25th May 2018 | General News

The 3 Most Common Driving Test Failing Points

The 3 Most Common Driving Test Failing Points



Each all the faults marked on examiners sheets during driving tests are collated together to form a list showing the most commonly marked faults, year after the top 3 are always the same! So if your preparing for your Driving Test it has to make sense to ensure you are paying extra attention to these the situations to increase your chances of passing dosent it?

Ok here they are…

  1. Junction Observations

Number one year after year after year!!

This has to be your major area of attention not only when preparing for the driving test but after and for all the years to come, it is the most common cause of accidents.

After 20 + years of teaching driving I consider the fault is caused mainly through pupils not being 100% comfortable with the control of the car and correspondingly making decisions to emerge from junctions when they are not in a position to see the whole of the main road.

For example over braking causing the car to stop short of the end of the road and then deciding to emerge from a position they cannot make effective observations from.

Another example is trying edge forward to gain a better view with ineffective clutch control, causing the pupil to bring the clutch too high and as they often say “Shall I just go?”

Cure these problems by ensuring in early driving lessons you gain total control on your car, so much so that you can move it one inch at a time this will certainly help you to be comfortable enough to take effective observations each time you need to.


  1. Use Of Mirrors Before Changing Direction

This fault usually seems to occur on large multilane roundabouts, often when a pupil is attempting a right turn taking an exit they are unfamiliar with.

The unfamiliarity causes the pupil to be more concerned about where they are going and which lane to be in that they forget to check that it is clear behind and to the sides of their vehicle before swapping to the lane they need to be in, resulting in another road user being affected or the examiner judging another road user could have been affected by the candidate taking ineffective observations.

To minimise the risk of this occurring on the driving test plenty of multilane practise is needed and again as mentioned in the junction observation section complete car control is needed to ensure enough confidence to check mirrors easily whilst still maintaining car control.

Another point worth mentioning is the time spent waiting at traffic lights within these multi lane situations should be used to

  1. Plan the route needed to reach the required destination
  2. Assess the traffic behind and to the side to anticipate the next situations likely to develop

I tend to see many pupils sitting at traffic lights in these big multilane situations totally unaware of where they have to go next and what is happening all round them, it is vital this stationary time is utilised to ensure risks are kept to a minimum when the traffic starts to move again.

If traffic doesn’t come to halt in these situations then frequent mirror checks will ensure all developing situations are monitored

This extra planning with good car control skills  gives the confidence to deal with any multilane situation.



  1. Lack of observations during parking exercises

This fault seems to occur due to pupils concentrating on specific guidelines taught to them to be able to complete the exercise correctly.

They often end up staring into the  exterior mirrors resulting no attention being paid to what is happening all around the vehicle, a car passes without being noticed or a pedestrian crosses behind the car without the pupil stopping and the examiner marks a serious fault.

Stopping the vehicle frequently to assess what is happening all around can cut this risk right down, just momentary stops at appropriate times will ensure complete monitoring of all vehicles and pedestrians is completed.

A good tip here is to lower the drivers window slightly to enable any approaching vehicles to be heard as they approach, also using guidelines that do not require too much side mirror use will enable more effective all round observations to be carried out.


These are just 3 of the most common driving test errors but they are always the top 3 so getting these areas fine tuned and confident will go a good way to helping towards a driving test Pass!!

We hope they help you!

Good luck from the Driving Advisor team.



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