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On your driving test, when performing a downhill start, the examiner will expect you to:


  • Move off safely and under control on a gradient

  • Use the MSM/PSL routine

  • Check your blind spot for traffic and pedestrians

  • Make balanced use of the accelerator

  • Clutch, brakes and steering

  • Use the appropriate gear

Driving Downhill
The danger here is that driving down hill can make your car pick up unwanted speed. Slowing your car down by only using the brakes isn't best practice, as this can overheat the brakes making them lose effectiveness. You should also use the engine brake. Do this by changing into a lower gear. The steeper the hill the lower the gear you should use.

Remember when driving downhill your stopping distance increases especially if the road is wet. The risk of skidding also increases so engage your brakes gently and try and leave a four second gap between you and any vehicle in front.

Don't coast - driving with your clutch pedal pressed down or in neutral - as this will make your car run faster.

Avoid braking on bends, as doing so can increase the chances of skidding.
Keep the correct seperation distance from any vehicle in front of you, at least 2 seconds on a good dry road


Warning Signs

When approaching a hill you will see a warning sign that tells you how steep the upward slope is.
The figure shown as a percentage (in the image 10%) tells you the gradient of the slope. So 10% means for every ten 
feet along (horizontal) the road rises one foot (vertical).


Parking On a Hill
Make sure your handbrake is firmly engaged. If facing downhill turn the front wheels into the kerb and put the car into reverse gear. If facing uphill turn the wheels away from the kerb and engage first gear.




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