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What Will I Learn?

In a nutshell
All advanced drivers aim to be:

Safe, but not bored
Positive, but not aggressive
Relaxed, but not casual


We want to help you develop

Observation skills
Anticipation
Driving plans


Especially we're looking for

Good road positioning
Selection of the right gear at the right time
Appropriate acceleration
Appropriate speed

These will result in a drive that's

Safe
Systematic
Smooth and Progressive

Don't be daunted - Focus on

Using your learning aids
Listening to and acting on your observer's advice
Enjoying your riding (very important!).




So What Are The Benefits Of Advanced Driving Training?

Our celebrated "Skills for Life" programme will benefit you in many different ways:

Increased Driving Ability and Safety:

Many of the hazards that road conditions and other road users cause drivers, can be managed. In some cases they can even be completely avoided providing the driver has the necessary knowledge to identify and react to the risks correctly. Having this ability and knowledge will not only make you a safer driver, but will also increase your enjoyment of it due to the resulting rise in confidence.

Reduced Insurance Premiums:

Many insurance companies give reductions in their premiums for drivers who have completed advanced driving training. They recognise that by going on the course you will be aware of, and know how to avoid many of the most common causes of vehicle accidents.

Economy:

One aspect of advanced riding that many people overlook is how to drive economically. Driving well isn't just about being able to remain in control at high speeds. Understanding how your car works and how to drive it, so that it makes the most of your fuel and tyres is a very useful skill that will save you a lot of money over time. This is an area, which is often covered in advanced car training courses, and an aspect, which many find very useful.

So there is no reason to put it off! Taking advanced vehicle training will improve the way you drive, and how much you enjoy driving.

For most of us that is something that will benefit us for many years to come. Putting it off is simply depriving yourself of that enjoyment.

When you take the decision that you want to take advanced car training, you need to make sure that it is the right one.

Doing It Right

It is widely accepted that becoming a ‘Police Class One Rider’ is the highest accolade afforded to a rider. Just watching videos of these experts in action, seemingly gliding through congested traffic safely but whilst making good progress, is a sight to behold!

Just like police riders, we also follow "The System", as explained in Roadcraft the Police Driver’s Handbook to Better Driving’ which is available from the IAM, priced around £12 and highly recommended for further developing your advanced Driving skills




Preparation For Your Test

 

How Shropshire Advanced Motorists and Motorcyclists will get you through your test.

Once you have signed up for a Skill For Life course, you will make contact with the Group who will appoint an Observer (an IAM-qualified driving coach). Your Observer will help you prepare for the test and he or she will be chosen to give you someone who is as close as possible to your location while best suiting the kind of driving that you want to experience on the course.

It's then up to you and your new Observer to arrange times to go out on your observed runs at times best suited to you both.

You will then undertake some observed runs until it is decided that you are test ready. An application will be made to the national IAM to book your examiner and test date, and in the period before the test you will go out on a pre test drive with an alternative Observer to check that there is nothing that has been overlooked.

What the Examiner Wants

What the examiner will expect to see on your test

The following are some points the examiner expects to see during your test. All of these things will be covered by your observer during your observed runs.

Safe

Safety always overrides any other aspects of driving. Without the safety aspect, there would be no need for the IAM Test. Advanced driving is about improving driver safety and education. Even where optimum progress may be desirable, position and speed must always be put aside and sacrificed for safety. Examiners have a policy of, "If you put the car in danger, you fail". Safety is the most important aspect for any road user to achieve and is the real reason why the IAM Test should be undertaken.

 

Systematic

Advanced drivers use a way of driving called "The System" which is derived from the Police "Roadcraft" system of car control. The System of Car Control is a way of driving that allows the driver to approach all situations and negotiate all hazards in a methodical and flexible way that leaves nothing to luck or chance, therefore it will be safe. The driver throughout their guidance will be shown and guided using the System of Car Control which the IAM has used successfully since 1956. Using this system allows them to use all their skills to deal with any environment or situation, in enough time to decide on the best position, speed and gear of the vehicle to negotiate hazards safely.

 

Smoothness

If the driver uses the System of Car Control efficiently then their handling skills can be properly co-ordinated, along with observation. The drive should also be smooth, as well as safe and systematic. Every move the driver makes should be in good time, allowing them to make best use their skills. The vehicle should be stable with little bounce or roll on the road and any passengers should be comfortable in the vehicle and have the utmost confidence in the driver's ability. Nothing the driver does should look or feel rushed or hurried, resulting in an economical use of fuel as well.

 

Progress

Frequently incorrectly translated to mean Speed, this is the ability to make good progress when safe to do so and is an important skill that an advanced driver should possess. Remember, SAFETY should NEVER be compromised, even though progress may be used to give a brisk drive, it may only be used when safe and appropriate to do so. Any excessive speed above the statutory speed limit, or the use of speed inappropriate for the circumstances regardless of any limi,t is dangerous and unacceptable. It must be remembered that speed limits are exactly that. Limits - not targets. Advanced drivers use their skill and awareness to decide when they should impose their own restraints, below the statutory speed limits depending on the circumstances.

