driving courseIf you’ve had your license for more than a decade, you’re probably wondering how you could benefit from signing up for drivers ed classes. While it’s true that the easiest (and usually most effective) way to learn is by doing, there are a few very good reasons why you should take a class to learn more about it, especially if you’re a part of the 86% of Americans who commute to work. You may not need to take lessons on a driving course or practice driving if you’ve been doing so successfully for years — you probably have that part down — but here are four excellent perks of signing up for drivers education as an adult.

  1. It is always good to brush up on your knowledge. If you didn’t have to take driving classes when you were getting your license, you’re going to be surprised about the amount of information you learn in a single, classroom-setting course. From basic information such as what certain road signs mean to heartfelt videos about car crash survivors highlighting the dangers of driving while intoxicated, the experience will be worth your time. You might learn a certain statistic — such as the fact that only 65% of teens wear their seat belts consistently — that shocks you and changes the way you drive (or, if you have children, changes the way you teach them).
  2. You can set a good example for your kids. Many parents sign their children up for drivers ed courses despite never having taken one themselves. It can be hard to reinforce what your child is learning if you’re completely unaware of it — taking a driving course with your son or daughter can strengthen the bond between the two of you in an act of solidarity while also showing them (through actions, not words) that responsible people seek out knowledge that will help them even if it isn’t required of them.
  3. It enables you to familiarize yourself with new traffic rules and laws. In 2005, Arizona passed the Move Over law which requires drivers to move over one lane for safety if they see someone pulled over to the side of the road. This is a relatively new law that carries hefty fines if not obeyed — driving courses make sure you have all the information necessary to keep you and other drivers safe if you’re going to be out on the road.
  4. It can save you money. Everybody loves saving a little extra cash when they can, and successfully completing a driving course, either online or in class, can do just that. By offering an insurance discount, some drivers in Arizona can get up to 20% off their current rates! If that’s not motivation to get yourself into a program at your local driving school, we don’t know what is.

Knowledge is power. Be better, safer driver and sign up for drivers ed classes today.

drivers ed classes

Drivers education is a wonderfully beneficial tool created to help young people understand the ins and outs of the road; unfortunately, driving classes aren’t required to obtain your license, meaning many teens and young adults go out on the road without all the proper training and information. This is especially true of certain states which have specific driving laws unique to their state governments, such as Arizona.

Know Your State
Statistics show that Americans drive least between January through March, due to the winter; however, the “winter” in Arizona is considered the best time of the year, attracting tourists and vacationers from all across the country. This makes the winter months a much busier time than it would be in, say, the Northeast, and requires new drivers to be much more vigilant in their day-to-day routines. Hesitation is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents, so finding drivers ed classes to ensure that your child has all the necessary drivers training to proceed safely and confidently on the road can make the difference between a successful grocery trip and a totaled car.

Know the Law
All states have impaired and drunk driving laws in place to protect drivers and pedestrians, but they each vary in terms of the severity of the punishment. It’s always best to avoid the risk if you’ve had a drink or two, but knowing what you might be risking (other than your life and the lives of other drivers on the road) can make you appreciate your freedom to make that choice all the more. In Arizona, an “implied consent” rule allows any officer who has arrested a driver under suspicion of impaired driving to administer a field test of their blood alcohol content. Refusal of this test translates to an immediate surrender and suspension of your license, from 12 months for first time offenders to two years for repeaters, accompanied by a hefty fine and potential jail time.

Arizona also has its own Move Over Law, requiring motorists to move over one lane when they see someone pulled over to the side of the road. If there is no space to move over, you are required to slow down until you have fully and safely passed by. Failure to comply with this law constitutes a moving violation and can come with a fine varying from $150 to $650, not to mention endangering the lives of those who are pulled over by refusing to give them their space.

Practice, Practice, Practice
The good news about all this scary information is that there are drivers ed classes that lay it all out for you or your children in an in-depth, non-intimidating way. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, traffic lessons and driving courses exist to help them get acclimated to the at-first terrifying prospect of driving on their own. The more you practice, the better you’ll get, whether it’s understanding what a certain traffic sign means or just navigating the high speeds of expressways and thruways.

Drivers ed classes are available to everyone, whether you’re 16 years old and your parents are forcing you to take them, or you’re 45 and just want to refresh your memory and potentially learn something new that you weren’t aware of in your previous years of driving. Sign up today and make the roads in Arizona safer than ever before!

adult driving classes

Earlier this year, a 49-year-old Arizona woman was killed after being struck by one of Uber’s autonomous vehicles. It was a tragedy that sparked debate and incited doubt regarding the actual safety of autonomous vehicles. The testing program was put on hold and investigations have been ongoing ever since.

