How to move off safely from parked.
One of the first and many important things you must learn to do as a learner driver, is move off safely and promptly from the parked position.
Moving off safely is a very important skill and failing to do so is the 6th most common reason why candidates fail their driving test.
Indeed, on your driving-test the examiner will get you to stop and move off several times, including moving away safely parked a short distance from another vehicle.
As your instructor will teach you, moving off safely is all based on the PREPARE, OBSERVE and MOVE routine.
Prepare : I use the acronym G G B which stands for gas, into gear 1 and biting point.
Note – both hands should be on the steering wheel : left hand ready is therefore ready to signal right using the indicator. (Of course if your drive a Japanese car then the indicator may instead be on the right of the steering wheel!)
Observe: 6 point observation from left to right finishing with the right blind spot.
1. Observe over left shoulder and behind
2. Left mirror
3. Observe out of front (decide whether signal necessary)
4. Rear view mirror (decide whether signal necessary – move left hand from steering wheel to handbrake
5. In right mirror
6. Observe over right shoulder in blind spot.
Note: The decision whether to signal/indicate is made when observing in front and behind. Therefore, having both hands on the steering wheel at the beginning, means that after you have indicated or not, your left hand can move from the steering-wheel to the handbrake, ensuring a smooth motion and prompt move off if safe to do so.
Move : If its safe to do so release the hand-brake steer to normal driving-position, cancel the indicator. If it’s not safe – then leave the indicator on but begin the observation again until its safe to move off.
The move off must be prompt. A significant delay between observation and actually moving off is not safe!
What about moving from traffic lights?
If you are moving off from traffic light use the POM routine but restrict the observation to mirrors only starting from the left mirror to check for possible cyclists undertaking.
What about moving off from the holdback position?
Again, in this situation you are use the POM routine but this time you must check the interior mirror and right door mirror.
Paul Noble (c) 2014
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