How to do The Turnabout (3 Point Turn) – The turnabout is a manoeuvre where you must safely turn your vehicle around on the road to face the opposite direction, it requires slow car speed and rapid steering movement, you should only complete a turn on the road when the traffic conditions make it safe to do so.
There are several variations in carrying out the manoeuvre which you can discuss with your driving instructor on your practical lessons.
Our instructor Nadine who has been teaching for many years offers one way to complete this manoeuvre successfully.
As always we will be carrying out Preparation, Observation, & Manoeuvre routine.
Controlling your vehicle
You must be able to coordinate the foot pedals, steering, gears and handbrake if required.
Being aware of other road users, and making sure that you can see clearly in all directions.
Remember never move out until it’s completely clear and safe to do so.
Using up the maximum road surface without touching either kerb.
Dry steering is permitted on the driving test, however it is not best practice as it causes uneven tyre wear, and unnecessary strain on the rack and pinion system.
On entering the road you will be asked to pull in and stop on the left. Check your rear mirror and left mirror and signal your intention to pull in, making sure that the space you are stopping in is not blocking access to any property or parallel to any vehicle or obstructions.
Secure your vehicle with the handbrake, select neutral, and cancel your signal.
Step 1 : Point 1 of the turn
Select first gear, check all mirrors, signal your intention to move out, make sure you check properly over the right shoulder (the blindspot), release the handbrake and ease the clutch to the biting point.
Some light acceleration might be required. As your vehicle begins to move very slowly, rapidly turn the steering wheel clockwise to full lock if possible.
As you reach the crown of the road, clutch down and cover the brake and counter steer anti clockwise to full lock.
As you draw closer to the kerb apply the footbrake gently to full stop.
You may use the handbrake if you think the camber of the road may cause you to roll into the kerb as you try to reverse.
Remember the handbrake is optional on the driving test.
Step 2 : Point 2 of the turn (Reversing)
Before you reverse it is vitally important that you check over both shoulders (blindspots)
Checking mirrors only at this point without looking over your shoulders, is not only a lack of observation, it may lead to a test to fail.
Select reverse gear and rise up the clutch, this will prevent you from rolling forward when you release the handbrake.
Some light acceleration may be needed as the vehicle moves backwards.
Rapidly turn the steering wheel anticlockwise to full lock until you reach the crown of the road, clutch down and right foot to cover the brake as you counter steer clockwise to full lock.
As you draw closer to the kerb apply the footbrake gently to stop. You can use the handbrake if you feel like the camber of the road will cause you to roll backwards into the kerb as you try to move forward.
If you’re in the middle of the road and another vehicle approaches, don’t panic, make eye contact with the other driver before you contemplate your next move.
If they have clearly stopped for you then you can continue to carry out the rest of the manoeuvre.
Step 3 : Point 3 of the turn (Final move off)
Look out the passenger side window, then in the direction of travel. Find the biting point, and release the handbrake.
Some light accelerations may be required at this stage. Once you’re in the motion turn your steering clockwise enough to complete the turn.
With plenty of practice you too will be able to complete a turnabout successfully.
Remember you may use more than three points to complete this turn.
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