One driving test mistake

All it takes is one serious or dangerous test mistake for you not to pass the driving test, and the dsa examiner will ignore how good your driving has been up to that point.

It is for this reason that the current UK driving test only has a national average pass rate of only 40% for the over 1.5 million practical car assessments that are given each year.

You as a learner driver should therefore not get into the habit of classifying some of your driving mistakes during lessons as only minor errors, as all it takes is some other road user to be affected by your actions and it becomes a serious mistake that fails you on the driving test.

While the dsa driving examiner is not expecting a perfect no error drive, you should go to the assessment with the mindset and intention of making no mistakes, and this is only possible if you've had enough practice and are confident with your manoeuvres.

Driving test mistakes can cause you to fail, so take professional advice, practise and know what is required for the various scenarios that you might encounter out on the road, including being able to drive up to 70mph on a dual carriageway, deal with junctions and roundabouts, recognise road signs/markings and obey traffic lights (no rush to beat a red light for example).

The higher the number of times you have done a particular test maneuver, dealt with a junction or roundabout, driven on a dual carriageway, the better and confident you will be, and this means the less likely you will make a mistake, with your chances of passing the driving test increased, and thus achieving your goal of getting a full british licence in the post.

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Hoping to pass the driving test

You just can't hope to pass the DSA practical driving test, you need to work hard, practice all the driving skills highlighted in the driving test requirements record, and be confident that you've done everything in your power to prepare. It is particularly important if you've already had an attempt at the test, that you don't stop taking driving lessons and just turn up at the test centre having only taken a hour tuition session on the day and think that you will still be able to drive at the test standard.

As a DSA approved assessor, I regularly see people who've failed a test, book another appointment with an examiner and only call me a week before the date asking for a 1 hour session a day or two before the test. In most cases their driving has gone rusty, and they make many driving mistakes, some of which they didn't even commit on their previous test, all because they haven't driven in the 8 week period since their last DSA practical car assessment! With only a short 1 hour driving lesson, it is not possible to make up for that gap, so the result is they go for the test and fail!

The video below shows an example of how people fail the driving test for not knowing how to deal with cars driving too close behind them.

You can't rely on lady luck to pass the test, 40 minutes is a long time and since you can be taken anywhere except the motorway, you can not fluke a pass as there are too many things that could go wrong if you have not practiced enough! Take the time to have enough driving lessons, and take a driving instructor's advice on what you need to work on, then you might have a higher chance of being successful and get that full british driving licence.

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Driving test in private car

For you to be able to pass the driving test with a private car, your vehicle must pass the basic visual inspection conducted by the DSA driving examiner.

Every week I either see or hear of driving test candidates who come in their private car being denied the chance of taking the practicar car assessment because their vehicle does not have road worthy tyres, a large crack on the windscreen or the headlights are not working properly.

All the requirements that your private car on the driving test has to fulfil are listed on the DSA driving test appointment letter sent out to all candidates, so check your car at least a day before the test, and get any defects fixed before going to the test centre.

You will lose your fee, if the test can not go ahead due to a problem with your car, and at £62 (April 2009), that could be a very expensive mistake!

If at all possible I would always recommend you use a driving school car, though you can expect the instructor would like to make sure you will not crash his vehicle by asking you have a couple of lessons before your test date, but you will not have any cancellations of test by the DSA examiner if you hire a driving test car using this method.

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