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The Professional Driving Course for Motorcoach/Truck Operators

The Professional Driver Series has been developed by Daecher Consulting Group and SPS Enterprises.  The programs are available in DVD and Interactive CD-ROM format, and have been developed with the operator in mind.  Critical areas for learning are included in each program.  The series of training programs provide solid foundation for preparing a person to operate the motorcoach of today, or to refresh experienced drivers in the basic critical information necessary to continue to drive efficiently and safely.

The driver training programs, available individually or as a complete set, are described below:

Module I: The Professional Driver
Video Running Time - 13:49 minutes

This module acquaints new drivers with the definition of ‘professional driver’ and the higher level of responsibility which comes with driving a motorcoach; the concept of preventability rather than “fault” or “changeability”’ the basic elements of defensive driving’ and the concept of the driver as a manager of space, vehicle control, and people.

The objective of this training module is to prepare the motorcoach driver for his/her role as a motorcoach operator.  It is intended to impress upon them the importance of their actions for the safety of passengers, the general public, and the success of the company as a whole.  The concepts that will be discussed will help them understand differences that they may have learned or acquired while driving a passenger vehicle.  In other words, the module will help them understand that they are more than mere “drivers” when they operate a motorcoach.

Module II: Trip Inspection
Video Running Time - 20:52 Minutes

This training module discusses the importance of pre-trip and post-trip inspections and why they must be properly performed for proper defensive driving.  Air brakes, anti-lock braking systems, steerable tag axles, engine retarders, and other such technological features are detailed and their impacts on safe driving are discussed.  Tires, rims, and lights are discussed in addition to proper use of brakes, proper hand positioning on the steering wheel, and proper turning techniques.

The objective of this training module is to ensure that drivers fully understand features of the motorcoach that are critical to its safe operation.  It will help them understand how to operate and use these features safely.  Such knowledge and its proper application can prevent accidents that result from loss of control and/or skidding.  Equally as important, the objective is to give the drivers a constancy in vehicle control and handling.

Module III: Space Management
Video Running Time approximately 12-15 minutes

This training module includes detailed discussions concerning establishing and maintaining safe and proper following distance.  This discussion includes how to define proper following distance based upon vehicle size and vehicle speed.  Adverse weather conditions, both surface and visibility related, and their influence upon following distance is also discussed in detail along with techniques in managing space on each side of the motorcoach.  The importance of establishing cushions for possible emergency maneuvers is stressed.  This is also discussed with regards to changing lanes and moving to and from highway ramps.  Establishing proper space between stopped vehicles is also discussed, as well as responding to other vehicles following too closely.

The objective of this training module is to minimize the most frequent, severe type of accident - the rear-end accident.  It is also intended to assist the driver in developing the most fundamental safe driving behavior and learning to manage that behavior based upon changing conditions to avoid hard braking, abrupt turns, etc., which lead to passenger discomfort and vehicle component wear.

Module IV: Passing and Lane Changing
Video Running Time - 14:32 minutes

The importance of proper lookout and space management is again stressed with respect to moving the motorcoach from one lane to another.  Special attention is paid to the dangers of passing on two-lane roadways.  The proper use of turn signals to communicate lane changing is also stressed.  Special considerations for merging is discussed.

The objective of this training module is to prepare for lane transitions, especially in heavy and high speed traffic.  The objective is to reduce sideswipe accidents and unnecessary lane changing.

Module V: Backing Basics
Video Running Time - 10:35 minutes

Proper backing techniques are discussed at length.  Attempting to avoid backing if at all possible is stressed.  Communicating with horns, back-up warning devices, flashers, etc., are emphasized.  The drivers responsibility in making sure that the area behind his/her coach is clear before backing is stressed throughout the video.  Using spotters for actually measuring distances for backing is also discussed.  

The objective of this training module is to minimize the most frequent type of accident which is backing.

Module VI: Intersections
Video Running Time - 16:56 minutes

This training module concentrates on the most problematic locations within the urban driving environment.  It discusses looking ahead and responding to traffic signals; how to make proper left and right turns; how to safely position the motorcoach for stops and for boarding/unloading passengers; special awareness of pedestrians, including unloading passengers and how they may enter into certain blind spots within the driver’s view; look out and awareness of other drivers and possible behaviors that can cause problems at intersections.  The video also discusses general urban driving hazards as part of the intersection presentation.

The objective of this training module is to assist the motorcoach operator in being alert to hazards and driving defensively at intersections to reduce incidence concerning minor damage to parked vehicles, signs, and other such objects, and more importantly, to reduce serious incidents involving impacts with pedestrians. 

Module VII: Pedestrian Awareness
Video Running Time - 23:43 minutes

This training module concentrates specifically on pedestrian issues and problems as they related to the motorcoach operator.  Behavioral issues associated with pedestrians such as jay-walking, crossing streets at mid-block, and walking against red lights are discussed.  Understanding that pedestrians can be “lost” in blind spots around the motorcoach and the imprtance of a diligent lookout to avoid this phenomenon are also discussed.  The concept of making sure that when passengers are unloaded they should be accounted for before moving is also discussed.  Behavioral aspects of pedestrians (children at play, elderly persons, crossing the street, etc.) are highlighted.  The video not only concentrates on urban settings, but also on rural or open highway settings where pedestrians may be encountered.

The objective of this training module is to minimize and hopefully eliminate pedestrian accidents in all settings and conditions encountered by coach operators. 

Module VIII: Special Needs Passengers
Video Running Time approximately 10-12 minutes

This module will present training techniques in assisting special-needs passengers.  The proper use of lifts and tie-downs will be thoroughly detailed.  Sensitivity to other special-needs passengers (sight challanged, mentally challanged, etc.) will also be discussed.  Unique passenger management considerations and techniques will be included as part of this presentation.

The objective of this training module is to impress upon motorcoach operators the importance for sensitivity and special handling of special-needs passengers in compliance with ADA requirements.  It is also intended to assist a driver in minimizing or avoiding situations which can result in injury to these passengers.

Instructor guides and student workbooks for training videos are also available to provide you with the tools necessary to provide quality and effective training to your drivers.  Computer-based, score-keeping programs automatically track, record and report test scores for drivers participating in the interactive CD-ROM training modules.

Cost of training materials

DVD Series

* Individual DVD’s: $150.00 + Shipping and Handling
* Complete set of 7 DVD’s: $1,000.00 + Shipping and Handling
* Student Workbooks: $15.00 each + Shipping and Handling
* Instructor guides are provided as part of the price for the videos

Interactive CD-ROM Series

* Individual CD-ROM: $150.00 + Shipping and Handling
* Complete set of 7 CD’s: $1,000.00 + Shipping and Handling
* Student Workbooks: $15.00 each + Shipping and Handling (minimum order of 10)

Contact the Daecher Consulting Group for more information and purchasing.

Office: Camp Hill, Pa

Hours: Monday thru Friday - 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Phone: (717) 975-9190

Copyright 2016.  All rights reserved.  The Daecher Consulting Group, Inc.