5. Effective Use Of Mirrors
If you’ve done your cockpit drill properly, you are well set for using your mirrors effectively.
The safest drivers know what is going on around them at all times. To achieve this they REGULARY check their mirrors as they drive. In addition to these ‘regular’ checks, they have trained themselves to check their mirrors at certain key times. What are those key times?
- When they see a hazard.
Okay, what’s a hazard? Simply put, a hazard is anything that COULD cause you to change speed or direction. This is a vital time to check your mirror(s) as you need to know how much time and space you have around your car before you change speed or direction.
- As they change gear.
When you are changing gear, you are generally changing speed so a great habit to get into is checking your main mirror as you reach for the gearstick.
- Before moving off in stop-start-traffic.
Before you move forward, best practice is to perform a ‘rainbow check’. A rainbow check is simply the act of checking your left mirror, main mirror, and then right mirror. This is particularly important when there may be bikes or motorcycles weaving in and out of traffic.
If you train yourself to check your mirrors at these key times, you stand a great chance of keeping up-to-date with what’s going on around your car at all times.