Why Don’t You Use Manual Vehicles for the Safer Drivers Course?

A common question we get asked is, “Can I drive a manual for the Safer Drivers Course?”
In short our response is, “it is not recommended”.

There are several reasons why we don’t provide manual vehicles for the Safe Drivers Course and we will explain why.

The Safer Drivers Course or otherwise commonly known to some as the 20 hour driving course, was created to develop awareness of safe driving behaviours in young vulnerable drivers aged 17 to 25. In order to do this, learners need to listen carefully and focus on what the coaches are teaching them during the practical driving component of the course (Module 2). In Module 2, each learner driver will take turns to practice low-risk driving strategies that were also covered in the classroom component of the Safer Drivers Course (Module 1).

These low-risk driving strategies allow learners to demonstrate all the aspects of low-risk driving. This includes being able to maintain a 3 second safe following distance, identifying and responding to hazards, interacting with other vehicles and pedestrians, planning ahead, slowing down in minimal vision situations and safe gap selection. The Module 2 coach will constantly offer safety tips and advice in varying
situations. This advice requires learners to go on and continually practice building on their skills.

Auto Drivers Who Do Not Drive Manual Vehicles

Learner drivers learning to drive in automatic vehicles, would not be able to safely operate manual vehicles for the Safer Drivers Course. However, on the other hand, learner drivers learning to drive in a manual vehicle, are able to drive both. These days, majority of learners are sitting the driving test in automatic vehicles. This can make it difficult to find more than one learner at any one time in a Safer Drivers Course. The course requires two (2) learners and a coach for the Module 2 component.

Too Much Focus on the Clutch & Gears

Learn Drive Survive SDC coaches want every learner driver to listen to and absorb as much information as possible provided by our experienced coaches. As many driving instructors would agree, majority of learners taking driving lessons, place a lot of emphasis on worrying about clutch control when moving off or looking down at the gear stick when preparing to change up or down through the gears.

This takes away from everything else that’s going on around them meaning that whatever the coach is explaining may be ignored. This may not be intentional but because the learners focus is on operating the clutch and gears, they may have missed important safety advice.

Some learners start off learning to drive in an automatic vehicle and then decide later to change over to a manual vehicle. The problem is they may have only had a limited number of hours practice in a manual and their limited experience and co-ordination is still in its infancy.

The 20 Hour Safer Drivers Course is not about learning how to drive. It’s also not about learning how to park or doing any driving test manoeuvres such as how to reverse park. It’s a coaching session. Driver attitude and effective observation skills of young in-experienced drivers are more crucial to safer driving than car handling skills. This is why the we don’t use manual vehicles for the Safe Drivers Course with Learn Drive Survive SDC and only use auto vehicles.

Book the 20 Hour Safer Drivers Course

If you would like to learn strategies to become a safer driver and receive an additional 20 logbook hours upon completion of the SDC, book a course today. To be eligible for the 20 hour Safe Drivers Course with Learn Drive Survive, you must hold a current NSW learner licence, be under 25 years of age and have reached 50 hours of driving in your logbook (excluding 3 for 1 bonus hours).

To book a course, visit Learn Drive SDC using our simple online Safer Drivers Course booking system or call our friendly staff on 1800 898 969.

Learn to Drive with Learn Drive Survive

Booking professional driving lessons with Learn Drive Survive is the best way to start learning to drive. Taking advice from a qualified and experienced driving instructor, helps make the best of your driving lessons.

Regardless if you get you licence in a manual or automatic vehicle, learning to drive can be fun. For driving lessons on the Central Coast, Lake Macquarie, Newcastle and the Hunter, please call 1800 898 969. To book online visit Learn Drive Survive. 

manual vehicles for the safer drivers course
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