Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Keeping Safe As A New Driver

You might not know this, but last month I passed my driving test. I absolutely hated learning to drive, but since being out on the road by myself I've got to say I'm a fan of my newfound freedom. I've only stuck to routes I would have travelled on when learning - so this means no motorways just yet - but I've got to say I'm doing pretty well so far. When I rang my dad to let him know that I passed, instead of immediately offering up his congratulations to me, his first comment was that now I needed to know what to do in an emergency. And he's right!

Not long after Joe and I moved to Somerset, we were on the motorway heading along to Bristol. Out of nowhere, we heard a magnificent bang and the car was visibly lower on one side. Joe safely pulled us over onto the hard shoulder and got out to find that one of the tyres had completely burst open. We hadn't owned the car for very long, and had neglected to really check the tyres frequently enough. It turned out that while the front tyres looked brand new, the back tyres were completely threadbare. Not only is this pretty illegal - you could face up to 12 points on your license and a possible ban! - but dangerous too! If Joe had lost the control of the car, we would have been in a very scary situation. 
As neither of us had really anticipated this sort of thing, we didn't know what to do. Did our insurance include roadside assistance? Did we need to let the traffic maintenance people know? Did we phone a tyre service near to where we lived or near to where we situated along the M5? It really made us realise that we needed a plan of action if anything like this - or potentially worse - happened again. We've since created a nifty little folder that lives in the glovebox. It has all our insurance information, including if we have roadside assistance, our emergency contacts and even when we last changed our tyres - if yours might need replacing soon, check out DAT Tyres online to buy new ones. 
Of course, while it's a good idea to know what to do if you crash, you need to be able to relax enough and enjoy the drive. Although I was technically able to drive on the motorway as soon as I was insured on our car, I want to make sure I am properly used to our car - it's a lot older than my instructors shiny new one! - before I try anything new. I'm even considering taking up the Pass Plus scheme that instructors offer, which includes driving on the motorway and in bad weather conditions. But we'll see! For now, I'm enjoying being able to grab some sneaky chicken nuggets whenever I fancy it! 
*Disclaimer: This post was a collaboration with DAT Tyres. Content written by myself.

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