ECO Safe Driving

Demonstrating eco-safe driving techniques during your practical driving test has become a requirement since the 10th September 2008.

The assessment made by your examiner will not play a part in you either passing or failing your test but you will be given a high level of feedback regarding this style of driving once you have finished your test.

The driving examiner will make assessments regarding your general driving control and planning, and will then provide you with information regarding how efficient your driving is.

ECO Safe Driving Techniques

The Direct.gov website provides a list of eco-safe driving techniques but we have also added a list below which can prove to be helpful.

Driving Control

Always try to use the vehicle controls as smoothly as possible, with particular attention to:

  • starting and moving away
  • accelerating
  • using gears
  • driving at an appropriate speed

Driving in this manner will reduce the wear and tear on your vehicle and also provide a significant reduction in the CO2 emissions which are released.

Planning

By anticipating road traffic conditions and acting quickly rather than just reacting to them can also help to reduce the harmful emissions released from your car. These techniques include:

  • showing hazard awareness and planning
  • making use of engine braking
  • stopping the engine when appropriate

General ‘Eco-Safe’ Driving Tips

If you wish to improve your levels of road safety whilst driving and keep your fuel economy to its highest levels, please follow these driving tips:

  • check your tyres regularly and keep at recommended pressure
  • don’t carry unnecessary weight
  • remove roof-rack or luggage boxes when not needed to reduce air resistance
  • don’t exceed speed limits, accelerate gently
  • consider using cruise control where it would be appropriate
  • turn off your engine if you’re likely to have a prolonged wait
  • use air conditioning only when you need to
  • plan your route to avoid known congestion points
  • try to travel during off-peak times

Further information on eco-safe driving and riding is available in the leaflet ‘Eco-Safe Driving – a guide to safe driving/riding for economy’. This is handed to candidates at the end of their driving test or can be downloaded.

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