“Get a Grip! Don’t Loose Your Cool”

    Snow and ice hold many dangers for drivers. The most obvious is the lack of grip between the tyres and the road surface. 

    It’s very easy to be lulled into a false sense of security when sitting in a nice warm car, but it’s winter and it’s freezing out there and so there are likely to be icy patches! The grip of the tyres can be broken by any sudden movement, this is why driving on very slippery surfaces requires careful and delicate use of the car’s steering, brakes, accelerator and clutch.

    The best advice for drivers in winter is ‘stay at home’! Especially in icy weather – ice, unlike snow, is not always easy to see. The first sign may be an eerie silence. This will be coupled with light steering. If this happens, allow plenty of time to stop (up to ten times your normal stopping distance).

    To reduce the risk of wheelspin and consequent sideways skids, use the highest gear that it is practically possible.

    Move off in second gear, change to fourth or fifth gear early. It’s OK if your car grumbles a little bit – in fact, the nearer to stalling it is, the more grip you have.

    When you first drive in snow, try and find an empty car park, or similar location, and ‘play’ for a while by driving in circles, etc. This will give you a feel for your car’s ability to grip the road and improve your control skills.

    Moving off in snow and ice is best done using the highest gear possible – this will usually be second gear. If you encounter wheel-spin, ease off the gas, otherwise you will simply ‘polish’ the snow and ice, making it more slippery. ‘Rock’ the car back and forth to get it moving (by using the clutch, up to move forward and down to roll back). Once you are moving, keep your speed down and use the highest practical gear. Gentle use of all controls is essential. Always leave plenty of space between yourself and the car ahead, otherwise you may end up being stuck (literally) behind less skillful drivers.

    If you get stuck stay in your vehicle but be careful about keeping the engine running – there is a real danger of fumes filling the car and so you must ensure that there is a good clear area for the exhaust fumes to dissipate (you might have to clear snow to do this). Only run your engine for about 20 minutes in each hour.

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    Your weekly driving tip!

    How to Steering Clear of Trouble


    Look at what you want to hit

    Your first response to the statement above might be “I don’t want to hit anything!” But.
    You will be drawn towards whatever you put your main focus of attention on (what you look at). So it follows that if you look at the obstacles, you will probably hit them! Almost all steering problems are related to observation.
    By looking well ahead and keeping your eyes moving you will be gathering as much information as possible, this is essential for effective steering control.
    When steering through narrow gaps, for example, between parked cars, keep looking well ahead and aim for the clear space. If you look ahead early you will always be on the correct course, you don’t need to look at the obstructions.
    This is a bit like throwing a dart or shooting an arrow from a bow. The aim is taken early and then the arrow follows the correct course.

    Turning right

    Many new drivers have problems when turning right or completing the final leg of the turn-in-the-road (three point turn) manoeuvre. This is because they are looking in the wrong place!
    The natural tendency is to look at the end of the bonnet or directly in front of the car, but you should be looking through your driver’s door window. Fix your view well along the new road and then as your head or your eyes start to move back towards the front (this will happen as the car moves around the corner) move the steering wheel with them.
    On the diagram above, the driver starts his final observation checks into the road to the right at point ‘A’, assuming that it is safe to turn; he takes one last check ahead then starts the turn while looking into the new road through the driver’s door window, towards point ‘C’.
    At point ‘B’ the driver’s head will be moving back to the front as the view of point ‘C’ is moving from the driver’s door window to the windscreen.
    As the driver’s head moves, the wheel should also move (gently) to straighten up the car. This is because, although the car is still angled across the road at point ‘B’, the front wheels are pointing towards point ‘C’.
    Drivers who do not ‘Look at what they want to hit’ (point ‘C’) will usually straighten up late or need to rush the steering, turning the wheel faster than is really necessary.

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    Lets examine Hill Starts

    made easy:

    This advice will help to ensure that you are always confident about hill-starts! By using this simple trick you will always move away safely.

    The trick is to use the handbrake as a ‘safety lever’ to prevent the car from rolling back while you adjust your feet during an uphill start.

    When new drivers have a problem with starting on hills, it is usually because they are worried about rolling back. If the car rolls back, even a little bit, they ‘panic’ and start tap-dancing with the pedals! But the truth is, if you can move off OK on a level road you already have all the skill you need to move off on a hill.

    Using this method, you will only adjust your feet on the pedals when the car is safely secured with the handbrake is firmly pulled on.


    Start by preparing the car. Select first gear and press the gas pedal (accelerator) so the engine makes a bit more noise than it does for a flat road start. Next bring the clutch up to the biting point (the point where the engine start to connect with the wheels). Now keep both of your feet still!

    Make your normal safety checks (look all around and use your mirrors) and then release the handbrake very gently – no more than a few millimetres. If the starts to move (back or forward) keep your feet still and pull the handbrake back on again.

    Re-adjust your feet while the car is secure, double check that the road is still clear, and then try again. Repeat this until you have full control.

    By using this method you will feel secure in the knowledge that you can’t roll back more than a couple of centimetres at the very most; with practise you will find that you soon get the right ‘feel’ for the clutch every time and that you won’t need to pull handbrake back at all – its simply a matter of confidence.


    Helping your day to day driving progress!

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    Elite Driving School

    Harriet Cox has been voted Elite Driving Schools most improved pupil of the month for August.

    Harriet was put forward by her driving instructor James Fosten who said:

    I would like to put Harriet Cox forward for the most improved student of the month. After coming over from her other driving instructor, Harriet had very little confidence and understanding of roundabouts. Now with her test coming up i can proudly say her ability and forward vision of the road ahead has massively improved. Looking very comfortable dealing with the daily hazards of the road. Roundabouts are now a thing of the past. It would be nice to see more people on the roads drive with half the potential Harriet has.

    Harriet won some Free driving lessons from her driving instructor James.

    Well Done Harriet


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    Driving Test Pass

    Sally has just passed her driving test and shows off her sporty little “Green mean machine” that she will be pulling up outside the school in to surprise the kid’s

    Sally said about driving instructor Dennis Craven:

    I really can’t thank u enough all the hard work u put in on my lessons, & ur patience when I bet u cud av strangled me your the best instructor ever n I will recommend u always n this is the lil banger u will see me driving around in hehe ….
    Thanku again Dennis ur top class x

    01482 772327

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    Elite Driving School

    James Fosten receives Elite’s prestigious award for becoming our most recommended instructor for the month of July 2012 and for his hard work & dedication to his pupils…

    Well done James

    To book lessons with James call 01482 772327




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    Driving Lessons in Hull

    A Very Happy Olia…
    I am very happy with my experience with both Elite Driving School and Steve, who he has been absolutely brilliant and I couldn’t thank him enough!
    I will not hesitate to recommend your services to my firends and colleagues.
    All the best wishes to you too!
    Kind regards,

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