Driving Instructors - thallium81
Are there any currently qualified driving instructors viewing this excellent site? If so do you attempt to instruct your pupils in the art of signalling to inform other road users of their intentions?
I ask because I am increasingly coming across drivers who appear to think that they are the sole users of the road; namely, failure to use direction indicators even when turning right across oncoming traffic,failure to make proper (or any) use of headlights in poor visibility or at night and complete disregard for convention when using roundabouts. There have always been the odd madman and silly old flatcap to contend with but I am seeing far more sloppy driving than I used to. Instructing novices should entail more than the mechanics of car control. If you don't already, why not suggest to your learners that they read the Highway Code once a year?
That little rant has done me good after a very hectic day. ;-))
Driving Instructors - Adam {P}
Tom Shaw's your man for this.
Driving Instructors - thallium81
Thanks Adam, I'll await his reply with trepidation.
Driving Instructors - Robin Reliant
Of course driving instructors don't teach their pupils all that highway Code nonsense like indicating. We just tell them to do all that silly stuff till they pass their tests, then they can go out and drive like normal people. You know, tailgating, running red lights, ignoring pedestrian crossings, passing close enough to cyclists so you can leave a line of dust on their elbows, screaming abuse at slower drivers, etc.

What do you think the Pass Plus is for? They need that to get them out of all those wimpish habits you had to get them to do to fool the examiner.

That's one of the things I miss since I packed up instructing, the feeling that I was making a real contribution to driver education.
Driving Instructors - thallium81
Nice reply Tom; do I detect a smidgeon of sarcasm? As you are not a current instructor I am sure none of the bad habits you list are your responsibility. Anyway most of us seem to survive the daily mangle of the roads, thank heavens.
Driving Instructors - thallium81
What was it that the old Volvo advert said when a hippopotamus sat on the bonnet of an aged 940? It's a jungle out there.
Driving Instructors - carl_a
Most of the driving instructors i've seen are pretty good, I saw one today however that was smoking in her car. Glad there will be laws coming in to stop that soon.
Driving Instructors - Robin Reliant
I packed up two years ago, thallium.

Everything that needs to be instilled into learners to put them on the road to becomming good drivers is, but unfortunately what they decide to do after the test is down to them alone. I am sure that any young whippersnappers like Adam will confirm that following the basic rules like indicating, lane discipline and wearing seatbelts is seen as "uncool" by the more chavlike members of the youth movement, and any one of that number would face the jeers of his mates for driving as dictated in the Highway Code.

An unfortunate state, but one that replacing traffic police with cameras does nothing to address.
Driving Instructors - David Horn
I agree with Tom, but an important point is that not many people take Pass Plus. I didn't, though I don't think I'm any the worse for it.

Remember that most of the new drivers on a motorway have never been on anything other than a dual carriageway with a 40mph limit, and so have no idea of lane disciple or forward planning on motorways.

I had the good fortune to be able to practice on the A38 Devon Expressway near Plymouth, where the road is virtually identical to a busy motorway (ie, three lanes, 70 limit with everyone doing 80...)

The thing I notice the most on motorways is new drivers sitting at 60mph in the middle lane looking absolutely terrified and sitting about 3 inches from the steering wheel.
Driving Instructors - Robin Reliant
On the subject of yoof...

Driving through the local town a few weeks ago, I was passed by one of those new Peugeots with the sliding doors (207?). The nearside door was open and the passenger was doing the usual "look at me, I'm cool routine", one foot on the dash and his hand holding onto the A pillar.

The driver braked for a roundabout. The car slowed, the door didn't.

I had to pull in, I was choking with laughter so much I coudn't drive for about five minutes.
Driving Instructors - thallium81
You have hit the nail on the head Tom: youth versus age, I was a dreadful, dangerous driver in my teens so no need to be superior now I suppose.
Driving Instructors - PhilDews
I remember passing my test some 9 years ago. The same day I passed I drove on the motorway from South Leeds to Pontefract. The day after that I drove from Leeds to Hartlepool, around 150ml round trip. The next week I had my motorway lesson...

But I know what you mean when you get the numpties sitting on an emptyish motorway at 60 in the middle lane.

