Driving instructors get on their bikes

Video and training course about cyclists' road positioning to help driving instructors educate next generation of drivers.
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A video about cyclists' road positioning, and a training course on the same subject, are reaching out to driving instructors in an attempt to educate the next generation of drivers. Cycle Training UK of London has started to offer a Cyclist Awareness Course for Driving Instructors. Lambeth Council commissioned the course to help driving instructors understand what new drivers need to know about sharing the road with cyclists, and it is to be rolled out to other areas. Driving instructors and cycle trainers compare teaching techniques and methodology, and driving instructors get a practical experience of riding bicycles on road and discuss key points that drivers need to know to ensure low risk interactions on the road.

David Dansky of Cycle Training UK said:

"The driving instructors had not really appreciated the amount of space cyclists needed to avoid hazards such as car doors opening or cyclist positioning to ensure they are in sight of drivers wishing to join a main road from a side road. At the end of the session there was an understanding why cyclists need to ride centrally in the lane sometimes."

There could be similar light-bulb moments for driving instructors around the UK who watch a new video that will be broadcast on driving-instructor.tv, an online resource of 300+ information-dense videos for those wishing to become driving instructors. Fronted by driving instructor Blaine Walsh (he taught tennis star Andy Murray how to drive), the learning channel for those wishing to become driving instructors, the video could influence up to 300,000 learner drivers. The video was produced for the Bicycle Association.

The video also stars Michael Frearson, director of the Association of Bikeability Schemes – Bikeability is “cycling proficiency for the 21st century”, a teaching scheme based on the National Standard for cycle training.

Frearson said: "Good cycling and good driving both start with good instruction. This video is the start of a dialogue between driving and cycling instructors about how to train novice cyclists and drivers to share the road both are entitled to use better. Hopefully experienced drivers and cyclists will learn from it too.

"Most cyclists today won’t get very far unless they ride on the road, and once there they will encounter other road users in motorized vehicles. With more and more people wanting to cycle, most other road users won’t get very far either without encountering someone on a bike. Knowing what to do when they meet would go a long way towards reducing the risk of collision and injury for both."

He added: "Given the inevitability of these encounters, is it remarkable that cyclists and drivers are not better prepared for sharing the roads both are entitled to use."

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