PRACTICAL DRIVING TEST
Once you have passed your theory test, you are able to start thinking about booking your practical driving test. The driving test consists of an eyesight test, safety questions and your ability to drive safely. The practical driving test lasts approximately 40 minutes.
Once you are called out for your driving test, the driving examiner will check that you are able to read a number plate from a distance of 20m (or 20.5m) for older vehicles. If you are unable to read the number plate correctly, then you will be unable to carry on with the driving test. This will count as a fail.
VEHICLE SAFETY QUESTIONS
During the practical driving test, you will be asked two vehicle safety questions, otherwise known as ‘show me, tell me’ questions. There are 7 ‘show me’ questions and 14 ‘tell me’ questions.
– ‘SHOW ME’ QUESTION – This will be asked by the driving examiner whilst you are driving. You will show how you would carry out a certain safety task.
– ‘TELL ME’ QUESTION – This will be asked by the driving examiner before you start driving. You will explain how you would carry out a certain safety task.
If you are unable to answer one or both of these questions, this will count as a minor fault.
GENERAL DRIVING ABILITY
You will be tested on your general driving ability in various road and traffic conditions, as well as a reversing manoeuvre. The reversing manoeuvres are as follows:
– BAY PARK – You will either have to drive into and reverse out of a bay, or reverse into and drive out of a parking bay safely.
– PARALLEL PARK – You will have to reverse your car into a space at the side of the road.
– RIGHT HAND SIDE REVERSE – You will have to pull up on the right hand side of the road, reverse back two car lengths and then re-join the traffic as usual.
– You may also be asked to perform an emergency stop manoeuvre.
If you are unable to perform the manoeuvre safely, this will count as a major fault. If you make a slight error, for instance touching the kerb slightly, it will count as a minor fault.
In the independent driving part of the practical test, you will have to drive independently for around 20 minutes. You will either follow traffic signs, a series of directions from a sat-nav or a combination of both. You will be informed of what you will be doing from the driving examiner. If you have to follow the sat-nav, the examiner will set this up for you with a pre-set route. Alternatively, you will be asked to follow any sort of directions or traffic signs of a specific location. If it so happens that you do not remember every direction or go the wrong way, you will not necessarily be failed. As long as you are driving safely and following the rules of the road, you should pass your independent part of the driving test.
You should drive as you have been taught by your Fast Pass driving instructor. If you make a mistake on your practical driving test, keep calm and carry on. It may have been a less serious driving fault and may not affect your final result. You are able to make 15 minor driving faults and still pass the practical test. If you commit a serious or dangerous fault, you will fail your driving test. If it so happens that you make a dangerous fault and the driving examiner feels that it will be dangerous for the test to go on, your test will be stopped.
PASS OR FAIL?
Once your practical test is over, the driving examiner will inform you if you have passed or failed. If you pass, you will be issued with a certificate on the day, and a pink driving licence through the post, within 4 weeks. If you fail your driving test, the driving examiner will provide some feedback on the performance of your test. You will also receive your driving report form which shows where you went wrong. It is possible to rebook your test and take another practical driving test 10 working days later.