Attributes of a good driver?

  1. Home
  2. /
  3. Uncategorised
  4. /
  5. Attributes of a good...

Despite what seems to be a never-ending succession of potholes and challenging road surfaces, statistically, the UK is one of the world’s safest countries in which to drive. The British driving test is renowned for being difficult both on road and on paper (an 86% score is required to pass the theory) and only around 45-50% of applicants pass first time.

And although the statistics suggest that passing the UK test at all indicates the requisite standard of knowledge and skill to drive safely has been achieved, there are always opportunities to improve.

  • The UK is one of the world’s safest countries in which to drive.
  • The UK driving test is renowned internationally for its difficulty.
  • Passing the UK test at all indicates a high standard of knowledge and skill.
  • Driving skills can be developed and improved even for qualified drivers.

Firstly, driving knowledge is key. Fundamentally, a driver has to learn, acknowledge, and understand the rules of driving, and be aware of any influences that may affect their ability to drive safely and mitigate them accordingly.

This can be as simple as acknowledging the responsibility all road users have to each other and the shared endeavour to keep the roads as safe as possible. Courtesy to other users on the road is crucial. Pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists are entitled to use the roads, so patience and tolerance is a really good attitude to cultivate.

Although temperament is not always easy to control, aiming to be calm, quick thinking, and tolerant in tricky situations is an asset whereas panic and a quick temper is not.

Similarly, practical knowledge of the car they’re driving in terms of braking and acceleration performance should make a difference to how someone drives. A small engine in a large vehicle does not successfully lend itself to rapid racing track manoeuvres and a large engine in a small car needs to be carefully controlled as unmanaged speed and power can create problems.

Although modern cars are often incredibly well equipped with safety features, it’s important that the driver knows and understands how to make the most of them.

Functional skills can be honed and developed whether someone has been driving for 40 years or passed their test only recently. Smooth gear changes, acceleration, braking and steering is good driving – for the passengers and the vehicle.

An awareness and anticipation of other road users and pedestrians enables drivers to be better prepared for events ahead such as unexpectedly wet surfaces, or runaway balls or animals. Anticipating problems before they occur enables drivers to avoid rather than react to them – but it takes concentration and attention.

Which is where common sense has a role to play. Tiredness, distractions and apathy can lead to accidents. Good drivers try to minimise the risks and knows how to mitigate them when they occur, for example by stopping for a rest or a drink.

No matter when the test was passed, being a good driver is an ever-evolving skill that calls for ongoing development for the benefit of everyone on the road. This could be through increasing confidence, allowing enough room, showing courtesy to road users others, practicing good skills rather than relying on bad habits, being aware and anticipating dangers, understanding and knowing how to use your car’s performance abilities and basic maintenance checks.

There’s always something to learn and improve for the safety, benefit, and enjoyment of everyone. Better drives mean safer roads.