IAM RoadSmart has restarted its Advanced Driver coaching in England from today (Monday 20 July), backed by detailed guidelines on social distancing rules.
The training, which was suspended mid-March due to coronavirus restrictions on travel and social distancing, will resume after it was announced by the Government that learner driver test would start again from Wednesday 22 July.
Training, which can help reduce vehicle, fuel and insurance costs, improve road safety, boost confidence and reduce travel stress, will also restart in Wales from Monday 10 August, in line with the decision of the devolved administration to restart learner driving lessons from 27 July. However, social distancing and travel restrictions in Scotland and Northern Ireland mean Advanced Driver training remains suspended there until further notice.
The Advanced Driver coaching is carried out with personal safety in mind; as well as ensuring current social distancing rules are followed at all times, it also requires the use of face coverings, gloves and hand sanitiser.
Availability of training may initially be restricted in parts of England and Wales by the availability of volunteer Observers, but work is underway to ramp this up. Associates who have already started their coaching will be given priority initially.
Richard Gladman, IAM RoadSmart’s head of driver and rider standards, said: “Our community of passionate and skilled drivers have made personal safety their number one priority by following the rules on social distancing and non-essential travel. They have been great ambassadors for IAM RoadSmart and road safety.
“Our volunteer Observers and Examiners in England have been brushing up their skills over the last couple of weeks to make sure that when our Associates resume their coaching, they are doing so to the same high standards we always maintain. This process of peer review can start in Wales from 27 July in preparation for a return to Advanced Driver coaching two weeks later.
“We recognise that some people will be hesitant about returning to in-car coaching and we have made it clear that activity should only resume when our volunteer observers and examiners and our associates – feel it is safe to do so according to their individual circumstances.
“We continue to monitor announcements from government and the devolved administrations carefully and update our guidelines accordingly.”