Driving tips on how to reverse around a corner
When you’re learning to drive, there are many manoeuvres that can be hard to master. Three-point turns, the rules of roundabouts and getting to grips with clutch control can all prove tricky.
However, there’s one manoeuvre that many learner drivers cite as the one they find most hard to get right – and that’s reversing around a corner.
If you’re learning to drive and you’re looking for some step by step tips on how to reverse around a corner successfully, read on…
Look around you
In your driving test, your examiner will be watching you to make sure you’re looking out for any potential hazards as you execute your reverse around a corner. So, ensure you check for a) traffic, b) road conditions and c) pedestrians. Once you’ve checked for these three points and you believe you’re safe to carry out the manoeuvre, go ahead and reverse around the corner.
Pull into the kerb
Drive past the corner you wish to reverse around and pull into the kerb so that you’re about 0.5m away from it at a point that is roughly two car lengths beyond the junction you’ll be reversing around.
Check the rear window and your mirrors to ensure you are in a safe position to perform your reverse around a corner. If you need to, you can take your seatbelt off to look out of your rear window and perform the remainder of the move, but you don’t have to – it’s whatever you’re most comfortable with.
If it’s clear to do so, put the car into reverse gear and move the car off slowly – don’t use your indicators.
Watch the kerb
As you reverse, look over your left shoulder and check the rear window as you drive back. As you near the corner you should lose sight of the kerb as it disappears behind the car pillar. It will then begin to appear in your rear side window. Once you see this, make sure you turn the steering wheel to the left…
How much you turn the wheel to the left depends on how sharp the corner is. If it’s a very sharp corner – a corner that’s like a 90’ right angle for instance – then you’ll need to turn the steering wheel fully to the left…
When you’re reversing around a wide corner, you won’t need to turn the steering wheel fully to the left.
Instead, you’ll have to gauge how much you need to turn it by keeping a keen eye on the kerb and the bend of the road. The first few times you reverse around a corner is always nerve-racking and often hard to get right, but once you’ve put in plenty of practice and gained confidence, you’ll soon pick it up.
As you begin to reverse around the corner, the front of your car will swing out into the road, so make sure you are constantly checking all around the car for any other traffic or pedestrians that could cause hazards. If the road is clear, continue with your reverse around a corner…
Get it straight
Once you’re round the corner, straighten your vehicle up by checking that the kerb is parallel to your car out of the rear window. Make sure you look out of the front of the car as well, as a car could come round the corner at any point. If a vehicle does come round the corner while you are performing your manoeuvre, stop what you’re doing and wait for them to pass. Once the route is safe and clear, then you may continue.
Make sure you line your car up so that it is close to the kerb but not touching or mounting it.
Make it safe
Once you’re happy with the positioning of your car, it’s time to make it safe. Do this by engaging your handbrake and putting the car into neutral.
If you took your seatbelt off to perform this move, now is the time to put it back on again so that you’re ready to continue with your driving safely.
If you follow this procedure and make sure you keep a look out as you reverse around a corner, you should soon be able to complete the move with ease.
Don’t worry if it doesn’t happen first time – it rarely does. Remember, practice makes perfect and you’re more likely to succeed if you keep calm, don’t stress and take your time.
Being a good driver has a lot to do with confidence, and becoming confident at something doesn’t happen immediately so don’t be hard on yourself if it takes a few goes to get it right.
Once you’ve mastered it, there’ll be no turning back!