There are 214 million licensed drivers in the United States and one of them was behind the wheel of the autonomous vehicle as its safety operator. She was in charge of taking over control of the vehicle in the case of a technological malfunction or situations the AI didn’t recognize. Adult driving classes and any traffic lessons for those looking to learn to drive teach about distracted driving. A lot of accidents can be avoided by paying close attention to the road and your surroundings while driving.

police report showed that the driver of the vehicle was watching TV when the pedestrian was killed. She was reportedly streaming an episode of The Voice while in the autonomous driving mode, behind the wheel.

“The report found that car operator, Rafaela Vasquez, looked up from her phone screen just half a second before the crash. The car was moving at 44 mph and did not brake before the accident.”

Uber has a strict policy regarding safety drivers using their mobile devices while behind the wheel, regardless of the vehicle’s autonomy. They’re fully cooperating with further investigations of the incident and the new information carries the possibility of vehicular manslaughter charges for the driver.

This tragedy reflects the importance of operator awareness, regardless of the helpful safety technologies that are becoming more ubiquitous with modern vehicles. The technological features of new cars are meant to supplement the lessons learned in driving school. Adult driving classes are especially important now as vehicles are coming with more advanced features as standard.

The road isn’t a place to be distracted, whether it’s by the technological features of your car, your phone, passengers, it doesn’t matter. It takes mere seconds of distraction to take a road trip from good time to tragedy. Your responsibility as a driver is to all the others around you. When that’s the direction you drive yourself, everyone (including you) will be much safer.

beginner driving course

When a police officer believes that a driver may be operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, they’ll check for signs of impairment. One of the most common tests for driver impairment taught in beginner driving school is a breathalyzer test. A breathalyzer test helps to determine a driver’s blood alcohol concentration, also known as BAC.

Police officers can’t force drivers to submit to a breathalyzer test and not every driver decides to partake in the test. However, refusing to comply with a police officer’s request for a breath sample may result in legal penalties.

Implied consent laws and what they mean
In the United States, there are up to 214 million licensed drivers. When these drivers apply for a driver’s license, they are agreeing to the country’s implied consent laws. These laws determine that a driver consents to taking an impairment test if requested by a police officer should they be pulled over on the road with reasonable suspicion.

If a driver decides not to partake in the breathalyzer test or another impairment test after being requested to do so by an officer, the driver’s license may be automatically suspended. Other legal penalties may also be applied to the driver depending on the circumstances.

It should be noted that implied consent laws exist across all 50 states, but the consequences for refusing to take the impairment tests may vary depending on the state in which you live. The standard penalty in most states is a suspension of one’s license for anywhere between six and 12 months. The length of the suspension may go up depending on the driver’s past history of DUI convictions.

Penalties for refusing an impairment test
In a beginner driving course, the types of additional penalties for refusing to take an impairment test in your state may be mentioned. However, it’s important to know other penalties in additional states if you choose to travel.

For instance, in the state of California, a driver may be exempted from a refusal charge if they consent to a blood draw after they’ve initially refused to take a breathalyzer test. However, if the driver continues to refuse to take any test, they may receive a citation. In New York, an additional $500 fine may be applied to an automatic six-month license suspension.

It’s essential to know the driving laws of your state when you’re driving, but especially when taking a beginner driving course, be it an adult driving course or otherwise. You may be pulled over under suspicion of intoxication if you’re not intoxicated.

For this reason, it’s important to understand during your beginner driving course the consequences of refusing an impairment test should you decide to refuse the test. Refusing an impairment test doesn’t automatically convict you of DUI.

driving schoolAlthough we all like to think we are safe drivers, “safe” can actually be a relative term. In some cases, it actually depends on where you live (or where you drive). Laws are always changing, and the state regulations or general tips that apply to Arizona residents might not apply to drivers across the nation. Since 56% of teens rely on their parents to learn to drive, it’s important that you familiarize yourself with these important standards either on your own or through a driving school course. If you are pulled over, your ignorance of the law won’t be a valid excuse! Here are three rules (both legally enforced and otherwise) that can help you stay safe on Arizona roads.

