Friday, February 18, 2011

Discussing about road safety in English - Essay writing


Warm up:

1. Do you know how to ride a bicycle? If yes,

a) When did you learn to cycle?
b) Do you ride your bicycle everyday?
c) Do you use the main traffic roads or by-lanes?
d) What are the traffic signals you cross on your way?

2. If you don’t ride bicycles, how do you commute to school, shop,
theatre, etc.

3. Who do you think is the most irresponsible person on the street:

The private vehicle driver (cars, jeeps, vans), the public vehicle
driver (autos, buses, lorries, etc.), the two-wheeler riders, the
cyclists or the pedestrians? Discuss your opinions.


I must tell you about my brother Santharam’s road sense! He’s
just twenty-five but he sits behind the steering wheel as if he’s
been there all his life! He will not speed beyond the 40kph limit
nor will he overtake a vehicle going slowly ahead of him. He’ll
wait calmly at the signals and even if the amber has turned to
green he will not accelerate if pedestrians are still on the zebra
crossing, even if all vehicles behind him are hooting their horns.
When I turned twenty-one, I asked Dad to let me go to a driving
school. Mom emphatically said ‘No’ but after a pause she said, “If
you must learn driving you will learn only from Santharam and no
one else”. Santharam was at first reluctant, but bridling this
scooterist in the confines of a car was a challenge he couldn’t
resist, so thus began my Sunday lessons!

“Be up at 5 am” he said, and added, “It’s better to learn on a
clear road with no traffic because, later when you start using a car
regularly you get caught in traffic jams during rush hours and may
not enjoy driving. So enjoy it while you may now!” He took me
through the drill of identifying the parts of the car and finally made
me sit in the driver’s seat and very piously taught me how to fasten
the seat belt.

“After getting into the car, always remember to fasten your
seat belt,” he said. “Yes, I’ll do that,” I answered, and took his
instructions through the weekends on starting the car, revving the engine,
controlling acceleration, clutch and brake, changing gears,
steering the wheel till I was ready to take the car out during
moderate traffic. I was taught to drive on the inside lane and avoid
the fast lanes unless in an emergency. I was advised against overtaking
on the left and going beyond the speed limit. He instructed
me on identifying road signs, to look at them carefully and to follow
accordingly. It might be a ‘No Entry’ sign, ‘A school zone’ or a
‘One-way’ sign. He told me to watch out for ‘Speed breaker Ahead’
signs or ‘U-turn’ ones and insisted that I respect ‘No horn’ signs
near hospitals.

The day I went for my driving licence is unforgettable.
The RTO officer was awe-struck when he saw the mature way
I handled the wheel. He couldn’t believe it was the same guy who
had come to him a year ago for a two-wheeler licence and had
driven the scooter like a maniac!

Now I have my own car and I’m here at the Motor Insurance
office to take an Accident Insurance Policy. My brother has taught
me well, but he says that insurance is a must irrespective of how
good a driver you are! I am now on to learning how to maintain
my car, when and where to service it, and what a vehicle
owner’s responsibilities are on the road and to the public. There is so
much you must know before you take a vehicle on the road.
What?You want to learn driving from my brother?

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