Hands on the wheel

Topics relating to Advanced Driving in cars
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Horse
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby Horse » Fri Feb 16, 2018 8:27 pm

Mr Cholmondeley-Warner wrote:
martine wrote:I was sitting alongside a young driver last weekend who did a 45 minute route from South Bristol into some rural twisties and back and did nearly the whole thing one-handed.

Did they crash?

We haven't mentioned it yet, because it's so very obvious we forget, but modern cars with heavily power-assisted steering don't need effort to steer, just directional input.

This was one of the late Sir John Whitmore's pet peeves about the AD community. I haven't turned into him yet, but I don't worry two much about the rigid requirement for two hands at a particular location on the wheel any more.


In his driving book RAC Superdriver, there's a lovely photo of him in a Mini. Drifting sideways, looking and V sign to the cameraman.
My own views. For better or worse :)

allen-uk
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby allen-uk » Sat Feb 17, 2018 11:36 am

martine wrote:
I was sitting alongside a young driver last weekend who did a 45 minute route from South Bristol into some rural twisties and back and did nearly the whole thing one-handed.

Did they crash?


I think the question shouldn't be "Did they crash?", but rather WOULD they have been able to control their vehicle in the event of a blow-out, of a child darting out from behind a parked car, of any one of a dozen other different emergency scenarios.

And although I'm only a very recent arrival on this forum, my unequivocal answer would be NO, they would not have been in good safe control!

Oh, and thanks for the variety of other answers, all of which were interesting.


Allen.

Carbon Based
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby Carbon Based » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:37 pm

What if you’ve only got one hand/arm? (Serious question btw)

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Mr Cholmondeley-Warner
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby Mr Cholmondeley-Warner » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:41 pm

Or the blow-out had occurred while they were changing gear?

Have you experimented with rapid changes of direction in reaction to a hypothetical unforeseen circumstance? Do you believe you can create more steering input with two hands, or one?
Nick

martine
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby martine » Sat Feb 17, 2018 11:22 pm

Mr Cholmondeley-Warner wrote:Or the blow-out had occurred while they were changing gear? [/bquote]
That's unavoidable use of one-handed steering.
Have you experimented with rapid changes of direction in reaction to a hypothetical unforeseen circumstance? Do you believe you can create more steering input with two hands, or one?

I don't know but I imagine you could put lots of steering on quickly with a single hand but are you able to steer accurately? I can't see Lewis Hamilton steering one-handed through Eau Rouge at 180mph. From a human mechanincs perspective, it makes sense to me to have balanced. accurate steering, you need to keep 2 hands gripping or at least in contact with, the wheel.
Martin - Bristol IAM: IMI National Observer, Group Secretary, Masters (dist), DSA: ADI, Fleet, RoSPA (Dip)

waremark
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby waremark » Sun Feb 18, 2018 2:12 am

Mr Cholmondeley-Warner wrote:Or the blow-out had occurred while they were changing gear?

Have you experimented with rapid changes of direction in reaction to a hypothetical unforeseen circumstance? Do you believe you can create more steering input with two hands, or one?

You can create quite a lot of steering input rapidly with one hand if it is in the right place. But it may not be in the right place for the direction you need to turn the wheel. In which case you will do better if the other hand is standing by to take over. I consider that while it is possible to steer with one hand, it is safer if the other is standing by to take over for as much of the time as possible - as is the case when using either pull push or rotational.

As to the Swedish police instructors referred to a bit ago, the system they advocated for steering on slippery surfaces was holding the wheel with two hands at 25 to 5, but using one hand only to turn it starting with an upward push. The pushing hand can turn the wheel 330 degrees very fast, and the other hand can then take over if required. I have tried their system on the road and it doesn't give me good control.

hir
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby hir » Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:04 am

martine wrote:The previous replies have nicely avoided your question.

I think it would raise the examiners eyebrows if on test, the candidate were to use one-handed steering...in fact I am sure it would result in a fail unless it was fleeting. There is a new 'flexibility' in what steering method is acceptable on test but it still has to be smooth, safe and in control. I would argue one-handed steering puts you at an unnecessary risk - admittedly small in some situations. On the other hand, what is the advantage of one-handed steering?



Agreed.

The full criteria is that the steering must be... "Safe; Accurate; Smooth; and with the vehicle under complete control at all times".

Arguments in support of drivers who choose to drive using one hand(excluding the use of specially adapted vehicles) will generally focus on the criteria of "Safe" inasmuch as the driver drove from A to B without crashing, so it must have been "Safe". This argument ignores the criteria... "with the vehicle under complete control at all times". It can obviously be argued that the vehicle was "under control" [it didn't crash], but not so easy to argue that it was under "complete control". It is this last criteria that would cause a candidate to be marked down, probably failed, on an IAM or RoSPA test.

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Horse
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby Horse » Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:13 am

Back to the TV obdocs, where police drivers are often seen in pursuits, one hand on the wheel the other working the radio. Is it a special part of their training that civvies don't get? ;) - especially when part of the commentary often includes the risk assessment 'safe to continue' :)
My own views. For better or worse :)

allen-uk
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby allen-uk » Sun Feb 18, 2018 11:28 am

Carbon Based wrote:What if you’ve only got one hand/arm? (Serious question btw)


I was at Stanmore orthopaedic hospital recently (I'm a leg amputee) and met a guy with no hands and one leg. He was brighter and had more spirit than many non-disabled people I've met.

Anyway, out in the car park he got into his BMW convertible, locked his 'hand' onto an adapter on the steering wheel, and drove off, apparently in full control of the vehicle. In his case, I suspect that his concentration on his driving put him in at the safer end of drivers.

Having told that story, I do start to see how steering with one hand can (in limited circumstances) be safe.

Allen.

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jcochrane
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Re: Hands on the wheel

Postby jcochrane » Thu Mar 01, 2018 11:38 am

Many moons ago I was asked to organise a team of examiners for a driving competition for disabled drivers. One of those I tested had no arms and steered by way of a large wooden wheel in the footwell which he twirled expertly round with his foot.

Probably the best one armed driver I've driven with was the wonderful Jane Stewart~Smith. She compensated by the use of an incredibly high level of observation.

Have others noticed how many pull/push steerers are not very smooth?


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