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John's Blog Posts

Apotheosis

the_one_that_got_away_award-r2c1290ea4a6147fcae0a8a367dee15f9_8bozs_8byvr_324Every day is a learning day. I had a call today from, an MSA member who is having some problems with his ADI registration he is not currently working in the driver training field and he is struggling to fulfil the requirement to attend for a standards check.

During our conversation he said to me “I’m not that bothered about staying on the ADI register it is hardly the apotheosis of my life.”

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Narcolepsy

drowsy-drivingI have just been asked whether a Driving Instructor can continue to teach after being diagnosed with Narcolepsy.

The answer is that there are no extra medical requirements for driving instructors over those for ordinary drivers. With exception of a slightly increased distance on the number plate reading test.

So if DVLA are satisfied a driving instructor is medically fit to drive then they are ok to instruct. (providing they meet the eyesight test) A person can be fined up to £1,000 if they don’t tell DVLA about a medical condition.

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Bad news for jobsworths

Parking personI’m probably being a bit harsh but I’m sure those council parking attendants get some satisfaction out of their jobs they always seem to be smiling when they’re issuing tickets.

I was shopping in Manchester city centre last year having paid and displayed in an on road parking bay. I was returning to my car when I saw the parking attended place the ticket on the windscreen. “I’m sorry I’m late back but its only two minutes don’t you have any discretion.” I said the attendant replied, with a smile “We allow drivers two minutes, you are three minutes late.” So that was that thirty quid lighter (half the fine because I paid quickly) and I have not been back to shop in the city centre since.

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Why do most crashes happen near home?

The answer is very simple “close to home” is where most people drive most of the

An elderly man in Preston had to be pulled from the wreckage of his car after crashing into his own house. Taken from a report in the Lancashire Evening Post
An elderly man in Preston had to be pulled from the wreckage of his car after crashing into his own house. Taken from a report in the Lancashire Evening Post

time. Therefore most crashes happen close to home.

One survey showed that nearly a third of crashes happen less than a mile from home. Crashing into a parked car was the most common type of collision within a mile of a driver’s home. In this survey just 5% of crashes occurred 26 to 50 miles from home, and 6% at distances of more than 50 miles away.

Of the crashes closest to home, the most common cause after hitting parked vehicles was crashing while driving out of a minor road, followed by reversing into a vehicle and by hitting a wall.

Another study show that only 1% of accidents occur more than 50 miles from home. Most people drive close to their home, which is why

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Give them a Gold Star on their “Driver Record”

Gold StarIt always seemed like common sense to me for learner drivers to keep a record of their progress towards a full driving licence. I guess it was because when I started as an Instructor with BSM we were all encouraged to make a record of our pupils’ progress that the learner kept.

I’m no psychologist, although I have listened to a few over the years, but the theory that someone has to think about a learned behaviour in order for that learning to transfer from the short term memory to the long – and become learned – seems to me to make a lot of sense.

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Do I need to attend for my Standards Check?

DVSA ADI LogoI spoke to a member the other day who asked “do I need to attend for my Standards Check?” of course you do I said unless you have a very good reason to postpone it, why wouldn’t you attend? I went on to state how important the test was to maintain standards and then I went on a bit about the person’s  sense of responsibility and then I went on a bit more.

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Lively start to the year

January-2015-calendarJanuary was a busy month for the MSA, and all my good intentions to blog on a regular basis have fallen by the wayside. When ‘John’s blog’ was launched I said that, “The idea of my writing a blog is to fill in any gaps in the information output from the MSA. It will give me the opportunity to tell people what I’m up to on behalf of MSA and EFA.”

I’ll try and fill in some of the gaps here.

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I’m trying to be nicer

Towards the end of last year I was invited along with a number of others, to take part in the traditional ‘look back, looking forward’ review of the year.

Full details of what those responding replied are in the January issue of Newslink due to be delivered to MSA members in the next few days.

These are the questions and my responses.

1) Do you think the Standards Check has been a success – and depending on your answer, why?

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Transparency data on departmental spending

Today I received an email from the Department of Transport concerning Transparency data on departmental spending in October 2014 covering the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency, Highways Agency, Maritime and Coastguard Agency and others. I never quite worked out who the others were.

I’m sure I have been sent this information in previous months but I guess I have never felt moved to investigate further before. I downloaded the file.

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