  1. There is no such thing as a legal BAC level.
    If you’ve ever taken drivers education classes, you’ve probably learned a bit about driving under the influence and why you should never do it. But young drivers might be surprised to learn that even if they have only a tiny bit of alcohol and get behind the wheel, they could still be legally cited for a DUI. Arizona law says any amount of alcohol in a driver’s system could leave them vulnerable to being charged with a DUI. If your blood-alcohol level is .08% or above, you’ll definitely be fined or arrested. However, you could be cited for literally any level of intoxication if a police officer thinks you’re impaired. For this reason and many others, drinking and driving is a no-go.
  2. You need to be familiar with roundabouts.
    If you’ve never driven on a roundabout before, you’ll need to do so. They’re becoming much more prevalent throughout the state, as they’re generally seen as safer and less-expensive to operate. However, they can be intimidating for a new driver. Haven’t encountered them during your traffic lessons yet? As you approach, slow down and yield to pedestrians and oncoming traffic. You may have a stop sign to follow, but you should always look to your left and yield to those already in the circle. When there’s a gap, put on your signal, enter the traffic circle, and proceed to your exit. When you go out to practice driving, make sure you head to a roundabout at least a couple of times.
  3. Cities make their own texting-while-driving laws.
    The state of Arizona does not yet have a state-wide law pertaining to texting while driving or even being on the phone while operating a vehicle. However, many cities and counties do. Tucson is located in a county that now has a no-texting-while-driving law. It’s illegal in Phoenix to send or receive a non-voice communication on a wireless device while driving, too. As a general rule, you should refrain from using your phone while driving unless it’s an absolute emergency. In driving school, your trainers will help you understand how important this is and how one text message isn’t worth risking your life.

Of course, your parents can impart a lot of driving wisdom. But only in driving school will you learn more about up-to-date legislation that impacts you and the proper ways to handle tricky situations. To find out more about signing up for drivers education in Arizona, contact us today.

drivers ed practice tests

A lot of teenagers simply can’t wait to get behind the wheel. But while the freedom a driver’s license provides can be exciting, it’s important to keep that excitement in check. Unfortunately, the combination of lack of experience, smartphones, and incomplete brain development has the potential to have dangerous consequences out on the open road. Nearly 20% of 11th graders have reported being the driver in a car crash within the last year. Fortunately, many of the mistakes that often lead to serious accidents can be avoided. That is, as long as these young drivers are aware of the pitfalls from the moment they start to practice driving. Below, you’ll find three common mistakes teen drivers are likely to make. This list will help young drivers be better prepared for whatever comes their way and can help them avoid making these catastrophic mistakes themselves.

  1. Distraction
    Distraction can be a problem for drivers of any age, but it’s especially serious for teen drivers. When you first learn to drive, nothing will be automatic. While some things will eventually become second nature (like turning your brights on and off or adjusting your windshield wiper speed), complete concentration is particularly important in those early stages. That means that everything from eating and changing the radio station to GPS navigation and (of course) texting should be off-limits. Your focus should be on the road and on your surroundings, not on passengers in the backseat or on your phone. Taking your eyes off the road for even a second can have disastrous consequences.
  2. Speeding and Tailgating
    Inexperienced drivers will often underestimate how fast they’re going or how much time they need to come to a proper stop. And if they’re learning how to drive from a family member, rather than through driving courses and drivers ed practice tests, they’re likely to imitate unsafe driving behaviors they see. Traveling above the speed limit (particularly in inclement weather) or failing to maintain the proper following distance can easily cause an accident. As a rule, you should maintain at least a three-second gap between your car and the one in front of you. At a stop light, make sure you have a full car’s length of space between your car and the one in front. When the speed limit increases, so should this following distance. If you feel unsafe traveling at the speed limit posted, don’t feel pressured to go too fast before you’re ready. (Driving at too low a speed can also be dangerous, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.)
  3. Taking Unnecessary Risks
    Not only does a 16- or 17-year-old have less experience out on the road than other drivers, but the frontal lobe of their brain — the portion that is responsible for behavior and judgment — is not yet fully developed. In fact, studies have shown that this rational part of the brain won’t reach its full capacity until a person turns 25 or so. This means that a teenager will be more likely to make errors in judgment and fail to anticipate what other drivers will do (or how they should react in these circumstances). Taking drivers ed practice tests will help prepare them for the skills they need to display on an exam, but traffic lessons will help them apply these principles to the real world. Overcompensating for mistakes or underestimating the speed of another driver can make a bad situation much worse. Comprehensive driving courses or one-on-one lessons can be a great supplement to drivers ed practice tests, as they’ll give teen drivers a more complete picture of what to expect once they’re on their own. It takes time to become a truly excellent driver, so make sure your teen driver understands why it’s important to be patient and not rush the process.

