Advanced driving test - what have I done!

chriswt

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I've just signed up to take the advanced driving test and I'm starting to worry!

Has anyone who has taken their test got any advice?

Trying not to cross my hands when manoeuvring and sticking rigidly to the speed limits is proving the hardest part! how rigid are the testers when it comes to certain driving habbits?

Of course I still to town/urban speed limits anyway but on the motorway sticking to 70mph and leaving almost 100 yards distance between the car in front is almost impossible. You constantly have cars closing up the gap in front or sitting 2 inches from your rear bumper. Not to mention how venerable it can feel when crawling past lorries or being sandwiched in between them in the inside lane!

I really don’t think half my fellow inside and middle lane drivers actually realise that they are driving at all!!
 

Merc_Angel

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Hi

Did mine about 8 years ago - it was the scariest thing I have ever done. The Examiner is constantly writing so you thinking 'did I just do something wrong'? Of course, it is equally possible he is writing something positive!

One thing, if the speed limit says 60mph for example, he will expect you to do that conditions permitting.

Keep an eye on EVERY road sign because they may ask 'what was the warning sign you passed 100 metres ago'? If there were 2 signs - one on top of the other, he may ask which was the top one?

Push/pull steering is perfectly manageable providing you are doing the correct speed.

When using your mirrors make sure you move you head slightly - not just your eyes. He has to see you are using your mirrors.

When manoevering keep checking back, front, side etc for obstacles which can suddenly appear from nowhere!!!!

Make sure ALL you lights, indicators are working before the test as they can fail you on this even before you start

If you make a manoever and you think it was not by the book for example then give a commentary on why you did it - it may help.

As mentioned in a previous post, make sure that when you stop in a line of traffic 'bottom line of your bonnet the bottom line of the tyres on the car in front

The motorway driving was the most nerve racking for exactly the comments you make. They expect you to do 70 mph - again depending on conditions. When overtaking remember to give a quick glance backwards after checking mirror, indicating incase there is someone in your blindspot before pulling out. This is a habit I have NEVER forgotten and believe me it has saved me many a time.

Basically you not only have to think about what you are doing and the consequences of your actions but that of other drivers. Over the years I have gained this skill and therefore I feel I have managed to avoid possible accidents/incidents by prediction.

I am proud of my IAM and actually passed with a very high pass mark.

I wish you all the luck in the world.
 

daveenty

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I'm assuming that you'll be going to your local IAM meetings? If so, then just have a chat with the observers about what they think are your weak points and how you can brush up on them.

I'd also recommend putting into practice what you learn on your IAM sessions in your everyday driving (Which is what they're for anyway)
You'd be amazed how many just revert back to old habits.

As Merc_Angel says, good luck and treat it as a relaxed drive out and not a *test*
 

kikkthecat

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Have you signed up with the IAM or RoSPA ADA ?

With the IAM you take the test and that's it, you're a member

With RoSPA you're graded Bronze, Silver and Gold and have to retake the test (at no cost) every 3 years to remain a member.

All examiners/observers will be looking for safety above anything else and exceeding the speed limit or inappropriate speed for the conditions is a fail without exception.
 

saorbust

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I agree with everything already said. I passed my IAM in 2003, with a test of two hour duration. The officer was very chatty, but every so often would ask 'what was the last sign' etc.

One small hint - if you have speed tronic - use it. I did - on the basis I was using all the features of the car to aid my safe passage. They supported the use of it - it does rely on you being able to quickly adjust it and so forth, but it does stop you speeding.

If I can pass in a CLK55 AMG without breaking the limit - I'm sure you'll be fine. Don't be nervous, don't loose your cool, observe, listen and anticipate. Planning ahead is a real challenge on a motorway - but as already said - gives you a whole new perspective on driving.

Well done for taking the leap - now go for it.
 

Merc_Angel

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Have you signed up with the IAM or RoSPA ADA ?

With the IAM you take the test and that's it, you're a member

With RoSPA you're graded Bronze, Silver and Gold and have to retake the test (at no cost) every 3 years to remain a member.

All examiners/observers will be looking for safety above anything else and exceeding the speed limit or inappropriate speed for the conditions is a fail without exception.
Correct. The only way you would lose your membership is if you do not renew annually [can't remember the cost - about £25 I think] or if you incure points or if you are disqualified from driving. You have to sign a declaration at renewal to say you have been a good boy or girl:D

With the IAM you get a monthly magazine which is very interesting indeed.

