Learning to drive is one of the most exciting things we will do! Learning to control the vehicle and make it do what you want, is a wonderful feeling. And when we pass the test and finally get to have the driving freedom, it is fantastic!
But while learning to drive is exciting, we are also aware of the responsibility driving a car holds….. We are now in charge of a killing machine, and therefore, learning to control it correctly, must be the highest priority.
Learner drivers have one of the lowest crash risks on our roads. But Red P-Plater holders (Provisional) have some of the highest crash risks! That is why it is so important to get the right training while you are still on your L-Plates.
Your driver trainer and supervising drivers are there to show you what you will need to prepare for once you have your licence to drive solo.
If in Australia, if you hold a learner’s licence and have never driven solo, you should be able to access the Keys2drive lesson, which will give your supervising driver the tips to help you practice the correct way. It is a free, no obligation lesson, provided by the Australian Government and the Automobile clubs of Australia (RACQ, NRMA, RACV etc.)
Learner drivers should feel safe when learning to drive. Many times, Learner drivers are told by their supervising driver to drive somewhere they will not feel comfortable.
This could include:
Driving to the local shops – where the learner must now deal with parking
Driving on highways – which requires merging abilities
Driving on long trips – which will make the learner tired and more likely to make mistakes
In these cases, you as the Learner driver, must communicate to your supervisor, that you are not comfortable doing this drive, and you would prefer to keep to areas and situations that you are capable of doing in your skill set.
Too many times I have had students in my car saying, “I will never drive with Dad/Mum/ other instructor again!”, as they have either been put in a situation they were not capable of, or when mistakes do happen, their supervisor has yelled at them, making the situation worse.
So whether it is a family member, friend, or even professional instructor, if you are not comfortable doing what they have asked, you need to speak up!