Young Driver Insurance. Hit by large premiums? The Co-op can fit a small black box to your car which rewards those who drive in a safe, considerate manner.