The Art of Defensive Driving: How Experienced Drivers Can Transition into Expert Drivers

Driving is not just about getting from point A to point B; it’s about doing it safely. Even experienced drivers have room to grow, to shift from being just good drivers to true road experts. In Australia, road statistics are startling — for instance, despite improvements in vehicle safety, there were 1,123 road deaths in the 12 months to February 2023 Australian Government: Road Deaths Australia.

“Every time you’re behind the wheel, you’re holding a story not yet written. Expert driving isn’t just about the handling of the car, but the anticipation of the road’s narrative. Drive not only with your hands and feet but with foresight and understanding,” says car enthusiast and small business loan provider Shane Perry of Max Funding—one of Australia’s leading small business funding facilitators.

So, how can you, as an experienced driver, become an expert? It starts with defensive driving.

1. Understanding Defensive Driving

Defensive driving is all about being ready for the unexpected. It means you’re always alert, watching out for other drivers and potential hazards. Think of it as playing a smart game of chess on the road; you need to think several moves ahead.

2. Anticipating Others’ Moves

As an expert driver, you’ll learn to predict what other drivers might do. This could mean expecting that a car may run a red light or that a pedestrian might cross unexpectedly. It’s all about looking ahead and reading the situation. Be sure to take the Vehicle On Road Test. The VORT will assess how safely and competently you can drive

3. Situational Awareness Mastery

This is your sixth sense on the road. You know how to scan the environment, not just the car in front but also the two vehicles ahead. You’re aware of side streets where cars could pull out and you’re constantly checking mirrors to know what’s happening all around you.

4. Psychology of Road Behaviour

Understanding why drivers do what they do can give you an edge. Are they likely to be in a hurry at 8 AM on a weekday? Probably. Knowing this, you can prepare for more aggressive driving during rush hours.

5. Staying Up to Date

Roads change, rules update, and cars get new features. Staying informed means you can make the most of these changes to stay safe on the road.

6. Advanced Maneuvering Skills

This isn’t about fancy driving skills and tricks. It’s about perfecting the basics, like smooth braking and controlled acceleration, to a level where your car is an extension of your own senses.

7. Embracing Technology

Many cars now come with safety features that can help you drive defensively. Learn how to use these tools—they can be a real asset.

8. Dealing with Distractions

Expert drivers know how to manage distractions. This means setting up your environment so it’s easier to focus. Put that phone away, set up your GPS before you head out, and keep the volume at a level where you can still hear emergency vehicles.

9. Weather Wisdom

An expert driver knows how different weather conditions affect driving. You understand that wet roads mean longer stopping distances and that high winds can push your car around.

10. Continuous Learning

You never stop learning. You take advanced driving courses, you read up on the latest safety research, and you’re always improving your skills.

Elevate Your Driving Skills with Adelaide West Driver Training

By focusing on these areas, experienced drivers can elevate their skills and become expert drivers. It’s a commitment to ongoing learning, anticipating the actions of others, and staying alert and aware. It’s about understanding the psychology of other drivers and using this knowledge to your advantage.

Ready to shift gears from being a skilled driver to an expert on the road? Adelaide West Driver Training in South Australia is your team of highly qualified driving instructors dedicated to helping you navigate the journey to a full licence. With a focus on honing your ability to be alert, attentive, and forward-thinking, we’re here to guide you every step of the way.

Contact us at now for top-notch, quality-based professional driving training, and let’s steer your driving skills towards excellence. Don’t just drive—excel at it.

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