November 29, 2017
Driving Behind Buses in the Rush Hour

We’ve all been stuck behind a bus at some point in our lives, and granted, it’s not much fun considering the number of stops it has to make between you and your destination. That said, your arrival on time is equally as important as that of the bus passengers, so try and be patient while behind the wheel. Furthermore, consider yourself fortunate enough to be able to drive to work in your own vehicle, as most commuters wish they could do.

Should the opportunity to overtake arise – if it is safe and legal to do so – then go for it! But if not, exercise that patience and wait for the right moment. Too many drivers get impatient and aggressive when the slightest delay is caused to their journey – even if they’re not required to arrive at their destination at any specific time.

Remember, the bus driver has a schedule to run to, and is in no more of a hurry than you. We can’t stress it enough – be patient, stay cool!

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 28, 2017
Impatient Drivers Go Wrong Way Through Tunnel

A number of drivers have been branded “irresponsible” for turning around after queieing inside a tunnel, causing what could only be described as chaos. The impatient motorists decided to simply ignore the fact that they were on a one-way system instead of waiting for the congestion to pass.

One motorist filmed the scene in the Butetown tunnels in Cardiff when they were faced with a “10 minute delay.” He said they simply exacerbated the situation after turning around and attempting to drive out of the tunnels on the wrong side of the road.

A minor collision on the A4232 flyover to Cardiff Bay had caused traffic to build at 6.15pm on Saturday afternoon, with cars queuing all the way down the dual carriageway.

However instead of waiting, footage shows a female driver of a black Mercedes telling other motorists to exit the wrong way out of the busy tunnel. Seconds later a silver 4×4 is seen with other cars using the tunnel’s second lane to turn around.

The witness reported: “The driver was telling other cars to get out the way and drive down the middle lane like you see emergency services do. People just started turning their cars around like it was a normal thing to do. They hadn’t been there for more than minutes. I couldn’t believe it.”

The traffic cleared in 15 minutes after the accident was cleared 300 yards away from the tunnel.

While there is nothing more frustrating than getting stuck in a traffic jam, please try and be patient as you may find the hold-up is not as drastic as it initially seems.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 27, 2017
Take Extra Care When Encountering Bin Lorries

Waste crews in South Staffordshire are appealing to motorists to drive safely when overtaking bin lorries, following a series of incidents caused by dangerous driving. Since October 2013 when all bin lorries in South Staffordshire were fitted with 360o cameras, they have recorded a monthly average of 8 incidents of poor, dangerous and aggressive driving.

Recorded footage shows impatient drivers mounting the pavement in order to get around bin lorries, instead than waiting. In one shocking incident, a car was recorded driving at speed around the bin lorry, almost hitting a member of the crew.  As a result the driver was cautioned by the police and fined.

One waste collection worker who has worked for Biffa for 12 years has reportedly witnessed or experienced to many close shaves, one of which was when he was nearly hit by a car while on a collection round in Codsall.

He said: “Every day, we are reminded by our supervisors that safety is of paramount importance. I was just out there doing my job – when a driver became impatient, decided to get round our wagon by driving dangerously, and nearly took me out. I don’t want to feel like a target just because I wear high visibility clothing and work out on the roads and streets providing a service for residents. It does worry me that people seem to have less patience, and seem more willing to risk my life and the lives of my workmates. Most of the danger we experience during our working days is caused by impatient and aggressive drivers.”

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 24, 2017
Avoid The Glare of Harsh Winter Sunlight While Driving

The low winter sun can hinder your vision when driving, at times making it impossible to get a full view of the road ahead. Don’t believe that wearing sunglasses at this time of year is silly – they are in fact an essential safety tool for any driver all year round. While they don’t provide perfect vision, they are a good first step to safe driving in the sun’s glare.

Grime on the inside or outside of your windscreen can refract and scatter bright light, intensifying the glare. A clean windscreen is much easier to see through whatever the weather, but especially when you are facing sunlight. It is advisable that you clean your windshield before your trip. Using wiper fluid can leave drops on the screen, which also reflects the sun, making it harder to drive until they dry up.

Your car’s sun visor is there to help reduce glare. In addition, you can increase its effectiveness with mini-visors available in most motor shops. Some are transparent, which helps to filter out glare while still allowing the driver to see through.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 23, 2017
12m Motorists Receive Penalty Notice Every Year

As the number of fixed cameras in the UK rises, nearly 12 million motorists receive a penalty notice each year. The RAC Foundation has collected data from fixed penalty notices issued for violating motoring law, and civil penalties, often issued for parking offences.

Their findings revealed that between 2015-2016 there were approximately 8 million local authority penalties, 2.5 million local authority bus lane and box junction penalties, 500,000 late licensing and insurance penalties and 1 million speeding and red light penalties.

A Criminology lecturer at Liverpool Hope University suggested that the figure of 12 million would reflect a small rise of about 1.5% on the previous year.

“There’s not really been that much change on top line levels, but what is changing is we are getting slightly more cameras,” he reported. There are also more cars on the road, with almost one car for every driver in the UK.

In 2015, 90% of all speeding offences were caught on camera. Between 2010 and 2014 the number of traffic police officers dropped by 24%. This reduction coincided with a period of falling costs for automatic enforcement technology.

A member of the RAC Foundation stated that while traffic offences should warrant necessary punishment, many motorists are being caught for minor wrongdoings while more serious offences go undetected.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 22, 2017
Petition Launched Against “Dangerous” New Test Manoeuvre

A driving instructor has launched a petition calling for a new manoeuvre to be removed from the UK driving test, because he believes it to be dangerous. The new manoeuvre requires the learner driver to pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse for two car lengths and re-join the traffic.

It is suggested that the manoeuvre contradicts the Highway Code, which states that drivers should never park facing against the flow of traffic.

“I think the move is dangerous because not only does it mean you’re moving across oncoming traffic, you’re moving over two lanes. You’ve got to remember that these are inexperienced drivers who are being faced with a manoeuvre that I personally rarely use, and is also against the Highway Code. I just think it’s unnecessary,” the driving instructor who launched the petition reports.

However, the Deputy Chief Driving Examiner at the DVSA, said that the new manoeuvre is designed to reflect how well people cope behind the wheel and ensure that they have the knowledge and skills to carry out the manoeuvre safely, which is why it is included.

According to the DVSA the new test has been trialled by more than 4,300 leaners, while a consultation showed that 78.6% of motorists agreed with plans to change how manoeuvres are tested. The petition has over 2,300 signatures. What are your thoughts on the new manoeuvre?

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 21, 2017
Shocking Road Rage Incident in Sussex

An off-duty police officer had no choice but to wrestle a raging motorist to the ground after he began spouting aggressively and lunged at another driver through his window.

The video captured on the A27 Sompting bypass in Worthing, Sussex, shows the man targeting a driver as he sat behind the wheel of his car in a row over “slow” driving.

The off-duty Sussex police officer detained the man as he tried to drive away from the scene. After a long tussle the cop managed to stop the man by wrestling him to the ground and holding him until another officer arrived at the scene.

During the incident other drivers repeatedly told the man to stop. However, he continued to act aggressively even after the officer showed him his police warrant card.

The man was eventually given a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, and fined for his actions. According to the report, he also admitted using threatening words or behaviour likely to cause distress and resisting a police constable.

A shocking eight out of ten motorists admit they have fallen victim to road rage in the past year. Try and avoid falling victim to it yourself by staying calm; move over if someone is tailgating you. Use an “I’m sorry” gesture (e.g. wave) to attempt to defuse the situation. Plan ahead; allow time for delays during your journey. Consider whether you’ve done something to annoy the other driver and adjust your driving accordingly.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 20, 2017
Applying Make-up Behind the Wheel

Nearly 50% of female drivers apply make-up behind the wheel, being the result of up to 450,000 car accidents a year.

43% of women have admitted to putting make-up on while driving on their daily commute – most commonly applied at traffic lights or in traffic jams. While they realise the dangers, they continue to do it anyway. Statistics reveal that only 5% of women don’t wear any make-up for work.

Women are often thought of as being able to multi-task better than men, but there are times when they should undertake one task and one alone – driving.

The MD of the Women’s Insurer was reported in the news saying, “Is your mascara more important than yours and other road users’ safety? Even if you’re lucky enough to arrive at your destination safely, you could be charged with careless driving if spotted by the police.

“Women are generally great at doing more than one thing at once but this is definitely one area where multi-tasking should not be practiced.”

Any form of distracted driving is highly dangerous and could lead to the driver, any passengers and road users involved, suffering severe injuries or even death.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 16, 2017
Correctly Hold Your Steering Wheel

Holding your steering wheel correctly is an essential safety precaution you should bear in mind every time you get behind the wheel. When taking your driving test, the instructor will be observing your body position and motions while you are driving. One key aspect they will be looking for is proper placement of your hands on the steering wheel.

Drivers who use the correct technique to hold their steering wheel are a lot less likely to have an accident and will be able to use their vehicle more efficiently. Even experienced drivers should be conscious of their posture, body position, and hand placement while driving.

Both hands should be placed out of the steering wheel on opposite sides. Your grip should be firm, yet gentle. Use your fingers instead of the palms of your hands and keep your thumbs up along the face of the steering wheel. Never turn the wheel while gripping it from the inside.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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November 15, 2017
In the Event That You Hit an Animal With Your Vehicle…

The idea of accidentally hitting an innocent animal on the road is not nice at all. Unfortunately however, it happens more often than we’d like to think – so here is some useful information to help you know how best to handle the situation.

First of all, stay calm; take deep breaths and remain in control of the situation. If you stop, make sure it’s safe to do so and you’re not causing danger to yourself or other road users.

The law requires that you should report to the police immediately if you hit a dog, a horse, cattle, sheep and goats, donkeys, mules and pigs. If you hit another type of animal, such as a cat or a fox, you are not required by law to report it but you should still act accordingly. Don’t leave a creature suffering; there’s a chance you might be able to save its life.

When approaching an injured animal, it will very likely be in distress and might even try to attack you. If the animal is having a seizure do not attempt to stop it and keep your hands away from its mouth in case it bites you. If you realise you have hit someone’s pet, you should try and find a way to get hold of the owner’s details. The animal could very likely be microchipped, or live close to the scene.

If you are unable to trace the animal’s owner, you should report the accident to the police within 24 hours. They should have a list of vets that can help, should the injured animal require urgent care. You should get an idea of how badly hurt it is. If the creature is moveable, take it to the nearest vet immediately.

As mentioned before, your actions could make a difference between life and death.

Safe driving from Britannia!

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