Should learners be taught ‘how to avoid potholes’ in their driving test?
There was a call on the government this week to include the spotting of potholes to be included in the hazard perception test for learners, and one of our driving instructors, Dave Dunsford, has been chatting with BBC Radio 4 presenter Jonny Dymond, about his view on ‘The Pothole Challenge’.
You can listen to the full interview here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b85m1b
At RED Driving School, we disagree with the call to class potholes as hazards in the perception test. We understand that potholes can cause extreme damage to vehicles and, in some cases, accidents, but introducing these to the hazard perception test will never be able to simulate the real life hazards that motorists encounter. We can’t imagine that the DVSA will create clips of potholes in the road to test learners, so how else will they be able to prepare Britain’s learners?! We believe that all drivers who are taught well will adopt a ‘common sense approach’ to road surface hazards.
We teach our learners to observe and respond safely to hazards and this includes looking out for potholes. This observation is the most important thing we can teach to avoid potholes. As long as learners are driving at an appropriate speed and are alert and aware of their surroundings, the impact of potholes should be minimal.
It was also reported that tests have been abandoned because of pothole issues, but as one of the UK’s largest driving school, we are not aware of tests being abandoned.
The advice from everyone here at RED Driving School is; look ahead to anticipate any pothole problems! If you spot one, steer around it as long as that doesn’t cause a risk to any other road user. If it is too risky to avoid the pothole, adjust the speed and drive over the pothole as slowly as possible to reduce the risk of damage to your car and tyres.