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Turvey

Learner Drivers On Motorways

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If it's only with qualified instructors with dual controls as it says, I don't see an issue.

However, allowing them to learn and requiring them to learn are two different things.

There should be some sort of mandatory learners log which requires learners to have done so many hours of different types of driving with a qualified instructor before they pass their test. So to keep costs down they can learn the basics from mummy or daddy, but then have to do a certain number of hours with an instructor doing things like motorway driving, night driving, etc. Before they can take their test.

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Good, however this option was already part of the Pass Plus scheme anyway.
Seeing as there are many areas (South West) in particular without a motorway to hand, it's pretty pointless here.
Areas with motorways close by - not a problem.
By statistics, 72% of accidents occur on roads in built-up areas, 22% on A roads and just 6% on motorways ( however motorways and A roads account for about 50% of fatalities due to increased speed levels ).
I find motorways far easier to drive on tbh.

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I think this is going to be a difficult area. As @Stoney871 says some areas do not have a motorway locally, it is at least 100miles to the nearest one from my house. I think it would need to be a prerequisite that prior to motorway driving the Learner would have to demonstrate the ability to drive safely at, and maintain a speed of 70mph. On a DC of course, I'm not suggesting they do it past the local church and school.

I was going to say that I don't agree with you @alexp999 when you said about driving with mummy and daddy but then I realised that would be better than what happens now. The Learner passes and then the next day drives all his mates to Alton Towers (other destinations are available) so at least in the way described there would be hours with a 'responsible' driver.

A little off topic but I couldn't believe the price of the test and lessons now! When I was learning I got 10 x 1 hour lessons for £100 and my test cost a 2hour lesson.


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It's the cost the government have to be mindful of when it comes to learning to drive. That's why I suggested still letting friends and family teach basics. At the moment you could take your test after never having been out with an instructor.

I was lucky with cost, my Dad had only just finished as a driving instructor himself and still had the car with dual controls. That was over 10 years ago though, it's gone up so much since.

My Dad actually had to change job, because at the time he did it, the prices were so low he couldn't make a decent living. I think he used to offer the same 10 for 100 or thereabouts.

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Learners should be able to demonstrate certain levels of control and ability before being allowed to take to the motorway.  Slowing down city traffic is one thing, but making an absolute balls up on the motorway when there are HGVs and folk doing 70+ :blush: is a recipe for disaster.  At least with pass plus, they have passed their test, and more than likely have been out driving on their own, getting some real experience, before doing it.

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The problem with pass plus is that it isn't mandatory.

You can currently pass your test in a nice quiet rural area of the UK away from motoway then legally drive on any public road in the UK.

My Dad used to have people go and take their test out at Dorchester because it had easier routes than the Bournemouth test centre.

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The biggest problem with motorways for new drivers is that they believe they're this mystical realm so full danger and strange, complicated rules...

Why? Simply because they aren't allowed to go on them as a Learner.  So they form this opinion that they must be difficult to drive on, the rules must be incredibly difficult to understand and that if you don't follow them perfectly, you will end up crashing in a big fireball and causing 1000 mile tailbacks...all because your speedo hit 71!

I think it's a good thing.  And by catching drivers at the most receptive time if their driving lives, we may see an improvement in general motorway behaviour.  Obviously it should make it safer too - even if it only reduces fear.

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Arguably the most difficult part of motorway driving is joining the motorway. The number of times I have joined a motorway and had to slam the anchors on for some melon who couldn't foresee that as he was driving past the junction someone else (me) might wish to join and they should either A. Speed Up to get past the junction or B. Move lanes to allow me to join without causing death and mayhem is mind blowing. 

Then there is club 40 - 50 (nothing like 18 - 30) who are just plain dangerous. And we can talk all day about the 'Daydreamers' who are off in their own wee world, and have no notion of whats around them lol.

