At DrivingMBA, we expose our students to just that possibility, coach them on what to look out for, and what to do if it ever occurs. All of this is done safely on a sophisticated driving simulator.
We conduct demonstrations on the simulator as part of our parent class, and based on what we’ve seen, we can with reasonable certainty predict what an experienced driver would most likely do:
- The initial reaction is almost universally to apply the brakes
- The next move may be to turn the steering wheel to move out of the way, and is almost always initiated too late to be effective
Why is that so? The way most people process information is via pattern recognition. That is how we learn to read, or navigate streets with directional signs. We associate a response with a set of data. If we are heading toward something that we don’t want to hit, we try and stop as the first reaction.
When the object that we are approaching is moving toward us, we have a significantly reduced timeframe to work within. Furthermore, coming to a stop is most likely to be counter to your continued well-being. That is why it is critical to have been exposed to the pattern beforehand, so that the recognition can occur without delay, and the appropriate response can be triggered, which is to get out of the way.
We also know through results that what we do works. The same scenario, in which most experienced drivers will crash when we use it as a demonstration, is incorporated into our curriculum. Most students will successfully avoid the collision, after having been exposed to a similar circumstance earlier in the training.