Driver training specialist IAM Drive & Survive is offering weekly motoring tips to drivers from its head of training, Simon Elstow.

Driving around bends

This week he explains an advanced driving technique, IPSGA, which covers driving as smoothly as possible through bends:

  • Information. What’s going on around you? Check your mirrors to work out the movements of other road users and signal before changing course. If there is a lot of traffic or someone is following close behind, do this as early as possible.
  • Position. After confirming it’s safe, take the best position for dealing with the bend. On a left-hand bend move closer to the centre line and on a right-hand bend closer to the kerb or verge, but stick to your lane. This will improve your view around the corner.
  • Speed. Adjust your speed to prepare for the corner.
  • Gears. Once you’re at the right speed, select the right gear. Adjust your speed early so that you have time to separate changing speed from changing gear.
  • Accelerate. Once you can see through the bend, accelerate smoothly if it is safe, bearing in mind the road conditions. Gently accelerating through a corner balances the car.

Elstow said: “Preparation is key with most things in life, and cornering safely is no exception. Changing gear or reducing speed once in the bend unbalances the car, which is at best nerve-wracking, and at worst dangerous. You’ll also make better progress through bends if you use this sequence, and can enjoy the feeling of accelerating smoothly away afterwards.”

To help drivers stay safe and enjoy their driving this summer, the IAM has a new website, drivingadvice.org.uk, with traffic updates, weather forecasts, and driving tips, including: driving abroad, cycling, coping with Olympic congestion, and loading the car for a long journey.