Fortunately, driving examiners will have a detailed list of errors that they can share with the student after the test has been completed. Driving examiners are not trying to trip up the student by tricking them into performing an illegal act that will disqualify them. For those who have not yet taken their driving test, these suggestions can help students to avoid having to go through with the driving test again.
Observation may seem to be a small part of a driving test, but it is actually a very significant part of safe driving. When the driving instructor sits down beside the student, they will be observing them for the duration of the test and making sure that they watch the road ahead. This means that whenever they get to an intersection, crossroads or even a set of red traffic lights, that they are observant at all times and act accordingly. Making a correct turn at a stop sign means coming to a complete stop and then looking left and right for traffic and halting if another vehicle is coming. Students must also alert other motorists of their intentions, by using their indicators. Failure to exercise proper observation and due care will mean an instant fail, because it does not prove to the driving instructor that they are sitting beside a safe, cautious driver.
It is very important to keep within the legal speed limit at all times during the driving test. Failure to do so will mean instant disqualification. Students should keep an eye on the speed that they are doing and adjust it to the road conditions. That means if the posted speed limit is 35mph but the road ahead is icy, a lower speed limit would be more appropriate. This shows the examiner that the student is alert to the need to slow down, even though the posted speed limit is higher.
Operating the Car
By the time a student books their driving test, they should know how to operate the car. However, if they cannot prove to the examiner that they are in full control of the car and know how to drive it correctly, then they will not pass their driving test. For example, if taking the test in a manual transmission car, the student must know how to change gears according to the speed that they are traveling, and use the clutch. Drivers must also know how to find the “biting point” when using clutch control and try to prevent the car from stalling. Stalling the car once will not be viewed as a reason for failure, but as a minor fault, as long as the student recovers from it and proceeds well during the rest of the examination.
Part of the driving test will involve manoeuvres such as performing an emergency stop, doing a three point turn and parallel parking. A student needs to know how to carry out these requests when asked to do so and show the examiner that they can competently manoeuvre the car. They must also watch the road carefully during these procedures and be mindful of the appearance of small children and other vulnerable road users. The driving examiner will expect the student to stop or slow down if there is any obstruction and continue with the manoeuvre only when it is safe to do so.
A student who does not give way to oncoming traffic and almost causes a collision will fail their driving test. It is as simple as that. As far as the examiner is concerned the student did not obey an important traffic law and is therefore a danger on the road.
Driving examiners are not looking for perfection when examining student drivers. They simply want to see the car driven responsibly and skilfully. A student will be nervous when taking their driving test, which is quite natural, but they need to show that they can overcome their nerves and prove that they have earned the right to drive alongside more experienced drivers on the road. By doing this, they will be more likely to pass, rather than fail their driving test.