Before you Drive

Cockpit Drill / Systems Check

Your tutor will ask you to learn this drill and use it at the beginning of every training session. There is a reason for everything you do in driver training.

By carrying out this procedure you are making sure:-

  • The vehicle is safe.
  • All of the systems are working properly.
  • Focusing your mind on the fact that you are about to drive a vehicle, which has the capability of being a lethal weapon.
  • So stick with it and it will soon become second nature. As you check each control say:
  • The handbrake is on, the gear lever is in neutral.
  • There is good pressure on the footbrake.
  • The seat, mirrors and steering wheel are adjusted to my satisfaction.
  • Please check that your seatbelts are fastened, work correctly and are not damaged or frayed and that your doors are closed properly but not locked.
  • I am aware of the layout and function of the controls.
  • Switching on the ignition, the warning lights are illuminated and the gauges are working correctly.
  • I am depressing the clutch and starting the engine. Those warning lights that should be extinguished are no longer lit.
  • I have enough fuel for my journey.
  • Checking around the vehicle, selecting 1st gear, releasing the handbrake and moving off. On moving off, conduct a running brake test between 35 and 50 kph to check for straight-line operation.
  • Automatics keep footbrake depressed while engaging DRIVE.


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