To always be aware of what is going on around you, whilst also planning for what you need to do in response.
To know and understand the importance of anticipation and planning to enable you to plan ahead and respond safely to others actions.
To know the importance of anticipation and planning whilst driving
To recognise situations where planning and anticipation may be more difficult
To anticipate possible situations involving other road users
To be aware of the possible risks involved with other road users and plan for them
Anticipation in driving means planning well ahead and being prepared to take necessary action. To anticipate and plan for others actions you should be constantly checking what is happening all around you. It may be helpful to consider the following:
What are other road users likely to do next?
Should I speed up or slow down?
Do I need to stop?
Planning ahead and anticipating the actions others may take, can allow you too:
Avoid the need for you to make a sudden reaction
Maintain a safe stopping distance between you and other vehicles
Prevent some hazards from happening
Take early action if a hazard does occur
When driving always leave enough space and time to plan and react to what is ahead.
Approaching a hazard:
Always follow the Mirror, Signal, Manoeuvre routine. This is the process of taking and giving information. The mirrors will let you know what is happening behind you. This along with your general looking should give you a very good idea of what is happening all around you. The signals are you telling others around you what you want to do.
The manoeuvre breaks down into Position, Speed, Look. This routine will put you in the right place at the right time so you can have a proper look to know if it’s safe.
These are the routines that you should use when you are approaching any hazard.
In some situations it may be more difficult to plan and anticipate what will happen. These more difficult conditions include:
In bad weather, particularly heavy rain and snow
In heavy traffic
If the road is poorly lit and during dawn and dusk
If the route is unfamiliar to you
On a dual carriageway or motorway
In built up areas where traffic conditions change rapidly
On roads with parked cars along them
Near schools or entrances to businesses
Anticipate actions of other road users:
Other road users may display differing actions to what you would expect. To anticipate the possible actions of others you need to be aware of the risks associated with them.
Always plan for the possibility of a cyclist passing you on the left hand side as well as the right.
Take extra care when you need to cross over a cycle lane in case cyclists do not stop or signal
Always look out for motorcycles, especially at junctions or if they are moving through slow moving traffic
Allow motorcyclists additional room if there are strong winds on the road, due to the risk of them being blown into your path.
Always drive slowly in areas where pedestrians are likely to be on or near the road
Be aware of the possibility of pedestrians suddenly stepping out into the road
Take extra care when near schools
Animals (such as horses).
Always give horses as much room as possible on the road and slow down before passing them
If you are driving in an area known to have wild deer, look out for deer warning signs and keep your speed down
Do not panic
Check in which direction they are coming from and if necessary pull to the side of the road/safely stop
Make sure you don’t block the road
Buses and Coaches.
Be aware of people getting off the bus and stepping out into the road
Also plan for buses and coaches pulling away from the bus stop
Take care with an overseas bus or coach that people don’t step directly into the road
Visual warnings and clues of possible hazards:
Sometimes there may be clues of possible hazards on the road ahead. These may be obvious and include road signs, overhead warning signs on motorways and upcoming junctions. Other possible clues are:
Traffic ahead breaking
Traffic slowing on a normally busy road
Flashing lights ahead – blue for the emergency services and orange for roadworks or breakdown services
Other vehicles suddenly changing lanes
Poor weather conditions
Anticipation and planning are vital parts of driving safely. If you can plan and anticipate the possible actions of other road users, then you will be ready to react if a situation does occur.
Remember to constantly check what is happening directly in front of your car, on the road ahead and in your mirrors.
Remember that some weather or driving conditions can make anticipation and planning more difficult, in these conditions you may need to slow your car down to allow you time to plan and react if necessary.
Always consider other road users and what they may do next.
You should be able to:
Know what to look for and where to look
Be able to deal with it safely using MSM and PSL
Driving The Essential Skills: Section(s) 7, 8 and 10
Controls and Instruments
Moving away and stopping
Mirrors-vision and use
Anticipation and planning
Use of speed
Turning the vehicle around
Passengers and load