 

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I agree with it, I do a lot of motorway driving and its amazing how many people don't know how to use a motorway properly, thinking they have the right of way when joining, middle lane hogging, driving in a closed lane.... the list just goes on. I couldn't say its young drivers, middle aged or the elderly or even the vehicle they drive. Cars, motorbikes trucks or buses its down to lack of knowledge using motorways. The theory test just isn't enough. A woman I used to live next door to, very careful driver, clean licence and driving history ect been on the road for years and genuinely thought she had the right of way when joining a motorway and complained how some drivers just don't move over (ok when lane two is clear) but she thought the flowing traffic in lane 1 should adjust their speed to allow her to join not that she should adjust her speed to join the flow of traffic. Look at the marking on the road when you join a motorway. Exactly the same as Give way markings. I could go on all night on this subject, Like how many people mention the "slow lane" the "fast lane" ??? No such thing its lanes 1, 2, and 3 they are all 70mph unless stated otherwise. Current and learner drivers should be better educated on motorways. Starting with learners I agree with but its only half of the problem

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Seeing as the Highway Code is required reading for theory tests, Q&A during the practical test and there is a section dedicated to motorway driving there is no excuse for ignorance in regards to motorway use.

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I have a question that maybe @Stoney871 may be able to answer.

I understand that cars joining the motorway do not have right of way or any rights to join the main carriageway, and that the use of the hard shoulder in this situation is not permitted. So, if you do not have right of way should you stop as though it was a give way or carry on using the hard shoulder? If you are expected to stop then the general rule and advice given by a police officer allowing a vehicle to return to the main carriageway is that they should build up speed on the hard shoulder first. So surely you should not stop at the end of the slip, you should carry on along the hard shoulder.

In my question above then it should be assumed that the vehicle is not entering the motorway whilst traffic on the carriageway is stationary. It is joining when traffic is free flowing but the vehicle is unable to exceed the speed of vehicles on the carriageway to safely join and cannot drop back either as traffic is close together. I realise this would be an extremely rare case, but in theory what should you do? To get my answer in first, I would use the hard shoulder.


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You MUST NOT drive on the hard shoulder except in an emergency or if directed to do so by the police, HA traffic officers in uniform or by signs.

Laws MT(E&W)R regs 5, 9 & 16(1)(a), MT(S)R regs 4, 8 & 14(1)(a), and RTA 1988, sects 35 & 186, as amended by TMA 2004 sect 6

You are expected to merge when safe and legal to do so then build up speed it lane 1.
You only use the hard shoulder to build speed if you have entered or stopped there due to an emergency or as directed by an appropriate authority (Police, Highway Agency etc.) or by instruction of a road sign.
At all times be aware that other vehicles may be stopped on the hard shoulder.
Tbh you invariably find that hard shoulders disappear in the vicinity of slip roads / junctions anyway.

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Concerning the Highway Code statement that - You MUST NOT stop on a slip road- this is interpreted as just that - stopping. Merging with the main motorway is "giving way", as is giving way on the roundabouts at the end of slip roads.

You wouldn't want to argue your case for driving along the hard shoulder in an attempt to merge with traffic rather than pausing at the end of the slip road.

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Concerning the Highway Code statement that - You MUST NOT stop on a slip road- this is interpreted as just that - stopping. Merging with the main motorway is "giving way", as is giving way on the roundabouts at the end of slip roads.

You wouldn't want to argue your case for driving along the hard shoulder in an attempt to merge with traffic rather than pausing at the end of the slip road.

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Fair enough, I would have thought it was more dangerous to come to a stop then try to build up speed. I suppose it's only like joining a DC as you can do 70 along them. I don't know why but everything seems more 'dangerous/risky' when you think motorway, but as your stats show it's actually less dangerous by comparison. A crash on the motorway is going to attract more attention given the speed + number of cars involved + traffic hold up. I drive the A9 and A82 frequently and they are certainly more dangerous but you think nothing of it really. Sounds like I'm back tracking now, I'm not I'm just giving it more thought after your posts. Prior to this I would genuinely have kept going (if possible) and thought I would have a case to argue should I get stopped.


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I think it's a good idea. I recall passing my test, many........many years ago and had absolutely no motorway experience. I was fortunate because I passed late Spring and the daylight started very early; so got up at 5am one weekend morning and went for a drive to gain experience on what was an empty road....... simply to get use to the speed, the lane changing, the difference signs etc. New drivers would be lucky to find an empty motorway even at 5am now.

That said where I live there are plenty of 3 lane Trunk roads with a 70mph speed limit and hard shoulders. There are small differences, but they are effectively motorways in all but name. Learners can and do use these, so they do get experience of those types of roads

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On ‎13‎/‎08‎/‎2017 at 11:13 PM, alexp999 said:

If it's only with qualified instructors with dual controls as it says, I don't see an issue.

However, allowing them to learn and requiring them to learn are two different things.

