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Too many lifesavers


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I went out for my last lesson before my test. Forking disaster! I nearly lost the bike at one point. My problems are driving to impress the instructor when I aught to be driving for myself and also unnecessary lifesavers when I aught to be looking ahead and riding the bike. So help me structure myself please.


When turning left:- Mirror, signal, slow for the turn, life saver left, turn. OK?

Going ahead at the lights:- my instructor is saying mirrors only. (or I'm misunderstanding him).

Going ahead at a roundabout:- enter the roundabout, life saver right, signal left. turn left? (I really want to life save left as well).


Obviously there is situational awareness at all times, but I'm talking about specific lifesaver moments.

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Where might the danger be?


Left turn from major to minor road? Maybe a cyclist coming up your inside.


Right turn from major to minor road? The scooter that decided to nip around you as you slowed.


Moving across lanes on a roundabout? That vehicle that drifted into your blind spot unawares whilst you were focused on what was ahead and where your exit was.


Focus on where the danger may be and not trying to impress the examiner. They won't fail you for missing one.... Unless there was something there you should have reacted too.


One thing I focused on in my test was reducing my speed by just a few mph on approach to a hazard. It gives you a few more seconds to assess. Slow in, keen out.

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Round about lifesavers are a funny one. It depends on your position and where the danger can come from. That could be a person on your left as you look to exit, or a person on your right who might be trying to exit into you.

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When turning left:- Mirror, signal, slow for the turn, life saver left, turn. OK?

 

Yes, assuming this is major to minor. For emerging from a junction you should ideally not leave any room for anything to sneak up the inside.

 

Going ahead at the lights:- my instructor is saying mirrors only. (or I'm misunderstanding him).

 

I'd agree with your instructor.

 

Going ahead at a roundabout:- enter the roundabout, life saver right, signal left. turn left? (I really want to life save left as well)

 

I'd change this to enter, signal, lifesafe right, turn


I'd only life safe left if changing lane, but it also depends on the exact layout of the roundabout. The above would be my default starting point though.


Just my opinion, but I hope it helps.

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When turning left:- Mirror, signal, slow for the turn, life saver left, turn. OK?

 

Yes, assuming this is major to minor. For emerging from a junction you should ideally not leave any room for anything to sneak up the inside.

 

Going ahead at the lights:- my instructor is saying mirrors only. (or I'm misunderstanding him).

 

I'd agree with your instructor.

 

Going ahead at a roundabout:- enter the roundabout, life saver right, signal left. turn left? (I really want to life save left as well)

 

I'd change this to enter, signal, lifesafe right, turn


I'd only life safe left if changing lane, but it also depends on the exact layout of the roundabout. The above would be my default starting point though.


Just my opinion, but I hope it helps.

 

Although it was a very long time ago, I was taught to always perform a lifesaver when turning left in case a cyclist or such like jumped off a curb to go through the junction.

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Although it was a very long time ago, I was taught to always perform a lifesaver when turning left in case a cyclist or such like jumped off a curb to go through the junction.

 

I was taught this on CBT but differently on DAS. That was just mirror on left turn unless you are unsure, e.g. Most left turns on normal road unless you have just overtaken a cyclist before turning (which you shouldn't do anyway) there is little chance one is going fast enough to catch you up and undertake you as you turn. Nothing theoretically should be coming up on the inside of you. The unsure bit comes down to you that if it has been stop start traffic coming up to junction or road layout dictates that something may appear then nothing wrong with being sure.


Right turn is different because there could always be a vehicle trying to overtake you so should always be a life saver on right turn.


Roundabouts are opposite left lifesaver as you come off a right turn and right lifesaver when you do left turn, felt confusing when briefed how to do it, seemed natural doing it as that was where traffic was coming from.

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Don't overthink it - just have a quick glance when something could be there. I did that and passed clean. So that's, like, proof... or something.

 

One other thing my instructor said was no-one has written a book yet with a definitive list of when you should and shouldn't do them, everyone has different methods.

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Don't overthink it - just have a quick glance when something could be there. I did that and passed clean. So that's, like, proof... or something.

 

One other thing my instructor said was no-one has written a book yet with a definitive list of when you should and shouldn't do them, everyone has different methods.

 

Yup. And it's in part because all the exact road layouts and situations are not the same.


I was told you won't necessarily fail if you miss one lifesaver.... unless if you had done one you would have spotted something that would have made you act differently.


On the flipside, if the examiner thinks you're just doing half hearted ones because you're trying to impress them they'll pick up on that too.


And of course, just never doing them at all will lead to a fail.


Hence why I think it's better to consider where the danger could be coming from.


The example you ([mention]Via[/mention]) brings up of the slower moving traffic turn left is a valid one. If you've been on a 30mph road out in the countryside and are asked to turn left into a junction, it's unlikely someone has snuck up on your inside. But now imagine that exactly the same junction but now it's in town on a 30mph road, with busier traffic and you're moving a lot slower than the posted speed limit. Someone could easily sneak up unawares.

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I did my DAS recently and what I was taught was:


Turning:

When turning left = Left lifesaver

When turning left = Right lifesaver


Traffic lights:

Going ahead = both IF stopped for a 'significant' amount of time (use your judgement, treat as moving off from parked). If roll through or stop for a few seconds then mirrors only.


Exiting roundabouts:

Single lane = left lifesaver

Dual lane = right lifesaver

Changing lanes = appropriate shoulder


Moving out around obstacles:

right out - left in


The rest of the time its just mirror obs making sure you actually turn your head so the examiner knows you are doing it, you don't need to be looking over your shoulder constantly as 90% of danger will come from in front of you.

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