I would love to put an IAM badge on my car but because my husband drives it and he is certainly not any advanced driver[!] I cannot because if he does something against the rules of the IAM it would give them a bad name:( and, apparently, I could be reported to the IAM
 
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chriswt

chriswt

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Thanks for the comments. I've signed up with the IAM, I didn't know of any others out there.

I'm fairly happy with picking up on everything that goes on around me. I often talk my way through a drive as a habbit but that has the negative effect of moaning about other peoples driving.

When it come to manoevering I feel like a learner driver again.

Does it curb road rage, by which I mean getting angry with dangerous drivers rather than just shouting at a granny because she pulled out when she shouldn't have (we all make mistakes). I do get wound up when I see dangerous driving and I would love to try to just be able to ignore it?
 

neilrr

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Hi
When using your mirrors make sure you move you head slightly - not just your eyes. He has to see you are using your mirrors.
If you have to move your head to see out of your mirrors then your mirrors need adjusting!
 

Merc_Angel

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If you have to move your head to see out of your mirrors then your mirrors need adjusting!
Trust me, they like to see you head moving SLIGHTLY - it is more of a 'quick flick'! Same when using your side mirrors. When I was doing my lessons, the instructor praised my driving skills but said he felt I did not use my mirrors enough. The reason - I just moved my eyes!

I did what I was told [for once!]
 

Merc_Angel

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Thanks for the comments. I've signed up with the IAM, I didn't know of any others out there.

I'm fairly happy with picking up on everything that goes on around me. I often talk my way through a drive as a habbit but that has the negative effect of moaning about other peoples driving.

When it come to manoevering I feel like a learner driver again.

Does it curb road rage, by which I mean getting angry with dangerous drivers rather than just shouting at a granny because she pulled out when she shouldn't have (we all make mistakes). I do get wound up when I see dangerous driving and I would love to try to just be able to ignore it?


In my case, yes. Because, as I said previously, taking your advanced driving teaches you to often 'predict' what others are going to do [not 100% fool proof unfortunately]. With this learned skill you can act to minimise any risks of danger caused by them. I can honestly say I NEVER get road rage - it is a wasted emotion plus sometimes it could backfire and with some of the nutcases on the roads today is it really worth getting physically attacked in some cases:devil:

Just had annual reminder for membership - it is in fact £17.50 pa
 

guydewdney

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sounds very much like the class 1 HGV I'm doing at the moment - all about observation observation observation... and 16 gears...
 

Bobby Dazzler

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I've never done an advanced driving test but have attended an advanced driving course at work. The instructor asked how often I checked fluids, tyre pressures, etc, and I said fortnightly. He then asked, "what should the tyre pressures be?"

I said I can never remember but check on the inside of the filler flap at which point he noted that I didn't know! He then proceeded to check the pressure of every tyre! Believe it or not he mentioned the fact that I couldn't remember the pressure on the report returned to my employer!!

I think he was picking flies though as the rest was exemplary!! :D

Might be worthwhile checking pressures and fluids, and remembering related information, just in case that's covered on the test!!
 

R2D2

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I've done my Advanced test 3 times over 25 years. When I was 19 I failed for dithering between 3rd and 4th gears on a large roundabout. Either gear would have done but I kept dithering about changing. I also failed for not commencing observation of a road I was going to join about 500 yards away, when there were big gaps in the hedges which would have enabled me to know what was coming towards the junction I was approaching.

I passed when I was 20 and retook it in Scotland a few years ago just for the heck of it. I passed again and they asked if I wanted to be an observer.
 
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glojo

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sounds very much like the class 1 HGV I'm doing at the moment - all about observation observation observation... and 16 gears...
:) Observation and anticipation

Good luck,
John
 

blassberg

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I passed mine as one of the things on my list to do before I was 40.

I liked cars and drove 50k+ miles a year so wanted a piece of paper to say that I was ok at it.

My examiner was a plain clothes armed rider / driver policemen. He required no commentary, expected me to pass the car in front, safely, if it was doing the speed limit, and he asked me to cut across the inside lane of traffic coming off the aston expressway in rush hour to see how i handled risk and took decisions regarding my safety and the safety of others.

incidentally...

I hear that for the bikers version you are expected to look in your mirrors avery seconds.

I was surprised on my standard motorbike test to be followed by the examiner in a car. He thought I passed with no minor faults at all, but I know he didn't see me fail to do a lifesaver (look) at a right hand turn... he was stuck in traffic behind the previous corner. That story reminds me to do them.
 

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