GREETINGS
to all our CDMP Team!

Winter has been ‘settling in’ with all the associated winter driving conditions that go along with the cold temperatures.

Another huge thank you for regularly braving the weather to support our young people when sitting in front of the fire is a more comfortable option!

A brief newsletter to keep you up to date.

Safe travels CDMP ‘whanau’, Bruce Pauling (BP)

Covid-19:

Thanks to all for understanding the ‘drives are on’ then ‘drives are off’ scenarios recently. The steering team thought for the sake of missing a couple of drives, it was better to be cautious. We are all back to full steam so fingers crossed it stays that way.

VTNZ Update:

You will all hopefully know by now that we have a 2nd full-time driver testing officer (DTO) at VTNZ Masterton!

As an aside, the young man is the son of an ex Traffic Officer I worked with for many years…( road safety is in the blood!)

We have already seen the waiting times for restricted tests starting to decrease which is fantastic!

If we have failures it even seems we can rebook the student in for a 2nd test without much delay….in fact, one of my students failed one day and we booked in for the following morning at which stage she passed. Again, if there are unusual reasons for a failure, where the student or mentor are puzzled, please let me know so I can clarify this and give feedback to the CDMP team.

Undertaking (Overtaking on the left):

John Wells raised this point at our last luncheon. If a vehicle ahead has stopped and indicating a right turn, you may move to the left and pass on the left of the stationary vehicle before rejoining the lane proper.

The driver must do a quick check to the left external mirror and check over the left shoulder, to ensure no vehicle ( especially cyclists) are in any left ‘blindspot’.

Feedback from the DTOs’ suggest a quick left indication before moving left is required.

I suggest turning the indicator off immediately on passing if there is a side road/intersection nearby, to negate a vehicle pulling out as the driver may think you are turning left.

Thanks for raising this John.

Headchecks:

These are working really well in the main and are absolutely required.

I had a student who was literally twisting her body right around to almost look out the rear window. This can cause pulling on the steering wheel and also eyes off the road ahead for too long.

Prior to the turn, the procedure is indicate first ( to allow the 3 seconds duration), and a quick check to the external mirror and a sideways turn off the head to quickly glance towards the blindspot ( which takes 1 – 2 seconds ).

Again, if the vehicle is about to cross over into a hatched area prior to a right turn bay ( KFC corner), or onto a flush median before turning right into say VTNZ, there must be indication, checking of right external mirror and a glance over the right shoulder before moving over into these areas. (short ‘how to ‘videos are in previous newsletters and can be found here)

Mentors for Kuranui College:

We could use another couple of mentors to help with student numbers at Kuranui College. The current mentors are often taking two students per week which is so generous. Comes the time when folk want a holiday or something comes up, so it would be welcome to have another couple on board.

We have inserted mentor ads in the college newsletters, ‘local rags’,  Carterton, Greytown and Featherston libraries, sent information to South Wairarapa service clubs, and Paul Mason has put posters up in public spaces as well.

I will also post on the Neighbourly Facebook pages.

Please spread the word to see if we get interest for folk living in South Wairarapa. ( let me know if you want a laminated A4 poster to put up somewhere or to email the ad to other people).

Wet Roads

A couple of fails the other week from students who were deemed to be following too closely on the wet road on S.H.2.

One was informed she hadn’t been exactly 4 seconds behind a vehicle ahead. The student felt at that stage the road was damp and not covered in water.

It’s a subjective test really but if there is water on the road and it’s raining then take care with the 4 second following distance.

A hard decision to make for some if you are coming up to a slow moving vehicle on passing lanes. A decision must be made early into the start of the passing lanes before accelerating to make the passing manoeuvre, and have sufficient time to pass (without exceeding 100km/h) and get back into the left lane.

That is why it is essential to be searching ahead as far as possible to determine these decisions, as indecisions will lead to critical errors.

Now is also a great time to pass on to the students to be super aware of shaded areas ( especially on corners) which don’t get any sun during the day. These areas are often ‘iced up’ and if speeds aren’t reduced it can lead to loss of traction and control.

