So you’ve been learning to drive for a while now, and your instructor took it upon themselves to set a date for the practical driving test (which is now looming). All sorts of emotions are probably running through you right now, not least that you think you’re instructor has shown too much faith in you!
Doubt is something that creeps into everyone’s minds when they’re about to take the practical driving test and the easiest person to blame is your instructor. The fact is the professional that has been with you through “thick and thin” whilst you’ve been learning would not have put you forward if they didn’t think you were ready.
So, that’s doubt number one out of the way! The next thing to deal with is the parts of the test that worry you most, and yes it is true that the reasons for failing (listed below) are the most common. However, you don’t have to be one of those statistics so in the hope that some of what you’re going to read will sink in, let’s see if we can go some way to helping you get that pass first time!
Improper Junction Use
We list this as the number one reason for failing because it’s something ALL driving examiners look for. The reason for this is improper use of a junction can lead to a very nasty accident so it’s important you remember what you need to do.
Remember that if your vehicle goes over the stop line, it could mean an automatic fail. When you see the junction approaching, take your time (your examiner will not thank you for doing the emergency stop before you’ve been asked to). Make sure you check your mirrors as you slow down and above all, take your time!
Proper Use of Steering
It probably shouldn’t be said at this stage, but there is a very small percentage of qualified drivers who handle the steering wheel the way they were originally taught to, but that’s a story for another day. Right now, you need to remember that crossing your hands over each other is a BIG no-no. Just make sure you keep both hands on the wheel (unless you’re changing gear) and thread the wheel through them just like you have been over the past few weeks.
NO! I hear you all cry! Well, yes you will have to reverse park at some stage, and it is one of the trickiest maneuvers you will learn. However, you will not be penalized for taking your time. As long as you can show good clutch control, an ability to use your mirrors properly and proper observation of other vehicles or pedestrians, you’ll be fine.
If it helps, on the day do your best to imagine you’re just going for a lesson only this time it’s up to you to make sure there are no mistakes. It’s hard to do, but try and enjoy yourself. After all, driving is supposed to be fun if you go about it safely.