A Testing Time

I was shaking like a leaf. Today was test day. I had already passed the written tests and undergone all the trainingi could pack in. Now I had to prove myself worthy of the licence.

It was a lot more detailed that the test I underwent in England. They take the transport of children very seriously. It started out with the full pre trip inspection with questions thrown at me all the way round. My examiner was a very nice lady. Smiling and attempting to make me relax but still all business. Once I had completed that, if you fail you don’t drive, it was out onto the road.
I was expecting some driving to help me settle down but all I glt was a short stint and then onto the exercises.
These were a little un-nearving as I had to do them without the examiner being on the bus. She was standing by the road watching my everymove. They went fairly smoothly I just went a little too far back (6 inches) on the ally dock but she was ok with that. When I was asked to pull over and do my hill parking she picked a really bad spot but used the phrase “when its safe and legal to do so…”
Finally after about 30 mins of those it was off out onto the road for driving and pickups. I had to talk my way through the pickup and it was a good thing too. The examiner really liked it.
The driving portion was shorter than I expected and there was no in town driving. I asked my instructor about that and he said that if they are happy then they don’t bother with it. We made it back to the test center and she sat for a moment and looked at her sheet and then said “I am pleased to say you passed and I would be happy to let my kids ride with you”

Thus begins my school bus driving.

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Ask The Driver

Now that I am writing again I will restart the Ask The Driver feature that ran on this blog. Start thinking of questions you can ask me and watch here and twitter for the date to send them in.

Training

Ah the training.

My trainer was and is still a very nice guy. He is very knowing about the ins and outs of what I need to know for the test and also what I will need to know on the route. Unlike english school runs these are fairly controlled and well maintained. The actual requirements for the test were harsh but understandable. I would have to perform several manouvers. These are: Offset parking, the alley dock and reversing in a straight line. Also tested would be my driving skills and student pick up and drop off.

Not only would my driving be closely watched but I would also have to perform a pre-trip inspection on my bus. This basically makes sure that the bus is safe to use and suitable for kids to ride on.

It took me a while to get into the swing of it as there is so much to remember but I think that my exprience in the UK helped me out a lot here and once I had it figured out everything started falling into place and I was able to go through the inspection fairly quickly.
The driving was easy once I had figured out my bus size and I was able to get the manouvers done very quickly and well from the start. Once I was happy and my trainer was satisfied we applied for my test.