However, saw the perfect example of inattentive driving today. Leaving the M6 North to go onto the M5, I noticed an unmarked police car with full blues/reds on and pulled over. The van in front of me failed to see police car for over a mile, despite policecar pulling right over, blue lights on, headlights flashing, still couldn't get past the van....
------------------------------------------------
Drive Your Way - If anything can, TerraCan
-----
Driving Instructors - Sofa Spud
Neons and foglights are the new indicators. It's just not cool to indicate in a chavmobile.
Driving Instructors - bell boy
this non indicating is not the sole preserve of young people though, it seems to be coming a national pastime, what gets me is all these people who dont practise it are probably the same people to give one fingered gestures if you make any genuine mistake that hinders their motoring travels.
--
\"a little man in a big world/\"
Driving Instructors - L'escargot
this non indicating is not the sole preserve of young people
though, it seems to be coming a national pastime,


I find it's just the opposite. Most people seem to indicate at every possible opportunity purely out of habit, with no concious thought. In a large percentage of cases the indication is of no value whatsoever to man nor beast. It makes me wonder if they are at all aware of what (if anything!) is around them.
--
L\'escargot.
Driving Instructors - Statistical outlier
After some thought, I now tend to indicate even when there is nobody around, or when I'm not sure it's completely necessary. It's not so much that I think I need to, it's more that if I'm in the habit, then I'll always do it automatically without having to think about it. 99% of the time I would hope that I'm awake enough that it doesn't matter, but being in the habit of always checking the mirrors and then indicating will hopefully keep things safer.

Of course I do try to just pay attention, but...

Gord.
Driving Instructors - trancer
" After some thought, I now tend to indicate even when there is nobody around, or when I'm not sure it's completely necessary. "

Such actions would lead to a minor on your driving test. As it was explained, if you indicate when there is no-one around to see it then it means that you are not aware of your surroundings or something to that effect.

If you don't know when you should indicate then you may need to re-sit your test completely.

That last bit wasn't meant to be seriously directed at you, but that was the stance my instructor told me the examiners would take if I used the indicators frivolously.
Driving Instructors - Statistical outlier
I know, I *would* get a minor, it's absolutely incorrect driving.

But.

I'm not doing it as I'm unaware of my surroundings, nor because I don't know when I need to indicate. I'm doing it because if it's an instinctive thing that I always so, then I won't forget to when I'm in mental London traffic, trying to see five ways at once, getting cut up and having people pushing in, and generally getting horribly distracted.

It's incorrect driving, but I can't see the harm, and it might help. I'd be fascinated to re-take in some ways. I'd have to modify the above and my steering technique, but I hope that the rest hasn't changed much in the last 13 (!!) years.
Driving Instructors - Statistical outlier
Oh, also, it's quite fun indicating correctly in central London, especially on major roundabouts and the like. People aren't used to it and it freaks them out. :-)
Driving Instructors - Lud
Quite right GM. Harmless to signal unnecessarily, dangerous not to signal when it's necessary.

Lot of people get it wrong at roundabouts though. Look fussy, or as if they aren't sure which way theyre going.
Driving Instructors - Bill Payer
" After some thought, I now tend to indicate even when
there is nobody around, or when I'm not sure it's completely
necessary. "
Such actions would lead to a minor on your driving test.
As it was explained, if you indicate when there is
no-one around to see it then it means that you are
not aware of your surroundings or something to that effect.
If you don't know when you should indicate then you may
need to re-sit your test completely.
That last bit wasn't meant to be seriously directed at you,
but that was the stance my instructor told me the examiners
would take if I used the indicators frivolously.

There's a difference between frivolous indicating and not indicating (where you normally should) because there's no-one around.
Our advance driving trainers at work disagree on this, but they generally tend towards indicating even when there's no-one around. Issue is, if that someone suddenly appears (at a road junction etc) then you're grabbing for the indicator in more of a panic than would have been necessary if you'd simply indicated in the first place. Plus of course, it's extra insurance just in case there is someone around and you haven't seen them.
Driving Instructors - davemar
Who's to say the driver saw someone who would have benefitted from an indication which the instructor didn't see? I get really hacked off as a pedestrian when crossing a side road when a car doesn't indicate and turns acrorss me. They probably thought "there's no other cars around so I don't need to indicate"; but I was around, but on foot, so would have really liked you to have done so.
If you just instinctively indicate in the correct manner, it's not going to be to the detriment or harm of anyone else. Why waste valuable concentration energy on whether to indicate or not, when you should be thinking far more about what's going on around you?
Indicating correctly when no-one is around is not going to affect anyone. Not indicating when someone might be around who you haven't spotted might do.

You don't think "I'm unlikely to see a police car today, and I'm not going to crash, so I won't bother with the seatbelt". You just instinctively put it on. Doing so doesn't cost you anything, so why not do it, even if on 99.9% of occasions it isn't needed?

Driving Instructors - artful dodger {P}
Do not always blame the pupil. Recently I have seen 2 different driving instructors setting bad examples to other road users. On both occassions neither had a pupil in the car.

The first one was driving fast along a twisty country road with a 40 mph speed limit in dense fog with no lights on at all.

The second had cleared 2 inches of snow off the windscreen to make a large pile on the bonnet that was partly obstructing his forward vision.

So with instructors like these around to set "good" examples, why do we expect others to perfect.


--
Roger
I read frequently, but only post when I have something useful to say.
 

Ask Honest John

Value my car