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PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2006 18:21 
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My problem with any extra speed restriction on young motorists would be the same as my problem with restrictions on goods vehicles. Namely that the roads are busy enough that speed limit would end up being the rolling speed of the road.

Most SC A roads now trundle along at 40 now because there's an HGV up ahead somewhere obeying the law.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 15:28 
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Ernest Marsh : "just how much difference does it make having 5 up in an Escort/Corsa instead of just you and a friend in the front seat?"

IMHO quite a lot. With just your mate in the front - yes you may want to show off a little - but there is no-one in the back having a laugh distracting you to 'join in' (instead of concentrating on the job in hand). Also you as the driver may feel that it is your responsibility to calm down your passengers, or check they're not puking in your car or lighting up when you don't want them to etc. With a full load chances are some of the passengers are likely to be yours mates mates or even less known and less bothered about the situation.

All these potential distractions and more lead me to the conclusion that single passenger only for a period?/ age reached? would reduce the no of younger drivers overdoing it. Also the accidents will only involve 2 people, not for instance (the Corsa) in which all the rear seated passengers (age 15/16) were killed last week.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 15:39 
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And of course when you put five people in one of these small cars, there's quite a substantial impact of handing too.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 16:02 
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point taken FYI: In the example I quoted it was actually 4 rear seated passengers who were killed . So 6 up in a Corsa!


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 17:01 
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I've got a wee thought about this all... The majority of accidents over here involving young drivers occur on back roads. These are the roads with the least chance of having a traffic cop sitting waiting. They are also the roads less suited to speed (in general). Younger drivers tend not to see this, and will drive at their limit, thinking it's safe. I find myself more inclined to drive at 60 on a decent NSL road, than I would on the motorway, where I stick rigidly to 50 unless something is happening. This is a road where it would be safer to do 60 or 70, yet I won't because the chances of me getting stopped are greater.

I also find that the R plates draw a lot of attention to myself, and if I have a car full of people I'll drive at the limit, because a car full of people with R plates up sort of sets alarm bells off for the police...

I still don't really agree with restrictions in speed, it causes unnecessary wastage of time... I find that a byproduct of being restricted in speed will discourage me from using the motorway, and I will often choose the backroads to get home from certain places... I get my R plates off at the end of the month, and I'm really happy about that because I feel that I've gained enough experience of driving in the last year to start driving a bit quicker on the motorway...

It's quite scary how much I've learned over the past year... You guys have been a great source of information and stuff... I'm going to try and get in contact with my instructor and see if he will bring me out once or twice to check how my driving is... In my opinion my only real bad habit is that I coast coming up to a junction or traffic lights... Not for a mile or 2 though, just the final hundred or so yards I'll depress the clutch...

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 17:29 
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SafeSpeed wrote:
And of course when you put five people in one of these small cars, there's quite a substantial impact of handing too.


Not to mention interference of driver attention due to cramped conditons and driver overload - especially if going for night out, when spirits are high.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 17:51 
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mikes1988 wrote:
I've got a wee thought about this all... The majority of accidents over here involving young drivers occur on back roads. These are the roads with the least chance of having a traffic cop sitting waiting. They are also the roads less suited to speed (in general).




Very true.

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Younger drivers tend not to see this, and will drive at their limit, thinking it's safe. I find myself more inclined to drive at 60 on a decent NSL road,




Not just the young who will drive at the speed limit - thinking it is "safe" when the safe speed may well require a lower speed. We need to really focus more attention on the need to "read a road and its conditions" more accurately....er - - back to COAST again :wink:

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than I would on the motorway, where I stick rigidly to 50 unless something is happening. This is a road where it would be safer to do 60 or 70, yet I won't because the chances of me getting stopped are greater.


Limiting probationers to 50 mph on 70 mph roads does seem a strange way of keeping the motorways safe. I think safer to keep within the normal and legal flow of the traffic. I do worry in case these new drivers are more focussed on keeping to the lower speed than what is going on well into the limit point of view in the road ahead of them and in their mirrors coming up behind them.

New German drivers are restricted to their national limit.. and it should be pointed out that the German drivers do pay a surcharge on their inusrance to be covered at above 80 mph on the derrestricted A/bahn.
If they crash at over 80 mph - they are then covered - and they have to be over the proabtionary and over - I think - 25 years to be eligible to insure themselves for any "envelope pushing"

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I also find that the R plates draw a lot of attention to myself, and if I have a car full of people I'll drive at the limit, because a car full of people with R plates up sort of sets alarm bells off for the police...


