Friday, 21 June 2013

Got my G!

Here in Ontario we have a "Graduated Licensing  Program" or something along those linse. Unlike many states or places which normally have two statuses, here there are three.

There's G1, G2, and G.

G1 is the typical learners permit that most people have to obtain, here the minimum age is 16. With this you can drive on the road as long as there is an experienced driver at your side (4 years experience or more I believe). It's pretty crazy that all you have to do for this is write a written test. It's simply a theory test, and with that there are 16 year old teens driving these huge metal vehicles.

After that you actually have to do a road test, this means you're driving a specific route with an examiner at your side. It's pretty standard after you pass, you can drive pretty much everywhere on your own. This is when you have your G2, what's different is that here this is still not a full license. There are a few limitations, and when I say that I mean very few. It can be a misconception that G2 drivers are not to drive on the expressway/highway, but in order to pass the  next driving test it is required that one has experience driving on one!

Some things they test you on: parallel or reverse parking, three point turns, hill side parking, changing lanes, complete stops, constant eye movement (mirrors and blind spot). The G2 test is much shorter than the G test. 

The difference is that you cannot have any alcohol in your system when driving, absolutely nothing, nada, zero %. This is regardless of one's license to be fair, anyone under the age of 21 (even with a G) is prohibited to drink and drive. After that the only other difference is that between 12am-5am, G2 drivers with 0-6 months experience can only have one other rider in the car; and between 6 months experience to either G/19 years old one (whichever comes first) one can only have 3 riders in the car.

Any how, today I went to Aurora and was ecstatic to receive a 'pass' from my examiner. I thought that I had done pretty poorly, don't get me wrong I can drive and have a lot of experience now but I also picked up a lot of bad habits - who doesn't! I guess I was lucky since the mistakes didn't accumulate to too much and I didn't make any disqualifying actions!

This is actually my second attempt, the first attempt landed me with a fail since I didn't see the street that the examiner wanted me to turn at until the last minute - I supposedly braked too quickly forcing the car behind me to come to a 'dangerous stop'. It's actually the road "Berzy" right behind the Go Station that caused me to fail but I think it's pretty unfair because it's at the top of the hill. I went back to the area before my test to scout it and remembered this exact spot, the left turn lane is faded too making it really unclear! It also sucks because if you fail halfway they don't even tell you this as they continue to test you on other things such as parking.

This second time also seemed to go by much quicker, we just went down a few rodes, switch lanes, went on the highway 404, did an emergency stop and a parallel park. I was actually super lucky with the parallel since I was asked to park at a spot that had no curb!

Some common mistakes:

  • Not switching into the right lane after a left turn ( you should be driving in the right lane the majority of the time)
  • Forgetting to look down streets as you pass by (through intersections)
  • Not using the parking hand brake (I never use that since I drive an automatic)
  • Not releasing the brake
  • Turning off 4-way signals
  • Not looking around enough/ more eye and head movement


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