Advanced driver training
A simulator-based or in-car training course may help improve your proficiency on the road. Whether it's to brush up on your wet weather driving skills or to correct bad habits, these popular programs have a lot to offer drivers, irrespective of age and experience.
Driving simulators allow you to experience adverse situations without putting yourself or anyone else in danger. For example, in a simulator you can play around with stopping distances and make mistakes consequence-free. At the click of a mouse, simulator driving conditions can be dark, bright, wet, dry, foggy, icy or congested - pretty much anythingi! And a simulator can take you from city scenarios to open roads without the student travelling at all.
Simulator sessions are ideal for nervous or new drivers who are keen on improving their driving skills. There are a range of companies that offer simulator services. DriverSafety's simulator is a portable unit that features a driving cockpit, real-time vehicle telemetry to assess driver performance and reaction processes, immersive driving scenarios developed to match real Australian road conditions, and moreii. Tag Systems' Real Car Simulators allow the trainee to drive a real car in a virtual world. The car is mounted on sensor-connected rollers that keep the vehicle stationary but transmit information to the simulator. All of the car's components including the engine, transmission, brakes and cabin controls are functionaliii.
In-car driving courses
There are also advanced, post-licence in-car courses out there for you to take your driving skills to the next level or to learn new skills on surfaces or situations you may be unfamiliar with, such as dirt road driving.
Defensive driving courses are widely available. These can cover aspects such as how both the driver's attitude to driving and awareness of surroundings can impact safety. Vehicle control techniques are also often taught in advanced driver training, such as emergency braking, skid prevention and control and how to manage understeer and oversteer.
And if you are eager to have skills to drive a specific vehicle model, check to see if the car manufacturer has a training program to help you make the transition. BMW has developed its very own program, BMW Driver Training, sponsored by Allianz Australia, to help you master the technical skills required to drive its cars.
Before signing up to a course, ensure that you're taking lessons from an accredited driving instructor or school. It's a requirement in many states and territories that driving instructors hold a Driving Instructor licenceiv,v,vi. Check with your State or Territory for the necessary requirements of schools and instructors before signing up to an advanced driving training course.
Learning to drive
Whether you're just learning to drive or an existing licence holder wanting to brush up on a few skills, it's never too late to develop or improve your driving. Advanced training programs like those mentioned above are dedicated to providing a safe environment where students can work on driving proficiency.
While driving skills can help you handle difficult on-road situations, accidents do happen. In the event of damage to your car or third party property, car insurance can help you out. Visit us online and get a quote in just 2 minutes to see what we can do for you and your car.
i TAG SYSTEMS, Driver Training, http://www.tagsystems.com.au/driver_training.html
ii Driver Safety, Driving Simulator, http://www.driversafety.com.au/p-driving-simulator-7.aspx
iii TAG SYSTEMS, Tag Systems Real Car Simulators, http://www.tagsystems.com.au/
iv NSW Government: Transport - Roads & Maritime Services, New Instructors, http://www.rms.nsw.gov.au/roads/licence/index.html
v Government of South Australia, Motor driving instructor's licence, http://www.sa.gov.au/subject/Transport,+travel+and+motoring/Transport+industry+services/Driving+instructors/Motor+driving+instructor's+licence
vi The Government of Western Australia: Department of Transport, Driving instructor's licence, http://www.transport.wa.gov.au/licensing/20681.asp