Your teen might be eager to just get through their drivers ed practice tests and schedule their exam, but being overly hasty to get their license could spell trouble. Make sure you communicate with your teen about these common mistakes and how they can avoid engaging in dangerous driving behaviors. And of course, signing them up for driving school can help, too!

traffic lessonsA defensive driving class, sometimes called traffic lessons, aims to strengthen driving skills, reiterate traffic rules, and teach tactics on how to be safer behind the wheel. Unlike a beginner driving course, when you take traffic lessons you are expected to already have your license. People take defensive driving courses for a variety of reasons, some of which may include:

  • Point reduction or removal from a traffic ticket
  • Reinstatement of a driver’s license
  • Lower insurance premiums
  • To further enhance driving skills

Even as an adult, it’s important to continue learning about driving safety. After all, the leading cause of injury and death in the workplace is motor vehicle collisions, and the cost of just one accident could be as high as $1.4 million.

How to Prepare For Your Course

  1. Know the rules in your state. Traffic lessons may vary depending on where you live, so make sure you do research about the required amount of hours, time frame, and type of course allowed in your state.
  2. Find a driving school location near you. Classes are also offered online so you can choose the method that works best with your schedule.
  3. Expect to spend between six to eight hours in the course. Some courses are shorter and some are longer, depending on the state requirements. Online courses typically allow you to complete the course in sessions as long as it’s completed within the given time period.
  4. Anticipate having to take at least one quiz during the course. Quizzes allow you the trainer to ensure you’re learning the material. Most courses do not have a final exam at the end, but it varies from state to state.
  5. Make sure it satisfies all of your requirements. If you’re taking the course because it was ordered by a judge, check with the court to make sure you don’t need to take a specific course. For some violations, an online course will not be accepted. Non-moving violations cannot be removed by a defensive driving course. You also cannot take a defensive driving course to remove points from a DWI or DUI. For these violations, you may be required to take a specific driving course.
  6. Be prepared. If you’re going to be sitting in a classroom for 8 hours, make sure you get enough sleep so you’ll be able to focus the entire time. Bring any required materials, including your license, insurance information, and anything given to you by a judge. Additionally, bring water and a lunch or snacks with you.

Some people think that after they’ve gotten their license, they no longer need to learn about driving safety. But while it varies among states and age groups, it’s been clearly shown that fatality and accidents rates decrease among drivers who take defensive driving courses. Traffic lessons can be a great way to enhance your driving skills and ensure you’re being as safe and as responsible as possible while driving.

adult driving courseWhile many American teenagers can’t wait to get their license, the desire to drive isn’t universal. In fact, driving-related anxieties and even phobias are quite common. And even though 86% of U.S. workers commuted by car in 2013, that doesn’t mean that everyone wants to learn to drive. Unfortunately, a fear of driving has the potential to hold you back from pursuing a number of opportunities. Below, we’ll discuss a few of the reasons people are scared to drive and how driving classes might help you get past your fears.

  1. Past Experiences
    If someone has been in a car accident or associates driving with some kind of traumatic event, they may be understandably reluctant to get behind the wheel. Most of our fears aren’t rational, and many people worry that their prior experience (be it a panic attack, an instance of road rage, or driving through a horrible storm) might happen again. As a result, that individual might avoid the situation entirely, meaning that they won’t want to drive at all. Ultimately, this makes it very difficult to break the cycle; even when working around the issue can be tough, it’s often easier to face than the alternative.
  2. Crashing
    Getting in an accident can be physically and/or emotionally devastating for many people, and unfortunately, these incidents do happen. That’s why defensive driving is so important However, when a fear of crashing keeps you from wanting to practice driving at all, you might benefit from taking an adult driving course or signing up for individual lessons. Sometimes, when inexperienced drivers feel pressure from others on the road, they might be inclined to make unsafe choices just to get out of the way. In your driving classes, you’ll learn much better techniques for dealing with other drivers in highly trafficked areas. Rather than traveling at unsafe speeds, you’ll learn how to travel safely and calmly.
  3. Unfamiliar Locations
    Many people don’t really learn to navigate until they take driving classes and get into the driver’s seat. And because we rely so much on our GPS and navigating apps, it can be tough to really get a feel for a particular location (even if it’s your home town!). But for a lot of people, driving somewhere strange can send their anxiety skyrocketing. The idea of being away from home and not knowing what might happen can convince some people not to drive at all.

