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Moving off at an angle, how to get going whilst keeping yourself and others safe

Performing an angled start manoeuvre in the UK driving test involves moving off from behind a parked vehicle. It’s crucial to execute this manoeuvre safely and smoothly, using the POM (Prepare, Observe, Move) routine. Here’s a step-by-step guide from your local BookInstructor ADI:

1. Prepare

  • Position Your Vehicle: Start by positioning your car just behind a parked vehicle, leaving adequate space between the two vehicles. Ensure you’re not too close to the rear of the parked vehicle. Your examiner will guide you whilst en-route and ask you to park closely to the car they request you perform this manoeuvre on.
  • Clutch Control: In a manual car, press the clutch and select first gear. Find the biting point where the engine starts to engage, indicated by a slight change in the engine sound and a gentle dip in the front of the car. This tight clutch control is crucial for moving off carefully.
  • Handbrake: If on a slope or in traffic, use the handbrake to prevent rolling.

2. Observe

  • All-Around Observations: Perform thorough checks for traffic and pedestrians:
    • Check your rear-view and side mirrors.
    • Perform shoulder checks (blind spot checks) to cover areas not visible in the mirrors.
  • Consider Road Width: Be mindful of the width of the road. If it’s narrow, your manoeuvre might cause obstruction, so wait for a safe gap in traffic.

3. Move

  • Signal: Indicate your intention to move off if it will benefit other road users.
  • Release Handbrake: Gently release the handbrake while maintaining the biting point (in manual cars).
  • Move Off: Gently and gradually increase the accelerator (in a manual car, simultaneously release the clutch slowly). In an automatic, simply release the brake and gently press the accelerator.
  • Steering: As the car moves, steer slightly away from the parked vehicle, ensuring not to swing out too widely.
  • Give Way to Traffic: If there’s oncoming traffic or vehicles approaching from behind, give way and wait for a clear gap.

Additional Considerations

  • Speed Control: Maintain a slow and controlled speed as you move off, especially in a manual car, using clutch control.
  • Repositioning: Once you’re clear of the parked vehicle, straighten up smoothly and reposition your car appropriately within your lane.
  • Continuous Observations: Keep checking your mirrors and surroundings as you complete the manoeuvre.

Tips

  • Practice: This manoeuvre requires practice to perfect, especially the coordination of clutch control, accelerator, and steering in manual cars.
  • Patience: Wait for a safe gap in traffic. Rushing the manoeuvre could lead to mistakes.
  • Calmness: Stay calm and composed. If you feel you’re too close to the parked car, stop, check, and adjust your position carefully.
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Remember, the key to a successful angled start is smooth control and awareness of your surroundings. While you are being taught by your Bookinstructor ADI, you will expect to practice in different settings to build confidence and skill.

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