Kids driving lessons - leaving car in gear when at traffic lights.

Ger1966

Registered User
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110
My daughter is doing driving lessons and I'm also bringing her out between lessons. One thing that she's doing - and is really annoying me - is that when she's stopped at traffic lights, she pulls the hand brake up and leaves the car in gear with the clutch down.

We've had "discussions" (i.e. arguments) about this. My point is that if her foot slips off the clutch, then she'll rear end the car in front. She's saying that her instructor told her to do this because she could be marked down if she's slow to take off.

Is the driving instructor correct?
 

Sue Ellen

Moderator.
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3 things

From my days of learning (not today nor yesterday :) ) I understood too that you were meant to take the car out of gear and put the handbrake on

Not sure if its called AutoSave but in newer cars aren't you meant to do all of these things and the engine cuts out to save fuel until you hit the pedal to move off again

But if the handbrake is on and in good working order surely it would stop her from hitting the car in front as it should stop the car from jerking/moving forward
 

Páid

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858
I believe the modern way is that if you are first in line at the traffic light you should be in first gear with your foot on the clutch and the handbrake on.
 

bstop

Registered User
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416
So the modern way is to bypass the automatic engine stop and cause unnecessary air pollution in crowded cities and increased environmental damage. They should teach the learners faster foot and arm control. It should only take a fraction of a second to depress the clutch and engage 1st gear.
 

AlbacoreA

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3,994
The solution is not to be slow to take off, by watching the light sequence and have turned on the engine, by creeping or whatever.

We have an auto with stop/start and its slow to start off, unless you turn it off, or by creeping. We have a manual in a similar car, same engine, but manual and no stop start and there's a huge different is how fast it moves off with the same driver.
 

Mick22

Registered User
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I drive a Ford Kuga automatic and switch off the stop start as often as I think about it. The split second delay when leaving a stop is disconcerting. Also I have had to replace battery after 3 years ...The switch is on the right of the tailgate switch and the default position is On.
 

Clamball

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494
My kids driving instructors told them to ignore the advice of their parents because things have moved on from their time. So I would let it go. Apparently you don’t need to have your hands at the 10 to 2 position anymore or not cross your hands over each other when turning the wheel as all cars now have power steering.

Plus position on the road seems to be changed, I was always told to stay left in a lane but they are now told to stay closer to the centre line. Driving in the day with lights is now recommended but it wasn’t mentioned back in my day.

There may be something in getting re-certified with a new driving test every few years given the new technologies in cars.
 

AlbacoreA

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Have to say I don't agree with some of this stuff. The 10 to 2 was never about strength it was about not crossing your arms and having to release your grip and shuffle mid turn. Once you start rolling in a car without power steering it goes light enough to turn. if you need to strength to turn a wheel its generally stopped and you need both hands on the same side. Its like pushing or pulling a rope. This stuff was invented by someone who'd never done it. Then repeated Ad nauseam across the web. Eventually the trend sticks.

They say now its safer because if your hands are across the wheel or at the top then the airbag can launch your hand at your face. I don't get that either because at 10 to 2 your hands are not over the airbag. No one racing a car uses 8 and 4 and you don't shuffle your hand position. You use 9 and 3. That should say all you need know about that.

Not that it matters. you drive the way the test wants you, to past the test. Few people drive like they do in the test in the real world. You could argue which is right all day. But one doesn't represent the other.
 
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AlbacoreA

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3,994
You are correct. But she is more likely to kill or seriously injure a pedestrian who is crossing the road.

I'd love to know are they any stats on which is more likely. I would assume hitting a car in front is a lot more common than killing someone.
 

Gordon Gekko

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6,339
I remember my son being told by his instructor not to rush off at traffic lights because far too many people go through red lights these days. I always remember that now when I'm at lights because it is so true especially with Irish drivers/cyclists.
Yes, you see quite a lot of cars breaking the lights even quite a bit after your lights have turned green.
 

AlbacoreA

Registered User
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3,994
Yes, you see quite a lot of cars breaking the lights even quite a bit after your lights have turned green.
That's like the old joke...

A man hails a cab, gets in, gives directions and gets going.
Sitting in the back seat, he sees as the cabbie just blows the red light.
Maybe this was accidental” he thought.
Driver runs through another red light.
The man gets all worried and asks “Excuse me, didn’t you just blow 2 red lights in a row?!”.
Don’t worry, I’m a professional” cabbie replies.
There’s a green light at the next intersection and the driver just stops at the light.
The man get all confused and frustrated and yells out ” I don’t understand this! How come you blow red lights and you just stop on the green?!”
The taxi driver replies: “I stopped because there might be another professional crossing the intersection.”
 
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