Young Drivers Insurance

Advice to a Young and Inexperienced UK Driver from a Concerned Parent.

There is no substitute, when driving , for experience. You can learn nearly all of the rules and techniques of driving during your lessons but it takes a long time for you to become truly proficient in this complex and demanding skill. In fact, drivers never stop learning as every time they go out on the road they will meet with new experiences and different situations.

When you have first passed your test, it is too easy to believe you are now fully trained and ready to drive on your own. This is not the case. Once you have passed your driving test, you will be legally qualified to drive independently, but you will need a lot more experience before you can be truly proficient driving on your own.

It can be difficult to listen to your parents when you are young and excited about driving your first car. However, they can help you avoid some of the common pitfalls that new drivers can fall foul of. Here, are the top ten tips experienced drivers can offer new drivers to help them stay safe on the roads.

1. Know You Limits
Learning to drive can be a long process, so it is vital to be realistic about your level of skill. If you have only just passed your test, you have probably only driven for around 40 to 50 hours. This will have been accompanied by your instructor or experienced driver. At this point, you will have only a moderate knowledge of road systems and traffic rules. It is essential when you have bought your first car that you stick to what you know in the beginning. Practice driving on your own around routes you are already familiar with and avoid any long trips. Driving for over an hour can be extremely tiring and you will start to lose concentration. This can be dangerous for an experienced driver, let along someone who has only been driving for a short time. Make sure you know your limits and build up your level of experience slowly and carefully. This will help you to gain confidence and avoid getting yourself into situations where you could make the wrong decision through lack of experience.

2. Obey the Rules
When you are out on the road, you will see other drivers going too fast and generally ignoring the rules, of the road. Drivers who flaunt traffic regulations are opening themselves up to all kinds of problems. If you are breaking the rules, you are likely to get caught out by traffic cameras or the police. This could result in a hefty fine, or if the violation is serious, you could lose your licence. Breaking the rules of the road can also result in accidents - the rules are there to keep you and other road users safe.

3. Driving With Friends
It is exciting to be able to take your friends out for a drive once you have bought your first car. However, driving with friends can be terribly distracting. They will naturally want to talk to you. Even experienced drivers can find it difficult to concentrate, and hold a conversation, at the same time. It is also tempting to show off, in front of friends. This could lead you to take unnecessary risks, or overstretch your abilities. When you have first passed your test avoid driving with friends until you have more experience. Do not be afraid if you are driving with someone in your car to ask them to let you drive in peace and quiet. This is particularly important when you are approaching junctions and more complicated road systems.

4. Mobile Phones
You must never answer your phone or try to text when you are driving. This is a leading cause of accidents, and you will not be focusing on the road properly if you are trying to use your phone. This is also illegal and you could receive some severe penalties, if you are caught.

5. Music
It can be immensely comforting to have some music on when you are out driving on your own for the first time. However, you do drive with your ears, as well as your eyes and music can mask crucial sounds. For example, many inexperienced drivers find it difficult to manage clutch control. Listening to the car as you are pulling away can help you to judge clutch and accelerator positioning much more effectively. Try not to have music on so loud that it is deafening you to all other road noise.

6. Drugs, Drink and Tiredness
Avoid anything that could reduce your concentration. This means drink, drugs and lack of sleep. If you are extremely tired, then do not drive and find an alterative means of transport. Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Not only is this illegal but it can seriously affect your concentration and cause you to make dangerous decisions for both yourself and other road users.

7. Keep Alert
Even if you are driving safely and responsibly it does not mean other road users will be. Keep alert at all times and be careful when approaching junctions just in case another car pulls out in front of your or brakes sharply.

8. Stay Back
Do not follow other cars too closely. This can obscure your view of the road ahead and can make it difficult for you to stop in time if the car in front of you brakes suddenly. Following cars too closely can also intimidate other drivers and cause them to make mistakes.

9. Insurance
Insurance for young drivers is frightfully expensive. This means that many people cannot afford the high premiums and risk driving, without insurance. However, this is an extremely serious offence and ff you are caught without insurance, you could lose your licence or even go to prison if you have committed other offences. Another problem is that if you do not have insurance you will not be legally protected if you have an accident and this could leave you vulnerable to all kinds of potential legal claims without any cover to back you up.

10. Stay Calm
Finally, it is necessary to stay calm at all times. If someone has upset you, try not to get angry. If need be, pull over, at a safe spot, until you have calmed down. Driving when you are angry or upset can be dangerous as you may go too fast or make poor decisions.
 

 

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