Congratulations on passing your driving test. All your hard work has paid off and now you get to enjoy your independence. You might be eager to get behind the wheel and see where the road takes you, however, as a new driver it’s easy to suddenly feel overwhelmed. After all, this will be the first time you’re driving unsupervised and you’re fully responsible for every decision you make behind the wheel of your car.
If you want to remain calm and collected behind the wheel, there are some things that all new drivers should remember. Discover them below.
Organise your car insurance
There are many different types of car insurance. So, you must find the right cover for you and your circumstances. By law, all vehicles in Australia must have Compulsory Third Party Insurance. It’s a legal requirement and to drive without it has serious legal repercussions.
Most drivers take out additional policies to complement their obligatory CTP cover. These include third party property, fire and theft, comprehensive and third party only cover. Finding the right policy for you is easy online, so make sure you compare as many providers and policies as possible.
Whether your passengers are encouraging you to drive faster and recklessly or the driver behind you is showing their impatience. Allowing yourself to feel pressured by other people can lead you to make mistakes and impact your driving performance. Always keep calm behind the wheel and avoid giving in to pressure. If you need to pull over for a moment to gather your composure do so.
Always wear your seatbelt
You’re not being supervised and you’re clearly a competent driver, so why wear a seatbelt? The truth is if you don’t you’re more likely to be seriously injured in a crash. Even if you’re not at fault. Seatbelts prevent passengers from being ejected from the vehicle, reduce the likelihood of serious injuries and keep you in place for airbag deployment.
Just because you’re no longer being advised by your instructor doesn’t mean you should let bad driving habits creep in. Always indicate and signal as you have been taught. If other drivers don’t know what you’re doing, then you’re more likely to end up in a collision and claim on your insurance.
Don’t drive distracted
Loud music, friends in the back and eating behind the wheel. You’ve just passed your test so naturally you want to enjoy your driving experience. Sadly, distracted driving is one of the main causes of road accidents in Australia. So, if you want to avoid claiming on your insurance and getting into a serious collision, always give your full attention to the road ahead.
And finally… slow down
Why are you in such a rush? If you set off in good time and plan your route, you should never feel the pressure to break the speed limit. Driving fast is exhilarating, especially on territory highways where speed limits can be as much as 130kmph but be sensible and stick within the speed limits to reduce the likelihood of an accident and an insurance claim.