News in from the department of the bleeding obvious, sorry, Admiral insurance: parents are not as good as professional driving instructors when it comes to teaching younglings to drive.
A recent survey has got under the bonnet of 1,705 parents and 373 learner drivers and discovered that almost half of the parents (45 per cent) were worried they’d pass on their own bad habits – speeding, being rubbish at checking their mirrors – to their offspring. Half of the teenagers polled were more worried about being shouted at. Teens? In charge of a tonne of precious metal? Not knowing what they’re doing? I can’t imagine why there’d be raised voices.
I was lucky enough to be given driving lessons for my 17th birthday, many moons ago. That didn’t stop me venturing out with a parent, though. Despite being one of the shoutiest people I know, surprisingly I don’t remember any nuclear rows, although I once stupidly asked what the clutch did and Dad only came up for air 25 minutes later. (The answer I wanted? You push it with your foot so you can change gear.)
My mother was rather more chilled out, helping me with my driving practice by directing me to country pubs, filling her boots and slurrily directing me home. Not to be recommended, and not a DVLA-approved approach. She wasn’t quite so relaxed a few years earlier when she gave me an impromptu driving lesson during which I confused the accelerator for the brake. And destroyed a neighbour’s fence. I can’t think why parents don’t make good instructors...