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Under 17’s Driving Lessons

 In Motoring, News, Road Safety

In the UK we all know that our 17th birthday is a right of passage to start to learn to drive on the roads. In 2019 is this as fun or as safe it was in lets say the 1980s? Our roads today are much busier and technically much more difficult to drive today. With more traffic, bikes and more pedestrian areas how can we make this driving right of passage fun and most importantly safer for our next generation of road users?

Under 17s Driver Training

A great modern development in driver training over the last few years has been the introduction of off road driver training for under 17s. As a driving instructor I have been lucky to be involved in this training. In my case the local driver instructor club in Essex in conjunction with Essex County Council have come together to organise monthly events, held in closed park and ride facilities in the town to teach 15 to 17 year olds. The main  purpose of this is to teach the fundamentals of driving.

As this is held in a protected, safe and fully insured environment our youth can start to drive without the pressures of our busy roads. I see a smile on their faces as they pull off for the first time, closely watched by their parents. This smile is of course present with a 17 year olds first drive on the road itself but when I ask them how they are feeling on their first lesson they nearly always say excited and nervous. I never get this response in the safe car park environment. They are there to learn but above all to have fun.

Under 17 Driving Lessons

The structure of their time at the event is the same every month.  They firstly have a safety talk from a traffic officer. These interactive sessions focus on some of the most important safety issues on the roads: mobile phones; speeding, drugs and drink, seatbelts etc… Following this they have a 45 minute driving experience with a qualified approved driving instructor in a dual controlled car. As instructors we give a normal lesson as if we are on the road itself, just with a little less details so they can maximise driving time.

Everything from basic car control to emergency stops and reverse parking is covered. Some students complete 1 session a month before their 17th birthday, some spend a year coming to 11 or more events. However they choose to use their time with us one thing is clear – they are all more prepared to be on the road itself and therefore fewer nerves and fears are present on their first legal lesson on the roads. This also often shortens the time it actually takes to pass their driving tests. From my experience this could be as much as 20 or so hours less tuition needed to pass. Makes financial sense as well!

For more information on how to involve your children in the event please visit the website at www.sandonyoungdriverscheme.co.uk hope to see you there soon

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