How to improve your cornering
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Learning to drive

Observation

When you’re learning to drive it’s easy to get caught up in what’s happening inside your car. But try to remember that what’s happening outside of your vehicle is a lot more important.

You also need to be just as aware of what’s happening behind you as you are of what’s in front of you, and there's only one way to do that.

When to use your mirrors

When you’re taking your test, your examiner will want to be sure that you’re using your mirrors. It is one of THE MOST important things to remember and a top reason for failing.

You don’t need to overact it and hurt your neck making sure they’ve seen you. They’ve done this loads and they’ll know whether you’re looking or not.

P.S. It took me 6 months to grasp the concept of checking my left mirror before coming off a roundabout. You'll get it.

Get in the habit of checking your mirrors right from your very first lesson and it’ll be second nature by the time you take your test.

Use your mirrors when you’re:

  • Moving off
  • Stopping your car
  • Signalling
  • Changing direction or reversing
  • Turning in the road
  • Overtaking or changing lanes
  • Slowing down
  • Opening your car door

Keeping yourself safe

Making sure that you’re always aware of what’s happening in front of and behind your car is the ultimate way of keeping yourself, your passengers and other road users safe.

Think about the other drivers around you. Even if you’re driving perfectly, you can’t always anticipate what might happen: all you can do is be watchful and ready to react.

Your mirrors can help you see:

  • Cyclists or pedestrians pulling up next to you
  • Motorcycles coming up from behind that might overtake
  • Vehicles that may want to overtake you
  • Emergency vehicles that need to pass you
  • Children, cats, blockades, carnivals…

This is why it’s so important to check your mirrors are in the right position every time you get in your car.

Remember that if you start on a hill, adjusting your mirrors won’t help you - they’ll be wrong as soon as the road flattens!

Checking that you can see exactly what you need to in each of your mirrors means that you don’t need to worry about it once you get on the road.

 

Find out more about when and how to use your mirrors to stay safe and legal.


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Honor joined ingenie in 2014 and is in charge of words on the Young Driver's Guide and blog. Her first car is a Peugeot 206 cabriolet, which is a very sensible choice for the British climate. Follow her on .