Learning to drive is like attempting to win an endurance race. It involves planning, skill development and practice. While you may want to get to the end of the race track pretty quickly and achieve independence, it’s easy to overexert yourself. Just like in the fable of the hare and the tortoise, in learning to drive, being slow and steady wins the race. Learner drivers should start their driving experience on quiet roads, parking lots and even industrial areas for three main reasons: overcoming nerves, safety and logic.
Learning to drive can be nerve-wracking. It’s crucial that learner drivers have the opportunity to overcome their nerves on unpopulated quiet streets before adding pressure. Not only do learner need to know the function of the myriad gadgets of a car, they need to be able to multi-task:
- Listen to their supervisor’s instructions
- Observe where they’re travelling
- Watch the road for hazards
- Learning and applying road rules.
- Add a bunch of cars surrounding them: some overtaking, some honking, some not driving in a complete straight line.
It’ll probably result in a mental breakdown.
Especially if you’re still learning how to change lanes while checking blind spots and looking in the rear-view mirror.
Learning to drive is a complex endeavour that can only be learnt gradually. For the safety of the learner driver as well as the people on the road around them, it’s critical that the journey starts small within isolated areas such as parking lots or undeveloped roads.
Especially if you make a mistake (we’re all human after all).
Imagine someone who’s never driven a car before and has just learned how to use its various parts. Then place them on a busy main street…
A recipe for disaster.
Crashing is inevitable on a busy road if you’re still getting used to the position of the brake vs accelerator.
Learner drivers are still beginners, and just like exercise requires warm-ups to prevent injury and self-harm, so too does driving. In this case, it’s warming up on quiet streets by stretching out ‘muscles’ and developing skills.
You can’t go from a person who barely walks to a professional runner in thirty seconds. Likewise you can’t get into the car for the first time and expect to go 90km/hr on a highway.
It just isn’t logical.
It’ll only result in excruciating pain as you don’t yet have the muscles, skills and endurance to manage travelling at high speeds.
With these three factors in mind, it becomes clear why learning to drive on quiet roads is absolutely necessary.