Safe & Considerate Driving (SCD) - FAQs
Who runs the SCD?
Each police authority will appoint a course provider in their area to deliver these courses. This association is established to ensure the quality and consistency of delivery of courses throughout the UK. In Essex the course provider is Essex County Council working in partnership with Essex Police as part of SERP.
Will I be eligible to be offered a SCD course?
Courses will only be available to drivers, via an offer from a police authority, who have committed certain road traffic offences such as careless driving or driving without due care and attention when involved in a road collision.
The purpose of the SCD is to give eligible offenders the opportunity to attend a course as an alternative to a fine and penalty points to be endorsed on their licence. In some situations it could prevent a summons to attend court being issued. Having attended a course, you will not be eligible to attend a second course within three years of your offence.
If I attend a course, will I still get penalty points on my licence?
No. Once you have successfully completed the course, no further action will be taken and you will have no record of this on your licence.
How soon do I need to reply to the offer letter from the police?
You should respond to any offer letter from the police as soon as you can in order to be able to book a course, as availability varies. The time limit to take the course varies between police authorities and you should contact then direct for this information.
Do I have to pay for the course and what is involved?
Yes. The cost of the course can vary between service providers. In Essex the cost is £175 and payment is required at the time of booking. If you have financial difficulties with making this payment at the time of booking, please contact the Essex County Council Booking Office on 01277 636675 (Mon-Fri, 7.30am – 4.00pm) who may be able to arrange a pre-payment scheme. All courses need to be paid for a minimum of seven days before attendance. You can also e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are not taking a course in Essex then you will need to contact the course provider for the area in which you wish to take your course for further details on their cost and venues.
What is the course about?
The course is a mixture of theory and on road practical driving coaching. It aims to allow drivers to look at their driving and introduces practical solutions to help them to avoid being involved in future collisions. It includes group discussions in the theory section and focussed individual coaching during the practical session.
The practical driving section will be two drivers to one trainer and the coaching will take place in a modern dual controlled vehicle. Both manual and automatic vehicles are used.
If you drive a specially adapted vehicle please contact the booking office on 01277 636675 before booking a course.
There is no test to be taken on the course but drivers must fully participate to complete the course.
How long is the course?
The courses are of eight hours’ duration and are delivered by qualified and licensed NDORS trainers at venues throughout Essex.
When are the courses?
The courses are available on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays, 8.45am – 4.45pm. A buffet lunch is provided. If you have a special dietary requirement please inform the booking office at the time of booking or complete the special requirement section online.
What happens if I am late, or unable to attend on the day?
If you are late you will not be admitted to the course. It is your responsibility, having accepted the offer, to ensure that you arrive in plenty of time.
You should contact your course provider if you are not admitted to the course, to arrange another course date. For Essex courses contact the booking office on 01277 636675.
If you are unable to attend the course date then you should contact the course provider as soon as possible to arrange an alternative date. Rebooking fees may be incurred. Full details can be seen in the terms and conditions of your course provider.
If you fail to re arrange a course that you have been late for, or have been unable to attend, then your details will be returned to the referring police authority for their further action.
Do I need to bring my driving licence to the course?
When you attend the course you must bring your photo card driving licence as proof of your authority to drive. If you have an old style paper driving licence then you should bring your passport with you as proof of identity.
If you do not bring your driving licence with you, you will not be able to complete the course
If you have difficulty with photographic identification please contact the booking office on 01277 636675 before the day of your course, as you will not be allowed to attend the course if you cannot produce photographic identification.
You must, however, ensure you read the terms and conditions of your chosen course provider in the event that you are required to produce your driving licence.
Do I have to take a written test?
No, but you will be expected to participate in order to successfully complete the course.
Will there be an eyesight check?
Before the trainer allows you to participate in the practical driving section you will need to pass the standard driving test eyesight check. This means that you will need to be able to read (with glasses or contact lenses if you wear them) either an old style vehicle number plate from 20.5 m (67ft), or a vehicle number plate made after 1 September 2001 from 20m. If you wear glasses or contact lenses to drive please bring them with you.
If you fail the eyesight check you will not be able to complete the course and these facts will be reported to the referring police authority. If you fail the eyesight check you should not drive again until you can pass the eyesight test as you will be committing a driving licence offence and endangering yourself and other road users.
Can I attend if I am taking medication prescribed by my doctor/healthcare professional?
If you taking medicines prescribed by your doctor/healthcare professional then you should seek their advice on how it may affect your ability to drive.
The advice below is taken from this website: www.gov.uk
It’s illegal in England and Wales to drive with legal drugs in your body if it impairs your driving.
It’s an offence to drive if you have over the specified limits of certain drugs in your blood and you haven’t been prescribed them.
Talk to your doctor about whether you should drive if you’ve been prescribed any of the following drugs:
- amphetamine, eg dexamphetamine or selegiline
- morphine or opiate and opioid-based drugs, eg codeine, tramadol or fentanyl
You can drive after taking these drugs if:
- you’ve been prescribed them and followed advice on how to take them by a healthcare professional
- they aren’t causing you to be unfit to drive even if you’re above the specified limits
What if I have specific needs?
Prior to attending a course you will be asked by the course provider to indicate if you have any specific needs that will have to be taken into consideration in order to ensure you can fully participate in the course. Every effort will be made to facilitate these needs.
How many people will be on the course?
There will be one other delegate and the trainer in the provided training vehicle.
How do I book a course?
The offer letter from the referring will give you details of how to book a course.