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Eco driving


(Information courtesy of the Driving Standards Agency and


Motor vehicles on the road today contribute heavily to climate change because of carbon dioxide (CO2) COand other harmful greenhouse gases are produced by running your vehicle's engine and simply driving 


Yet reducing these emissions is a lot easier than you think when you learn to drive.  By following these eco-safe driving guidelines and practising them on your Driving Lessons in Folkestone or Driving Lessons in Hythe, not only will you become a safer driver, you could reduce the amount of CO2 that your vehicle gives out


Eco-Safe driving is a recognised and proven style of driving that contributes to road safety and reduces fuel consumption and emissions If you make some simple changes you could reduce your fuel bills and the wear and tear on your vehicle In addition, you will be taking a positive step to reducing your carbon footprint on the planet


Little green car with old driver                   The simple steps below will save you money and help the environment

Control: Driving your vehicle                     

Always try to use the vehicle controls as smoothly as possible.  This not only reduces the wear and tear on your car, saving you maintenance costs, but will help to reduce harmful emissions.


Start / Move away:  Try to avoid excessive revving when starting your engine and moving away.


Accelerator:  Use the accelerator smoothly and progressively.  When appropriate, take your foot off the accelerator and and allow the momentum of the vehicle to take you forward.  Avoid pumping the gas as this uses more fuel.


Gears:  It's not always necessary to change up or down through each gear.  Try skipping gears (block changing).  And as soon as conditions allow, select the highest possible gear without making the engine struggle.  Speeds that are too slow (travelling at 15 mph) contribute to more emissions and pollution of the environment.


Appropriate use of speed:  Ensure that your speed is appropriate to the road, traffic and weather conditions. Consider how inappropriate speed can seriously affect fuel consumption and emissions.

Planning:  You can reduce the speed of your vehicle and harmful emissions by anticipating traffic conditions and acting on what you see in good time.  This better this is better than reacting late to hazards ahead.  Try to plan ahead sufficiently to keep your vehicle moving,


Hazard awareness / planning and anticipation:  Identify hazards early and allow adequate time to react.  This will result in braking and acceleration that is smooth and progressive.  Maintain space around your vehicle (front, ahead and behind) and drive calmly.  If you are being followed too closely, simply increase your space ahead of your own vehicle.

If you are becoming nervous, pull in and allow the other vehicle pass.


Engine braking:  Use engine braking when possible, and without affecting other traffic.  With your foot fully off the accelerator the engine needs little, if any, fuel and can result in more fuel savings.


Stopping the engine:  When you are stuck in traffic queues or waiting for someone for more than a few minutes, the engine is idling so you are wasting fuel and adding to CO2 emissions.  If you are at a standstill switch off!

Key points

Tyres:  Check regularly and keep at recommended pressure.


Weight:  Don't carry unnecessary weight.  Remove roof-rack/luggage boxes when not needed.


Speed: Don't exceed speed limits, accelerate gently.  If fitted, use Cruise Control where appropriate.


Route Planning:  Try to travel during off-peak times, and plan your route to avoid congestion.


Maintenance:  Ensure you don’t exceed your regular maintenance periods.


Air conditioning:  Use only when you need to avoid discomfort.  Air conditioning increase fuel use.


Engine:  Turn off your engine if you are likely to have a prolonged wait.


Other forms of transport:  Avoid unnecessary short journeys.  Try using public transport, walk or cycle.


Car sharing:  Consider sharing a vehicle to save fuel and make new friends.

Environmental benefits Green world in cupped handsHelping to keep our planet green


Eco-driving can:                                
1.  Reduce the use and demand for non-renewable natural resources (fuel economy). 
2.  Reduce harmful greenhouse gases and help to preserve our planet.                                              

3.  Help to improve our overall air quality.
4.  Reduce ambient noise levels on our roads.
5.  Reduce the need to change
 tyres and brake pads so often, which will also benefit the environment

     and non-renewable resources.                                                                                         

6.  Make our roads safer.


The benefits to you:
1.  Your contribution to preserving the environment.
2.  Reduction of your running costs; less fuel / lower spending on vehicle maintenance.
3.  Reduction of stress.
4.  Reduction of vehicle wear and tear.
5.  A positive contribution to road safety.                                                                                                              

6.  Becoming a better driver: less stressed and more courteous and considerate of others.


Further information can be found in DSA publications or via


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