IAM RoadSmart Advanced Driver coaching gets back on the road again in England from today, Monday 20 July, after a four-month suspension due to coronavirus restrictions on travel and social distancing.
The UK’s largest independent road safety charity has also announced that drivers in Wales who want to resume or start their journey to becoming an Advanced Driver will be able to do so from Monday 10 August. This is in line with the decision of the devolved administration to restart learner driving lessons from 27 July.
Detailed guidelines have been issued to ensure the current social distancing rules are followed at all times and Advanced Driver coaching is carried out with personal safety in mind. The use of face coverings, gloves and hand sanitiser is required at all times.
Although Advanced Driver coaching may be restricted in parts of England and Wales by the availability of volunteer Observers, every effort will be made to ensure those who want to resume in-car coaching are able to do so. Associates who have already started their coaching will be given priority initially. Capacity is expected to steadily increase over coming weeks.
Social distancing and travel restrictions in Scotland and Northern Ireland mean IAM RoadSmart volunteers must wait a little longer to return to the road to provide coaching again.
IAM RoadSmart’s advanced driving groups in England have been starting to prepare for a return to one-to-one on-road coaching since it was announced by the Government that learner driver test would start again from Wednesday 22 July.
The move marks a further milestone in the return to the delivery of advanced driver and rider coaching which can help reduce vehicle, fuel and insurance costs, improve road safety, boost confidence and reduce travel stress.
Richard Gladman, IAM RoadSmart’s Head of Driver and Rider Standards said: “We are delighted to be able to get those taking the Advanced Driver course back on the road in England and shortly in Wales too.
“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.”
For those who would like a refresher as they return to the road after an extended period off the road, driver and rider assessments are also available for members and non-members. Visit our courses page for more information.