So what can you do about driving fears?
For one thing, an adult driving course can provide you with a lot of valuable information. The fear of the unknown is real, and the more knowledge you have, the calmer you’ll probably feel. Plus, an adult driving course can allow you to face your fears in a more controlled environment, with trainers who understand your hesitations and the common issues inexperienced drivers may have. You might also benefit from individual sessions with an trainer, as these can be tailored to tackle your anxieties in a productive way. However, if your fear of driving is such that you can’t face the idea of operating a vehicle, you might want to consider speaking to a therapist or a trusted friend or relative.

Any kind of anxiety can be a challenge to overcome, but with the proper guidance, you will likely be able to face your fears and become an even more confident (and competent) driver as a result.

driving classesAmericans drive a lot. On average, we drive 29.2 miles per day, making two trips with the average total duration of 46 minutes. But spending all this time behind the wheel sometimes makes it hard for the average driver to remember all the rules of the road. In fact, there are so many different things to remember that it can seem overwhelming every time you get behind the wheel.

After receiving a license, most drivers never are tested on the things they learned in their driving classes. This is why it pays to continuously invest in drivers education to stay up to date with the rules of the road. So here are some little-known road tips and tricks and traffic lessons that will help you stay up to date when driving around town.

  • There’s a method behind the numbers of the thruways
    Ever wonder where all the numbers come from for the interstate highways? There are a few things these numbers can tell you:

    • If a highway has an odd number, it is traveling north to south.
    • If the highway is even, it is traveling east to west.
    • For three-digit interstate highways, if the first digit is even, the highway connects to another interstate at either end.
    • Typically, the last two numbers for a three-digit interstate tells you what other interstate the route comes from.
  • When it comes to funerals, keep your space
    In many states, it is unlawful to willingly interrupt or interfere any funeral procession. There most likely will be a police officer at the beginning and end of the procession, so find them and keep your distance.
  • The number of the exit corresponds with the miles driven
    While this isn’t a rule, it is helpful when driving on the expressway. The number of the exit corresponds with the location of the exit. For example, if you are at exit 47 and you need to get to exit 50, you have three more miles to go. Knowing this ahead of time makes it easier for you to prepare what side to get off.
  • Look at a truck driver in your lane for a clue about traffic
    It is a common practice for semi-truck drivers to put their hazard lights on when the traffic is coming to an abrupt stop.

It is important to think of every time you get behind the wheel as a driving course. Your driving classes never stop, so remember these rules and buckle up!

defensive driving classIt’s true that a defensive driving class can save you a lot of money on car insurance. This is often a big incentive for those who decide to take these courses. However, a defensive driving class has a benefit bigger than saving you money or helping you fantasize your action scenes when your favorite director conveniently finds you in the Hollywood Squares.

And that benefit is, unsurprisingly, being able to save your own life. This is especially important on the road nowadays not just because of mannequin deer, but because of the increasing number of incidents involving drunk driving. So if you’re out on the road one night and you happen to see a drunk driver in your midst, here are some ways defensive driving classes can save your neck:

Readiness for evasive action
Evasive action isn’t just for the FBI or Jason Bourne, it’s also important for when you learn to drive. Teenagers are more than 10 times more likely to get into a car accident during their first year of driving than any other driver. This is because they often don’t know how to react on the road when objects, animals, and other drivers wind up in places where they shouldn’t be.

A defensive driving course in addition to traffic lessons can help you be able to identify possible road hazards before they become dangerous, such as identifying a drunk driver before they pass over into your lane. Some of the common signs another driver’s BAC has passed .08% is if they:

  • Weave on the road
  • Are driving in the center of the road
  • Make too wide a turn
  • Swerve abruptly
  • Turn suddenly
  • Break suddenly
  • Give inconsistent signals
  • Have a slow reaction time to other traffic signals

It’s important if you find a drunk driver that you don’t attempt to follow them or get them to stop. This can put you in harm’s way. Instead, continue to drive legally using correct traffic signals and be prepared to take evasive action should they cross over into your lane. If you can, consider pulling over and calling the police to notify them of the drunken driver.

Changing the way you drive
Driving classes may teach you the rules of the road, but a defensive driving class will teach you how to behave correctly when others disobey those rules. These types of classes allow you to recognize challenges, but they also teach you not to underestimate other drivers and the impact of a simple hazard. A squirrel on the road, for instance, can cause a lot more damage than you would think.

Defensive driving teaches you to be vigilant and to react in such a way that is safe and knowledgeable rather than reactionary. And it’s that that will keep you safe on the road from drunk drivers and other road hazards.