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Judging Distance From Pavement


dave97
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My wife who hasn’t driven for 10 years has now decided to start driving again. We have a Yaris 1.33 and because of the low bonnet she has difficulty in judging how far the car is from the kerb.

She is having refresher driving lessons and the instructor said she should use the centre consul to judge the distance but does anyone have a better idea?

Thanks.

Dave

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If you're following a car ahead, its easy to judge whether you're directly behind its driver or to the left or right of him.

If (from the driver's seat) you're following directly behind the driver in front, then your car is the same distance from the kerb as his....

Also, in the rain, you get tyre tracks from the car ahead and its easy to tell whether you're following in its tyre tracks too...

When parking, and stopping parallel to the kerb, I use the nearside mirror to judge how near the back of the car is to the kerb - if pulling up to the side of the road gradually then the front's not far from that....

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Similarly when parking in a car park or multi storey car park - even if you can't judge the front or back of the car well, if your door mirror lines up with the door mirror of the car next to you, you're probably in an OK position, assuming he's parked OK of course....

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My wife who hasnt driven for 10 years has now decided to start driving again. We have a Yaris 1.33 and because of the low bonnet she has difficulty in judging how far the car is from the kerb.

She is having refresher driving lessons and the instructor said she should use the centre consul to judge the distance but does anyone have a better idea?

Thanks.

Dave

Sit with her, get her about a tyre width from the kerb, that is her stopping poition. Tell her to look along the edge of the kerb, for as far as she can see, then follow the kerb line to where it meets the windscreen/dashboard... wherever that is, get either a marker pen or (Better) a bit of thin tape, like pinstripe tape, and position it where she sees the kerb...She can then re-use the reference line of the tape to the kerb in order to park...

Now, get her about 1 metre from the kerb (or a doorwidth) and stop. do the same thing with the kerb line and sticky tape... That is her safe distance from the kerb to drive!!!

Remember, everyone will have a different reference point, depending on thier hight, seat position, etc so SHE WIL need to sit in the car when it is in the correct spacing from the kerb, so do it on a nice quiet road, with a nice empty length of kerb.

This is how, as an ADI, I teach students to do it.

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She is having refresher driving lessons and the instructor said she should use the centre consul to judge the distance but does anyone have a better idea?

Thanks.

Dave

The Yaris is a small car, judging distances to the kerb will come with time and experience. No ideas on how to help her, its down to perception and driving skill which can’t be taught.

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Another tip you can try doing, is to adjust your mirror downwards when parking against the kerb left or right side.

Great things electric mirrors, for a couple of seconds adjustment saves your nice alloy wheels getting scuffed! :thumbsup:

The amount of times i've seen drivers scuff their wheels against a kerb and they never think to adjust the mirror from the inside of the car so they can see downwards a bit more!! :rolleyes:

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  • 2 weeks later...

I struggle to judge the distance from the pavement too as a woman driver :P

I have had my new Yaris for a week and have found the electric mirrors invaluable. Never had them before! Only takes a couple of seconds and like PP said you save your alloys!

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As much as i'm going to hate to admit this...

I really struggled parking the Yaris. The problem with it is, its very much like a tardis. Small car, but when you get inside it feels HUGE. Which I found throws your perception of where the car ends out entirely!

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Adjusting the mirrors is a great help when reversing but can mislead when going forwards as you may be getting closer to the kerb at the front then the rear veiw makes you think you are!!! (Scrape)!!!

Use the method I mentioned and just keep practicing!

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