I think though that the R and P plates do alert others that the person is new to the roads and they should be more courteous. As hinted in another thread concerning the Auto Express report on child seats.. our lads and lasses would be having a word with anyone driving an overloaded car. In the case of a car load of 4 youngsters - possible we would just "escort at a distance so as not to put off" just to make sure they are OK. We do not go around stopping folks just because they are out with their mates - and like myself as a youngster when followed by a cop (in my case sometimes my Dad! :yikes: I followed a family tradition :lol: ) - you see a visible concentration set in and that's when you can smile to yourself and know they will be fine.

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I still don't really agree with restrictions in speed, it causes unnecessary wastage of time... I find that a byproduct of being restricted in speed will discourage me from using the motorway, and I will often choose the backroads to get home from certain places...



I agree - you need to keep up in flow and it helps you judge and match speed to blend in safely with the flwo on entry to motorway and any overtakes whilst on it.

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I get my R plates off at the end of the month, and I'm really happy about that because I feel that I've gained enough experience of driving in the last year to start driving a bit quicker on the motorway...

It's quite scary how much I've learned over the past year... You guys have been a great source of information and stuff... I'm going to try and get in contact with my instructor and see if he will bring me out once or twice to check how my driving is... In my opinion my only real bad habit is that I coast coming up to a junction or traffic lights... Not for a mile or 2 though, just the final hundred or so yards I'll depress the clutch...



Mike - you sound to me like a very mature young man and one who really disproves the media myth of "youth today" Common fault .. I think you overstimate the distance perhaps of this "coasting"

OK try developing "progressive braking" - you can do this on any empty car park or very quiet road


Choose a point at which you would like to stop and try to stop as close as possible to it.

Both hands should be on the steering wheel :wink:


Put light pressure on the brake initially

gradually increase the pressure and "feel" the slow down. Too jerky and you are doing it too roughly :wink:

When the vehicle is almost stopped - ease off the pressure so that it stops smoothly.

You can also try this one to practise stopping neatly at the kerb without "kerbing or hitting the kerb"


(I had to do this with a bowl of water on the bonnet to get it "perfect" :lol: at Hendon)

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 11:26 
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I think compulsary "P" plates would be a great idea. I passed my driving test (friday the 13th of sept 1996) and bought a big old '84 VW passat from an auction for 500 quid, not the kind of car one would assume to be a new driver. I pranged it twice in the next 6 months, both times while overtaking, and while my own inexperience was primarily to blame both times, looking back it'd be unfair not to say I was "aided" by the aggressive/unhelpfull actions of other drivers. I think perhaps these drivers may have been more cautious if I'd been displaying "I'm a bit crap" plates, but lets be honest, how many 18 year old men will voluntarily put them on their car?

Second thing, I've done a couple of "driving assessment" courses for insurance companies, the kind you just drive round for an hour or two while the assesser makes recomendadtions on how you could improve. Both times I found these - I wouldn't say patronising - but the assesser was keen to complement me in several areas, I guess psychologically they want to make you feel responsible and thereby take pride in your driving, and listen to their comments about how you can improve, so all in all it's a good thing. I think assessments like this should be made compulsary- maybe at 4 and 12 months post sucessfull test pass (really depends how much driving the newby does and could be variable- no point assessing someone who hasn't driven since test pass). these should be assessments not tests, but the examiner can of course recomend the driver takes further tuition if the driving warrents it. If newbies had restricted car options, the 12 month assessment could also be an oppertunity for the assesser to "pass them off" for unlimited car choice, or recommend another assessment after more experience.

In fact it probably wouldn't be such a bad thing if such assessments were made compulsary every ten years... not a re-test as such, just a helpfull asessment with recomendations.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 20:58 
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smeggy wrote:
After all, we all must have been judged to be appropriately skilled enough in order to gain our driving licenses.


sore point im afraid

it is my firm belief that passing the driving test is just that. you are not trained to drive. you are trained how to steer a car, make it go and make it stop. there is little else to it. i personally didnt learn how to control a car for a year and a half when i completed a skid course in a land rover and a 3 axle rigid truck.

beyond that, you need to learn the car you regularly drive. every car is different and require different skills to drive each one. i know my cars limits so i know how to maintain a steady speed on a windy road therefore reducing fuel consumption and stress which increases concentration. it takes practice and you dont get that prior to passing your driving test.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 22:43 
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Dratsabasti wrote:
Perhaps, if we started to train people to drive, instead of training them to pass the test, maybe that would make some difference.
I have some knowledge of the German driver training.
They have to complete courses in First Aid, basic car maintenance, road law.
Dotted all round Germany are Verkehrubungsplatz (Driver Training area), where young people from the age of 14 are allowed to drive on the enclosed circuit. The circuit consists of a real lifelike road infrastructure including traffic lights and even a roundabout, they have laybys with stacks of tyres to simulate parked cars, to practise parallel parking, a little humpbacked bridge and so on.
At the time I was out there, it cost 5Dmarks for insurance for the day, and 4Dmarls an hour for use of the area.
The driving schools also used this area to teach emergency braking both in the dry and wet, and also the use of cadence braking, this was before the mass introduction of ABS, and they could have just half of the road surface wet and the other half dry.
The Polizei also used to visit.
Unfortunately, this would be considered far too expensive to provide by this inept government, and could possibly do some good for road safety, so thats a non starter then isn't it.



first post.

we do.

the under seventeen car club does this, both my elder two are members
its been going for thirty years. its private club not centrally funded not a govt organisation. but its not exclusive, anyone who is 11/12 to the age of 15 ish can join, just need a parent with a road legal/worthy car.

it helps of you have a dad who is a driving nut who will give you a running commentatry for each journey and then ask either of the older kids to give one as well or at least prioritse the hazards, they are 11 and 13

i suppose the unfortunate think is, its voluntary and takes a keen/concerned parent to initiate to join up

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2007 08:58 
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noodles wrote:
Dratsabasti wrote:
Perhaps, if we started to train people to drive, instead of training them to pass the test, maybe that would make some difference.
I have some knowledge of the German driver training.
They have to complete courses in First Aid, basic car maintenance, road law.
Dotted all round Germany are Verkehrubungsplatz (Driver Training area), where young people from the age of 14 are allowed to drive on the enclosed circuit. The circuit consists of a real lifelike road infrastructure including traffic lights and even a roundabout, they have laybys with stacks of tyres to simulate parked cars, to practise parallel parking, a little humpbacked bridge and so on.
At the time I was out there, it cost 5Dmarks for insurance for the day, and 4Dmarls an hour for use of the area.
The driving schools also used this area to teach emergency braking both in the dry and wet, and also the use of cadence braking, this was before the mass introduction of ABS, and they could have just half of the road surface wet and the other half dry.
The Polizei also used to visit.
Unfortunately, this would be considered far too expensive to provide by this inept government, and could possibly do some good for road safety, so thats a non starter then isn't it.



first post.

we do.

the under seventeen car club does this, both my elder two are members
its been going for thirty years. its private club not centrally funded not a govt organisation. but its not exclusive, anyone who is 11/12 to the age of 15 ish can join, just need a parent with a road legal/worthy car.

it helps of you have a dad who is a driving nut who will give you a running commentatry for each journey and then ask either of the older kids to give one as well or at least prioritse the hazards, they are 11 and 13

i suppose the unfortunate think is, its voluntary and takes a keen/concerned parent to initiate to join up


Hi noodles and welcome to the site.

That's a great idea, but its publicised where?

Like you said, you're a driving nut, so I assume you read driving mags etc which contain adverts for the club? Unfortunately there's no way for anyone else to find out about it :(

Re-reading this thread got me thinking. I passed my car test at 17 (12/04/99) after only 14 hours of formal training. (My dad was great - he would let me drive the family everywhere and after a month or so of training he basically didn't say anything and just let me get on with it which helped.) I then drove for about 3 months before I went off to Uni.

The trouble is, I didn't learn so many vital things, like the 2 second rule, how to properly assess and think about a situation etc.

A couple of years later, with no further driving experience at all, I took my DAS course and the difference in the attitude towards the training was shocking. Yes there was focus on basic skills, but most of the training involved really learning to ride safely - emphesis on safe distances / speeds, forward planning and defensive riding. I failed 1st time on the u-turn and passed 2nd time.

