Whether you were planning on learning to drive, had had a number of lessons, or were preparing for your test, the COVID-19 pandemic forced a lot of our learner drivers to change their plans. However, more and more lockdown restrictions are being lifted, which could see pupils finally getting back behind the wheel in the coming months. What can you expect from lessons in a totally changed world though?
Before Your Driving Lesson
On the day of your driving lesson, your instructor will get in touch to ask you if you, or anyone in your household, has had symptoms of COVID-19 within the last seven days. They will also ask you if you have been in contact with a symptomatic individual within the last 14 days. If the answer to either of those is a yes, then your lesson will be cancelled.
When this blog post was published in June 2020, the contact tracing programme had just been launched to trace the contacts of infected individuals. The contacts were then told to isolate for 14 days to prevent the virus from spreading further. If a contact tracer called, then you had to stay at home and self-isolate for 14 days, which meant a lot of driving lessons were cancelled during this time.
Fast forward to January 2022 and if you are in contact with a positive COVID-19 case, then you no longer need to self-isolate but you must test daily using rapid lateral flow tests (LFT’s). If you have a positive LFT, then you must self-isolate immediately. It is courteous to keep your driving instructor aware of any issues and give you more time to postpone a lesson.
Before You Get in The Car
If your driving lesson is able to proceed, then there are a few things you can do to prepare. Wash your hands for 20 seconds immediately before your lesson, and if you wish to, put on some disposable gloves just before you get into your car.
Your driving instructor will have a short conversation with you before your lesson begins. This will take place outside the vehicle. This is a chance for them to see that you aren’t displaying any symptoms and remind you to wash your hands if you haven’t done so. If you are a new pupil, you will be asked to hold up your provisional licence so they can check it electronically.
Keeping Our Vehicles Clean
We always keep our fleet of learner driver cars in pristine condition, and we have stepped up our hygiene measures to meet current public health guidelines. Your instructor will clean the following before your lesson:
- Internal and external door handles
- Steering wheel
- Car keys
- Windows and mirror controls
- Seat and head restraints
- Seatbelts and buckles
- Gear lever
- Indicator and wiper controls
- Learning materials
During Your Lesson
Here at Nayland Driving School, we aim to deliver lessons that keep you safe without sacrificing on the learning experience. Your instructor will keep the windows of the car open to provide adequate ventilation – and air con will be used in the event of bad weather. Dress for the weather – you don’t want to be hot and uncomfortable during your lesson. When you get home, it’s a good idea to get changed and then take a shower right away.
During your lesson, your instructor will make sure that neither of you face each other directly when talking. Facing forward is the safest option in an enclosed space like a car. They will hold up any learning materials rather than passing them back and forth. If they need to perform a demonstration, they will wipe down the controls afterwards. They will give notes by text message or email so that you don’t have to share a pen. If you can, make your payment electronically rather than using cash.
PPE is a concern for many of our students. Wearing disposable gloves is something we encourage. You will need to wear a face mask during your driving lesson unless agreed otherwise with your driving instructor. We will always work in full accordance with DVSA, government and insurance company advice, and will update our PPE policy if needed.
Get in Touch
While all of these measures may seem strict, they are there for a reason. It’s important to adhere to all of the new rules and regulations to protect your health, along with the health of your driving instructor and the other pupils that they teach. Our safety measures are subject to change in accordance to Government guidelines. If you want to find out more, then please do get in touch.