Now that we are back to training in Wales its almost back to normal. Well, kind of. There are some changes we as trainers have had to make to ensure we can do this as safely as possible.
With that in mind its important for me to let you know what this entails. Below is all the information you need to understand what you can expect from me and what I will expect from you. There will be an email sent out to all students with specific information I need from them so please keep an eye out for that and reply as soon as you can.
Can you return to training? Do you even want to right now?
There are a number of criteria that you need to think about before returning to training. These are really important for your health and safety and that of other students, their families and mine.
Are you or anyone in your household or 'extended household' in receipt of and still adhering to a shielding letter?
Have you or anyone in your household or 'extended household' had any symptoms of Covid-19 in the past 14 days?
Next thing to think about is that on the driving test itself you will likely be required to wear a face covering of some sort unless you can prove to them that you cannot wear one due to health reasons. If you are not comfortable wearing one then trianing may resume but you may have to wait to take your test. (This is the situation in England and although nothing has been confirmed yet it is likely the DVSA will take a similar stance here in Wales)
Do you want to return to training at this time? Do you feel safe enough right now? Are you happy to take the risk? However small that risk may be.
Below is what I will be doing to personally minimise the risk to you and myself.
Windows in the car will be open as much as possible. This may cause the temperature in the car to be much lower than normal so please think about what you wear.
The car will have a thorough clean before and after each lesson. Because of this the number of lessons will be limited per day to allow time. That cleaning routine will cover the following;
Wiping down door handles, steering wheel, indicator stalks, controls, door panels and handles inside, seat belts, gear stick, hand brake handle and the seats themselves.
I will inform everyone and cancel lessons if me, anyone in my family or 'extended household' shows any signs or symptoms of Covid-19.
I will not be sharing training aids, pens or touchscreen devices. I will also not be carrying out demo drives unless the above thorough clean is done both before and after the demo drive.
Below is what I expect of yourself to personally minimise the risk to you and myself.
Dress with the knowledge that the windows in the car will be open as much as possible taking into consideration the rain.
You will thoroughly wash your hands JUST AS YOU LEAVE the house prior to each lesson.
Inform me and cancel any lessons if you, anyone in your house or 'extended household' shows any signs or symptoms of Covid-19 within the 14 days prior to your lesson.
Upon returing home after your lesson it is advised that you wash your hands immediately and thorughly and change your outer clothes, putting them immediately into the wash.
If wearing gloves or a facemask these must be put on JUST before getting in the car and MUST be changed or washed between lessons.
When we do lessons they will be structured in a way to allow time to clean and arrive for the next lesson safely. With this in mind I will be limiting myself to 3 lessons per day and these will be 2 hours long. For the time being there will be static start and finish times and I will only be offering 2 hour lesson lengths. Other lesson lengths and start times will be integrated over time as the precautions necessary reduce. The days and start times during this first phase of training are;
Monday to Saturday.
1st lesson beginning at 0900 and finishing 1100.
2nd lesson beginning at 1130 and finishing at 1330.
3rd lesson begining at 1430 and finishing at 1630.
Payments for training will not be limited to online payments but these would be preferred if possible. Please remember that online payments must be cleared BEFORE training starts. Cash payments should be made in a clear sealed bag only with your name included inside.
Refunds for lessons cancelled due to Covid-19 symptoms do not follow the normal cancellation policy. Regardless of the timing of a cancelltion due to symptoms of Covid-19 a full refund will be issued. Future lessons will then be cancelled for a minimum of 2 weeks for that trainee.
Full details of the NHS Track & Trace system can be found here should you be suffering symptoms and/or provide a postive test result.
With these simple guidelines in place we can do our best to get back to training while minimising the risk to all involved. I will be doing my part, I couldn't live with myself if you or one of your loved ones were to suffer from Covid-19 due to me not performing a cleaning routine correctly. I am sure you would feel the same should any of my family suffer simply because you didn't wash your hands before getting in the car. We can all take simple steps to reduce the risk and get back to training.
Take care of yourselves, look after each other and those around you. Keep safe and keep well.