 

Restraint

The ability to recognise when to hold back from particular hazards to ensure the safety and reassurance of passengers and other road users, or to avoid causing others concern, even if this concern may be unjustified. Advanced drivers learn this skill through practice improving their ability to foresee the outcome of potential danger.

 

What the Examiner looks for

The Examiner is looking at the whole drive. IAM Examiners do not search for faults alone. They are trained to search for positive aspects as well as negative. The Examiner will be honest and forthright regarding your overall ability and looks for the confident application and competence in all aspects of the drive. If all the above criteria are met, the drive should exhibit the qualities of a safe, systematic, smooth, progressive, and balanced drive. The driver ensures that the vehicle is always in the right place on the road, travelling at the right speed, in the right gear for the speed, and they can always stop the vehicle safely in the distance that can be seen to be clear.


 

The Advanced Test

An Overview of the Advanced Driving Test

Recognising that the majority of collisions are caused by driver error, the IAM’s Advanced Driving Test was introduced with the specific objective of significantly improving driving standards using the principles of Advanced Driving - pioneere and applied with great success – by the Metropolitan Police.

To date, over 350,000 people have taken the Advanced Test, and of these over 300,000 have passed and gone on to become IAM Members.

The Advanced Driving Test lasts for about 90 minutes and will usually cover between 30 and 40 miles along all types of road, town driving, motorways (if available) or dual carriageways, and even country lanes.

Your Examiner will hold a Police Advanced Driving certificate and will have extensive experience from working within sections of the Police Services throughout the UK.

The Test gives a thorough workout of driving ability, allowing the candidate to alter their drive according to the conditions and environment of the road. The types of road vary from quiet country roads, motorways, to busy town centres.

In each case there are hazards and situations that need to be avoided and taken care of using the methods and techniques that advanced driving gives. There may be situations where the candidate can show flair and panache on an open country road, where progress can be gained at maximum safety, using optimum road positioning and excellent observation. All this combines to give a brisk, smooth drive, at the legal limits, on the open road.

In other situations, the candidate will need to show restraint and composure in dealing with tricky hazards that may become apparent throughout the drive. Such as, in a town centre situation, where observation is used to pick out hazards and where conditions are constantly changing. The main objective is that the candidate has to perform well in all situations rather than excel in one.

People often comment on the Test after taking it about how much they enjoyed the drive. On the Test, the candidate gets to show the new skills that they have been practising during the weeks of their course. The Advanced Driving Test IS NOT EASY but IS within the reach of all vehicle users given the right guidance, and a pass is always something to be proud of.


 

Afterwards - Advanced Driving and beyond


When you pass your advanced test, please let your Observer and the Membership Secretary know as soon as possible. You will become a full member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists and a full member of SAMM. All social events are open to you, before and after passing the test.

You may also wish to become an Observer yourself and help others to pass their tests. This can be a very rewarding activity as you can be sure that, by coaching others to become better road users, you are improving their safety and significantly reducing the chances of being killed or seriously injured. SAMM has a structured coaching program to bring riders up to the standard to become a group Observer, sets a high standard for its Observers and is particularly proud of its achievements.

Finally, available to anyone who has passed their test is the IAM Special Assessment; this is the highest level of advanced riding assessment available to a civilian and represents the pinnacle of advanced road skills.

What you can expect from us

Advice, support and honest appraisal

Help to lift your driving standard

Guidance to enable you to reach the IAM standard

What we expect from you

On the Skill for Life course, you must

Practice between runs -- this is essential

Tell your Observer, as early as possible, of any difficulties or concerns

Study the course material as well as the Highway Code

Why Should I Bother?

Research has shown that drivers and riders who have passed their advanced test are 3 to 5 times less likely to have an accident. That sort of improvement alone should be enough to convince you. Your experience on the road will be so much more enjoyable as will that of your passengers

The Boring But Essential Bits

At all times you are responsible for your own riding or driving and its consequences.

You must have a full current licence, current insurance certificate and current MOT if applicable.

Your vehicle must be in good, roadworthy condition.

Have plenty of fuel and be sure oil, tyre pressures, etc, are OK.


 

Free Observed Runs for Under 25s

Shropshire Advanced Motorists and Motorcyclists working in partnership with Shropshire Fire and Rescue can now offer 4 free observed runs for under 25 years of age drivers, living, working or studying in Shropshire

Working in partnership with Shropshire Fire and Rescue, Shropshire Advanced Motorists and Motorcyclists is pleased to be able to offer 5 hours of free training to drivers aged 17-24 who either live, work or study in Shropshire.

This will take the format of 1 hour’s classroom training that would take place in a fire station at locations around the county, and 4x1 hour drives with an Observer from Shropshire Advanced Motorists and Motorcyclists (SAMM).

To reserve a place on a course a £50 deposit is taken. This is only to ensure that places are not wasted and is fully refunded once the 4th observed run has taken place.

During the course the associate will be taught the underlying principles of advanced motoring, and at the end of the four runs the associate has the option to either have the £50 deposit refunded or it is hoped that they will take the option to complete the full course and take their advanced test.

In order to take this option, a £19 payment is taken in addition to the course deposit, making the cost for the complete course £69, a saving of £70 from the normal course price of £139.

For more information or to book on the next course please contact Dec Chebsey on 07703 682407 or email chiefobserver@advancedmotorists.org

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