There should be some sort of mandatory learners log which requires learners to have done so many hours of different types of driving with a qualified instructor before they pass their test. So to keep costs down they can learn the basics from mummy or daddy, but then have to do a certain number of hours with an instructor doing things like motorway driving, night driving, etc. Before they can take their test.

There would be an issue with compulsory motorway driving as part of the test. I use to live in Thurso and the nearest motorway to there would be the M90 220 miles away. I also lived in Shetland which has no motorways and less than 1 mile of 60mph "dual carriageway"

Thinking of the situation the other way round how many town and city drivers feel comfortable driving along an unlit single track road on a dark winters night. Many times I was driving along such roads and got stuck behind another driver, usually tourists, driving very slowly and not using the passing place to allow drivers behind to pass because they think they are only to be used for oncoming traffic

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Perhaps they could bring in simulators for areas that don't have access to all the roads required?

I just think at the moment drivers can pass without the required knowledge or experience of certain types of road.

Even if it's in the highway code, many people unfortunately only learn what's needed to pass the test. The bare minimum for their area.

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That's a good idea @alexp999 but I can see the cost of lessons rocketing! You're right on the money there too. Learners are taught to pass a test, not how to drive.

I know on at least one of the Islands @CyprusPluto there are not even any roundabouts!


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12 hours ago, Jonro2009 said:

That's a good idea @alexp999 but I can see the cost of lessons rocketing! You're right on the money there too. Learners are taught to pass a test, not how to drive.

I know on at least one of the Islands @CyprusPluto there are not even any roundabouts!


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I didn't live on Shetland when the first roundabout was built, but from chatting to those that did, it cause huge amounts of confusion :biggrin:

It was only about 5/6 years ago that I was waiting at Tesco roundabout in Lerwick when a driver simply turned right, went round the roundabout the wrong way and off on their merry way down South Road. Myself and this van driver just stared at each other and raised our eyebrows.

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I never learned to drive on the motorway (obv), nor there are any grade separated junction dual carriageways in my area. So I never learned how to "merge" if you will, BUT I took my instructors heed AND the highway codes heed... which state, to MATCH traffic speed on the Motorway and find a slot to get on. Using this rule, I've never had a problem joining the motorway, I even shoulder check behind me as you are supposed to, since your mirrors wont show a damn thing as you approach to find any lorrys/cars in your way as you try to speed match and find a gap to merge into. I use the Motorway every day as per my commute for work and it is beggars belief even at 4am to see people joining the motorway at 35mph!

 

Edit: Reason I think no learners were allowed on the Motorway was yes the speed, but comparing that to a dualled A road, what IS the difference?? An extra lane in most cases, like wow!! Really? Honestly a GSJ A road is no different to a Motorway apart from an extra lane, which only requires a little more awareness. Or was it the last time the "test" was made standard, "Motorways" didnt exist?

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I never learned to drive on the motorway (obv), nor there are any grade separated junction dual carriageways in my area. So I never learned how to "merge" if you will, BUT I took my instructors heed AND the highway codes heed... which state, to MATCH traffic speed on the Motorway and find a slot to get on. Using this rule, I've never had a problem joining the motorway, I even shoulder check behind me as you are supposed to, since your mirrors wont show a damn thing as you approach to find any lorrys/cars in your way as you try to speed match and find a gap to merge into. I use the Motorway every day as per my commute for work and it is beggars belief even at 4am to see people joining the motorway at 35mph!
 
Edit: Reason I think no learners were allowed on the Motorway was yes the speed, but comparing that to a dualled A road, what IS the difference?? An extra lane in most cases, like wow!! Really? Honestly a GSJ A road is no different to a Motorway apart from an extra lane, which only requires a little more awareness. Or was it the last time the "test" was made standard, "Motorways" didnt exist?



Am I right when I 'think' I remember dual carriageway speeds were 60mph and 'A' roads were 50? That might explain why motorways are seen to be faster roads in the test and learners? This part of the driving 'curriculum ' hasn't been updated when the increase of speeds was.


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Think back to when there was no formal speed limits at all.
The 30 mph speed limit in built-up areas was introduced in 1930.
The 70 mph limit on previously unrestricted roads was introduced in 1965.

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Think back to when there was no formal speed limits at all.
The 30 mph speed limit in built-up areas was introduced in 1930.
The 70 mph limit on previously unrestricted roads was introduced in 1965.

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im not old enough to remember that.
good job you do. lol

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