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What is the most common thing to fail for on a driving test?

December 14th 2019 in FAQs

What is the most common thing to fail for on a driving test?

Below is the top ten up to date list of the most common things that people fail for on a driving test published by the DVSA in July 2019. So this is based on the current version of the driving test too. Along with the top 10 reasons people fail I have also added some examples and handy hints and tips to avoid the fail at all.

  1. Junctions – observation. – This normally means you have pulled out of a junction and the gap was not big enough to go. Be patient and if the gap isn’t big enough then wait for a bigger one.
  2. Mirrors – change direction. – This normally means that you have not properly checked your right or left mirrors before changing lane or before turning. Plan well ahead, don’t leave it all too late and you will have more time to check.
  3. Control – steering. – This can be a multitude of things but most commonly drifting too much to the right or left in your lane. Often concentration can be the issue here. Make sure you are well and not too tired. Eat and drink properly before driving and your brain will be fresh and able to concentrate better.
  4. Junctions – turning right. – Similar to number 1, often not having a big enough space to turn with a car oncoming. But it could have also been cutting a corner, so turning into a road too early. Take your time, don’t feel rushed or pressured by a following car. They will have to wait a lot longer if you crash!!
  5. Move off – safely. – Like number 1 again, often trying to pull away when a car coming towards you from behind is too close. Remember you are stopped and they have a steady speed. It is often best to not go if anyone is coming to avoid this. Could also be not checking before going, eg Blind Spot.
  6. Response to signs – traffic lights. – Most commonly misjudging whether to go or stop when lights are changing to red. If you are too close to the stop line as it goes amber then carry on or you may get hit from behind. But if you can stop safely then do so. How fast are you going? How far away is the stop line? How close is the car behind?
  7. Move off – control. – Stalling normally is this one, but not just once, too many times and often not realising why!! Quite often nerves can be a factor, but sometimes just forgetting to put the car back into 1st gear and then trying to pull away in the wrong gear is an issue. Check, am I in 1st??
  8. Positioning – normal driving. – There are many, many possibilities here, but often being in the wrong lane to go right or left and also taking two lanes can be a common problem. So look ahead at the markings early and plan well ahead. Don’t leave it too late to position into the lane you need.
  9. Response to signs – road markings. – This could be one of many many things. In our area not spotting a give way sign soon enough on a fast road catches people out in one location. So look further ahead. Also quite common is not Stopping at a STOP sign too. This is very common at one particular location. But there are so many potential fails here. Read the road well ahead, don’t just look at the car in front. I teach “Look up and out”
  10. Reverse park – control – Mainly just practice this one. But also common for people to rush if someone else arrives. were there before they were in sight then you have done nothing wrong. Take a deep breath and carry on at your pace and do what you were taught. Don’t panic!

These driving test faults do actually reflect the factors that cause accidents after you have passed too. Gov.UK website states that

39% of all accidents in Great Britain in 2017 were a result of a driver failing to look properly. In 2017, drivers failing to look properly contributed to 35,993 accidents. It was the most common contributory factor in accidents.

Modern life is busy but try to take time. Don’t leave too late to make your journey a rush and if you are running late phone ahead to let the person/people know to take the pressure off you. You are always better to arrive safely late than not at all!!!

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