Road Works and Temporary Speed Limits

There is nil ‘wriggle room’ around these temporary sites. We must have slowed down to e.g. 30km/h at the temporary speed sign & not speed up till the increase in speed sign….e.g. back to 50km/h.

Obviously the lower speeds are there for the safety of road crew in the area, and also to lessen the effects of vehicles travelling over loose gravel & uneven surfaces.

At times these can be confusing & sometimes the signs are not ‘compliant’. For context, the other day we had a young man who was an excellent driver & should have ‘flown through’, however he encountered contractors who had erected 30km/h signage on South Belt.

He passed the very short worksite & ahead was a long straight with nil other work being carried out ahead. He slightly increased his speed to a meagre 40km/h & after rounding a bend at the end of the straight, he then came across the 50km/h signs.

The testing officer gave him an ‘immediate fail’, as he had exceeded a speed limit for more than 10 seconds & they returned to VTNZ.

Aaron, his mentor & support person on the test, was obviously so disappointed with this, and along with myself thought it very harsh indeed.

I immediately visited the site when I was made aware of the outcome & spoke with a Council compliance officer who was checking the site.

He agreed with me that the area was non-compliant as it didn’t have ‘repeater’ 30km signs every 400m.

I notified NZTA of this episode but not much could be done about this, although I requested they inform testing officers that they need to be aware of these anomalies, and if there is a confusion at worksites, then a bit of ‘leeway’ would be the appropriate actions & not an ‘immediate fail’.

The advice is to the student to strictly adhere to the lower speeds at all times, until they reach a higher speed threshold.

Courtesy Crossings:

We had a situation where a student had deemed to cross in front of a pedestrian on a ‘courtesy crossing’ on Bruce St Masterton where New World is, and was failed. The pedestrian had waved the student on & then crossed behind the car, but the testing officer deemed a ‘failed to give way’ scenario.
Aaron has taken the time to send me a detailed email about the circumstances with a detailed diagram….thank you for that Aaron.
I have sent this through to the Waka Kotahi senior driver testing compliance Manager with some ‘pointed comments’ & will advise you all of his reply.
I am very frustrated at this decision but cannot take it further with VTNZ, and have to go through these channels. My advice is that in all cases, if someone is about to cross, stop & give way ( even though it is the car that has the ‘right of way’). If a pedestrian ‘waves’ the driver through, the student should ask the DTO if they can proceed to drive through the courtesy crossing.

New Vehicle:

We were recently advised by Trusthouse Foundation of my successful grant application to purchase a new Mitsubishi Mirage, to replace one of our older Honda Jazz(es).

I will coordinate the signwriting and auxiliary brake installation before we start using this around the start of August.

It is the same make, model & colour as Makouras’ new car, which is a 2021 1200cc GLS 5 star rated car.

A CDMP ‘first’:

Innes Kennard had been working with a young lady who is physically challenged for quite some time now. Nikita had a stroke as a young girl after a head injury sustained falling off monkey bars at school, and her entire left side is affected.

She was dependent on help to get her around to appointments, and the support was very limited.

She drives one-handed and the challenge was to ensure she had full control when indicating out of roundabouts and all other turning scenarios.

Innes was in the car as a support person for the test. She ‘nailed it’ on her 1st attempt. I was there after the test and I can say there were a few tears from all present.

The CDMP steering team are working on a grant for Nikita to be supplied with a modified car which would change her life…fingers crossed.

Champion Innes!!!

Competition for 2 x $50 ‘prezzie cards:

You guys are too smart for your own good so this editions’ questions require a bit of research.

  1. Name the Governments Road Safety Strategy

  2. What is the ‘target’ of this strategy

  3. What are the initial actions under Focus area 4 of the strategy

Good luck!

Please text/email me with your answer…..all correct entries go into the draw & I’ll contact the two winners ( and announce them at the next luncheon).

Luncheon:

We’ll announce the next luncheon date soon but it will be sometime late August/early September.

In the meantime…..thanks again for all the good you are all doing for our young people.

Take care, Bruce

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