In this article about the joys and frustrations of a driving instructor, I could relate to a lot of the points raised; eating on the road (stopped of course!), teaching non-native speaking pupils etc. I then got to the part where the pupil took the corner “too fast”:
“Julie, who works for The Professional Driving School, explains: ‘I’ve got a pupil who took a corner too fast.
‘I grabbed the steering wheel. She fought me for the steering wheel.
‘When people are frightened, their hands clamp on to the steering wheel.
‘As I leaned across, my seat belt locked, so in pulling the steering wheel round, we hit the curb.s”
To my mind, the situation shouldn’t have ever got that far. If the corner was indeed taken at a dangerous speed, surely the ‘speed on approach’ was simply too fast? Was there a Q&A on approach to the corner – “Are you clear which corner we are turning into?”, “Do you think this speed is appropriate for a left/right turn?”.
Dependant on the answers/reaction, to my mind the pupil should have been ‘instructed’ to “slow down” and/or “more brake” and if that didn’t bring the situation under control, intervene with the dual controls. A discussion on the side of the road would then have followed as there may have been a lack of understanding in the ‘speed’ required in the MSMPSL procedure.
Okay, having got into that situation, a parental firm raised voice of “hands off!” and/or “feet off!” would likely have stopped the fighting for steering.
It is the instructors responsibility to ensure that the pupil, car, other road users and themselves are safe at all times. The corner should never have been taken too fast. What do you think?