Many driv­ers with just ba­sic skills

Solihull News - - LETTERS & EMAILS -

HAVE you been held up at traf­fic lights be­cause they failed to change, or been nearly hit by driv­ers cut­ting across the in­side lane when turn­ing right or fail­ing to ac­tu­ally in­di­cate where they are go­ing on turns and is­lands? I bet that you have at some time in your life.

Why do th­ese hap­pen? I sus­pect most, if not all, new driv­ers are ‘ taught’ to drive in a short pe­riod of time and are taught just enough to get them through their test. If they pass then they still are not com­pe­tent as driv­ing cor­rectly takes time in my opin­ion.

The rea­son for the hold- up at traf­fic lights is due to driv­ers fail­ing to stop on the line. The lights have de­tec­tors un­der the road sur­face to de­tect any metal ob­ject ( car, mo­tor- cy­cle or cy­cle) wait­ing at the lights.

Fail­ing to stop on the line means that the traf­fic light con­trols do not know that you are there and at cer­tain lights like the Coleshill Road/ Vic­to­ria Road in Sut­ton for one, they then omit one di­rec­tion. So stop on the line at traf­fic lights and do not hold up other traf­fic.

An­other dan­ger­ous pro­ce­dure re­gard­ing lines is at junc­tions. In my day you pulled up to the line but now it seems that you pull up a car length away. Why is this dan­ger­ous? Well firstly, you can­not nec­es­sar­ily see cor­rectly both di­rec­tions of traf­fic, if there is a bend then you have no way of see­ing an on­com­ing ve­hi­cle. Sec­ondly, be­cause you are way off the line, when you start to move for­ward it takes time and that ve­hi­cle you could not see is now on top of you. I sus­pect that this is ac­tu­ally caused by the id­iots who when turn­ing right ac­tu­ally man­age to do so on the in­side lane of the road of which they are turn­ing into.

It also seems that us­ing in­di­ca­tors is some­thing that ei­ther the driver does not think about, can’t be both­ered to do or maybe cars are not fit­ted with them ( ha ha).

At is­lands no­body in­di­cates any more. This is prob­a­bly be­cause they have never been taught to do so. You do need to in­di­cate at is­lands. The cor­rect way is to in­di­cate right up to the exit be­fore the one you want, then in­di­cate left. This lets ev­ery­one know what you are do­ing and it helps to pre­vent ac­ci­dents caused by driv­ers not know­ing where other driv­ers are go­ing.

It is about time that all driv­ing in­struc­tors, com­mer­cial or par­ents, were made to take the IAM Ad­vanced Test yearly to keep them up- to- date and have their cer­ti­fi­ca­tion re­moved un­til they can ac­tu­ally pass it. This also goes for Driv­ing Test Ex­am­in­ers, who must clamp down on the poor driv­ing stan­dards of a large num­ber of road users.

Pass­ing the test just pro­duces driv­ers with lit­tle ba­sic knowl­edge. It takes time and rep­e­ti­tion to pro­duce safe driv­ers and some may never make it due to be­ing in­volved in se­ri­ous ac­ci­dents.

Do not think that the emer­gency ser­vices are im­mune ei­ther be­cause they are not. They are cer­tainly bet­ter than av­er­age yes, but even they still have prob­lems. Ad­vanced driver, by email

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