Something like 4 years after passing my car test I got my first car - a 1.8l Mk 3 Golf GL, and started commuting 90 miles a day round trip. Even with no intermediate experience, after a little bit of practice of the basics I was a better driver than I was when I passed. I think this was down to the motorbike training coupled with maturity and more capacity to process information - basically the increased age meant that my brain was actually capable of processing information at the level required.

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2007 22:16 
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Limiting the speeds of new/young drivers will do more harm than good. The problem with young drivers (in general) is that they've learnt how to pass a flawed test and not a lot else. The government have finally caught on about young motorcyclists lives being numbered in days and made that test a hell of a lot harder. Its time for the car test to undergo such treatments.

Unfortunately what i propose will be costly but can you put a cost on a life? What about 2 lives? or 3? or 4?

The first and one of the most prominent flaw of the current test is there's almost no preparation for the motorway which a lot of people consider to be the most scary type of roads and quite rightly. How easy is it to get lost when you've just started driving on a large roundabouts with all kinds of things you're not used to going on? Pretty damn easy. This needs to be changed.

The second flaw is there's not a lot on driver etiquette. If you wave someone into a minor by slowing down or holding on your test you'll be marked down for it (fail?). How many times a week will you do this? A fair few I'll bet you. Better that instead of discouraging what will happen to teach when and where it's appropriate.

The third flaw which annoys me to no end is the complete lack of training in when it all goes wrong. Things go wrong in life, no matter how much you train to prevent them eventually you'll more than likely have to deal with a loss of control in one way or another. Especially for a young driver. Ask someone who's just passed their test what to do in the case of under steer/oversteer. What effect will paint on the roads have when cornering hard? How do you avoid hitting an object dead in front of you when you can't stop in time? What effect does wet conditions have on the handling of your car? What effect does snow have on your driving? You'll get "i don't know" "nothing" and "i don't know" "not a lot" "i don't know" as answers. The truth is untill you've personally experienced driving in weather conditions and the loss of control in said circumstance you'll never realise just quite how bigger effect it'll have on a crappy car with thin 'woo-tang ditch finder' tyres. 70-0 threshold braking isn't even covered. This needs to be changed.

While the test itself i feel is adequate in general road driving except for a few flaws like point 2 i feel that on it's own it is far far to insubstantial to prepare and certify that someone is ready to go out on the big wide roads.

What in my opinion should be done about it is for the 'pass plus' scheme to be made the third part of obtaining your license and then expanded to become far more detailed. Firstly each unit should become far more detailed containing far more driving time in each condition. Secondly there should be time spent on a skid pan and advanced car control techniques including braking with ABS and without to avoid objects, controling oversteer and understeer and generally driving fast round a track/bunch of cones. Yes this will be expensive but as i said earlier whats the value of a life?

And for the record i'm 18 soon to be getting my first years driving experience so these are based on the experiences of myself and many peers.


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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2007 22:29 
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well i came across it because i was scouting around for a birthday present for the eldest

i knew that brands hatch leisure offered a simple afternoon driving a car but was looking for something more when i stumbled upon the site.

I was poo pooed within the family “huh he only wants to do it not for the kids” etc mainly from the wife’s dragon I just ignored that

Currently the younger one is better than the older one, he is 11

He gets up to 50 mph around castle coombe, it is set out as a two way road with an area for overtaking, junctions and roundabouts traffic lights are set up on the track

They use other venues including TRL. Motorway driving is undertaken at Alconbury (raf base), they get to do other trips out like pentti’s left foot rally school and caterhams, lorry driving, skid pan, first aid

Each child is graded and takes regular gradings

Sorry if I’m selling it but the standard test is just crap, I learnt around a housing estate and a town centre never got out of third, yet it qualified me to drive on the motorway, drive across the dales and pennines (and all that comes with it), to overtake, to drive in fog and snow, route find and drive in rush hour traffic, fast A roads

The only saving grace as a car driver - I survived two years on a motorbike

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2007 12:03 
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Chimera wrote:

The first and one of the most prominent flaw of the current test is there's almost no preparation for the motorway


The problem here is two fold

1) Learners are not allowed on motorways, so you would have to institute some sort of two-stage test or change the law;
2) There are vast swathes of the country that are huge distances/times from the nearest motorway. There are no motorways in Cornwall and only a relatively short stretch of the M5 in Devon. For Wales, there is only the M4 in the South and in East Anglia nothing except the M11 in the extreme West of the region. Scotland only has the M74/M8/M9/M90 complex in the South and nothing in the North/Highlands


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