Monthly Archives: October 2015

October 30, 2015
Driving with the Lights On

There is a lot written, especially in more recent years, in regards to safety on the roads and when behind the wheel. From driving at the correct speeds to the active practise of good driving habits, safety in cars is clearly a priority for most.

However one little known fact that could save lots of people from unnecessary accidents is a very simple one – Maximise your visibility to other drivers to increase the chance of them seeing you long before any incident occurs. The way to do this you ask? Simply switch on your headlights.

Whilst headlights are a requirement for driving in the dark, it is also a good idea to use them in the day too, to prevent any unfortunate occurrences.

Safe driving from Britannia!


October 29, 2015
Convicted AA Instructor Picked Children Up From School Gates

It was reported in MailOnline recently that a paedophile driving instructor filmed himself sexually abusing children in the back of his AA car after picking them up from the school gates.

The former AA instructor, Matthew Ottley, lured two children into his vehicle after befriending the at the school gates. He would then drive them to a remote country lane and abuse them, according to the article published last week. Ottley pleaded guilty to two charges of sexual activity with a child and arranging or facilitating child prostitution or pornography at Maidstone Crown Court. He was also charged with two counts relating to filming the episodes over a four-day period last November.

Ottley was released on bail until sentencing next month. According to the CPS, a further three counts of abuse would remain on file after Ottley denied the charges.

According to MailOnline, Ottley’s own driving school (I Drive Safely)’s website boasts of nearly 20 years professional driving experience with ‘a 100% pass rate’ and say they specialised in ‘helping particularly nervous pupils.’

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


October 28, 2015
Blind Man Fulfils Driving Dream

An 88-year-old blind man has fulfilled a lifelong ambition to drive a car. John Cramond from Stranraer, South Scotland, lost his sight as a young boy and never had the opportunity to get behind the wheel until last weekend.

He mentioned his dream of driving a car to Leonard Cheshire Disability volunteer co-ordinator Bill Milven. He approached driving instructor James Edgar who has a dual control vehicle and together they hatched a plan to allow Mr Cramond the chance to drive.

Last Saturday morning Edgar took Mr Cramond to a war-time airstrip near Stranraer where he spent an hour behind the wheel. He proved to be a speedy learner and stated he was buzzing with excitement all day and couldn’t wait to tell his family.

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


October 27, 2015
Drive for Traffic – Not Road Signs

Being a driver in the modern world presents a variety of challenges – From firstly mastering the ability to drive as a learner, all the way to developing a comprehensive understanding of road signs – Indeed, the independent driving section of the driving test requires you to be able to follow road signs adequately enough to drive without instructions for a portion of the exam.

However some road users say that too much reliance on road signs can be dangerous – With many drivers, particularly those with less experience, opting to blindly follow the instructions of any road sign despite any evidence around them to do the opposite – Choosing to disregard the information the traffic gives them in place of following a static rule on a sign – For example stopping to give way to oncoming vehicles, although there is clearly no vehicle approaching in the foreseeable future.

The best way to drive is to follow both – Always take road signs into account, but don’t let them tell you exactly how to drive.

Safe driving from Britannia!


October 26, 2015
Van Bully Fired

A white van man who was caught on camera driving aggressively behind a learner driver during her test has been sacked.

In the footage, the van driver was seen to race up behind on the learner during her test. He then repeatedly pulled up close to her rear bumper, threw up his hands, accelerated sharply, honked his horn and revved his engine.

But the driver stated he had been dismissed from his job and deeply regretted the incident, tearfully admitting that he wanted to meet the woman to apologise for his behaviour.

The 56-year-old said he had been under pressure to make a delivery and that he ‘just lost it’. He said that he made a mistake that day and had been trying to make up time. He admitted that he didn’t mean it and that it was his fault.

The driver also revealed that he planned to carry out an Advanced Driving Course to prove that he was willing to learn from his mistakes.

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


October 23, 2015
Driving Test Passing

When it comes to the driving test, there is much more to passing and becoming a qualified driver than just knowing how to operate a car – The test will take several factors into consideration to review whether you are competent to be behind the wheel, such as:

– Eyesight: Your eyesight will be checked before the test begins by asking you to read a number plate from a distance. If you fail this section, you will not be allowed to begin the test.

