Give ‘L’s room

Give learner drivers the space they need on the roads.

Dear editor,

As a driving school instructor I have noticed in the last while the increase in other drivers not giving student drivers the space they need when learning to drive.  The “L” magnet first came into place to help differentiate a new driver from that of a seasoned one. It was supposed to encourage people to increase their following distance due to the unpredictable nature of a learner.

What I have observed more and more are people following far too closely. This increases the anxiety for an “L” when people are tailgating. Also, new drivers can be unpredictable and you should keep extra distance in case they stop suddenly or make an erratic maneuver.

Another thing I have noticed is the need for people to “teach the student driver a lesson”. If my student does not speed up quickly enough for your liking when merging into traffic or making a lane change, do not increase your speed to the point where all we see is your grill in our rear view mirror. Rest assured I am in the car asking my student to accelerate and get up to the speed of traffic. If I don’t think my student can merge safely I will tell them not to do so before they merge into traffic. I have been driving long enough to know that your speed has not remained constant and the you are somehow trying to prove a point with your behavior.

I guess what I am saying is this: we don’t have rush hour traffic or many of the other factors city drivers have. There really isn’t the need to be in a hurry. Try to remember what it was like when you learned how to drive and cut the next student driver you see just a bit of slack when they do something you don’t think they should be doing. We were all learners at some stage in our driving life.

Sincerely,

Gaby Wickstrom

Oceanview Driving School Ltd.