– Car knowledge: The “show me, tell me” section requires that you correctly identify two features of the car, from the dip stick to checking that the horn is working.

It is also important to prepare well for the test, so make sure you get a good night sleep beforehand and that you keep yourself calm during the day – And you will be fine!

Safe driving from Britannia!


October 22, 2015
Parents To Get Involved in Children’s lessons

Parents are being urged to sit in on their children’s driving lessons to stop themselves from undoing the work of professional instructors. Learners could be hampered if their parents give them private tuition without understanding the current test and ongoing changes set by the DVSA.

Instructors are now being urged to give learners more autonomy over what skills they want to develop in a lesson, while new driving tests are being trialled which involve the use of sat navs and manoeuvres that are more relevant to real-life driving.

The DVSA state that learning to drive is changing – it’s not about vehicle control, it’s wider aspects. Parents also need to understand what ADIs are being encouraged to do, so that they work with them and not against them and actually undo some of the work that’s being done.

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


October 21, 2015
Back To The Future Day

October 21st 2015 is the date that Marty McFly visited in Back to the Future Part 2. The film’s time machine was the DeLorean DMC-12, did the car stand the test of time?

Production of the car had ceased in 1983 and so its number was already well and truly up by the time the films were released. Far from the planned 30,000 cars per year rolling out of the purpose-built factory in Dunmurry, Northern Ireland, just 9,200 had been made in total, many of them with disappointing quality and not one of them according to the revolutionary ideas of the company’s founder John Z DeLorean.

Although the DeLorean that came to market in 1981 looked superficially similar to the prototype that was first fired up in 1976, it was actually a very different beast. The unique stainless steel body and distinctive gull-wing doors remained (the motive for it being chosen for the Back To The Future films) but its engine was now mounted behind the rear axle line instead of ahead of it.

After initially strong sales, the combination of its high price ($25,000), poor performance and critical reception saw demand turn down, a position from which the car would never recover.

Today, the stainless steel panels remained but the inside is terribly dated.

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


October 20, 2015
Details on the Driving Test

Many young and learner drivers have heard lots of information about the practical driving test – From how nerve-racking it can be in the run up to the test, to the best ways to prepare for the test – But time after time, examiners are baffled by how little many candidates actually know about what to expect in the driving test.

Those who carry out their research into the expectations of the driving test stand a much higher chance of success – For example, the test does not only consist of driving safely on the roads, but you will also need to pass an eyesight check and a “show me, tell me” module before entering the car.

As with all examinations, the more you prepare, the better your chance of passing.

Safe driving from Britannia!


October 19, 2015
Fall in Convictions For Using A Mobile Whilst Driving

The number of motorists being prosecuted for using their mobile phone while driving has fallen by almost 50%, according to official figures seen by the RAC.

Prosecutions have come down by 47% between 2009 and 2014.

The fall comes despite figures from the Department for Transport (DfT) showing a persistent number of drivers are still using their phone at the wheel – highlighting a worrying mismatch between what motorists see happening on our roads and what drivers are being prosecuted for.

A motorist caught using a mobile phone is most likely to receive a fixed penalty notice (FPN) from a police officer, as there is currently no technology in use by police forces that automatically detects illegal use. Between 2011 and 2013, the number of FPNs handed to drivers dropped from 123,100 to 52,400 – a fall of 57%.

New figures show prosecutions for offences related to mobile phone use at the wheel have also fallen sharply. In 2014, 17,414 prosecutions were made in magistrates’ courts in England and Wales, which is 15,157 fewer than in 2009. A motorist may be summoned to a magistrates’ court if they ignore or choose to challenge a fixed penalty notice, if they already carry too many points, or if the offence is deemed too serious for a fixed penalty.

The fall is despite figures from the DfT indicating a relatively unchanged percentage of car drivers using phones at the wheel.

Mobile phone use is increasingly a contributory factor in accidents in the UK – in 2014, 492 accidents were as a result of a driver using a phone, up 40% on 2010.

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below: