The current national pass rate is only 43% (50.4% at Bletchley)

For first time candidates, it is even lower.

The top ten reasons why people fail are;

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1. Observation at junctions                         Ineffective observation and judgement

2. Reverse parking                                       Ineffective observation or a lack of accuracy

3. Use of mirrors                                           Not checking or not acting on the information

4. Reversing around a corner                    Ineffective observation or a lack of accuracy

5. Incorrect use of signals                          Not cancelling or giving misleading signals

6. Moving away safely                                  Ineffective observation

7. Incorrect positioning on the road          At roundabouts or on bends

8. Lack of steering control                          Steering too early or leaving it too late

9. Incorrect positioning to turn right          At junctions and in one-way streets

10. Inappropriate speed                             Travelling too slowly or being hesitant

You can make up to 15 driver errors (minor faults) but one serious fault and it is game over.

What is the difference between a serious and a driver fault?  It is usually the severity, the timing and the situation or circumstances.

In the moving off part, when you are pulling away from the kerb, failing to check over your right shoulder that it is safe to move off. If there is nothing coming and you only check your mirror then that is likely to be a minor, but if something is approaching then it becomes a serious.

Examiner says … ‘Pull over and stop at a convenient spot, please’.

You check mirror. OK. Car behind you. Signal and pull over. All OK.

Fail to  check mirror, signal, pull over and stop.  Nobody got hurt but that is now a serious. It could have turned into a real problem.

It is usually the severity of the fault that makes the difference.

Make the same silly mistake more than four times then it is marked as a ‘habitual fault’ and will need some remedial work.

Remember the mantra –  Mirror, Signal, Manoeuvre.

Every manoeuvre breaks down into Position, Speed and Look

You are likely to have got one of these wrong if you failed a driving test.

1. Observations are often missed because the approach speed is too fast. You are flustered about where your exit is, you are possibly then in the wrong lane.

2. Not looking through the glass – windows – enough. Too much reliance on the mirrors. Trying to rush it and ending up wrongly positioned.

3. Put simply not observing or ignoring the problem. I say to pupils there are two occasions when you have to check mirrors. When you can see a car in front of you . . . and when you cannot see any cars. All the time!

4. Same problem as N0.2.

5. Only this is not one of the above three. You are just confusing other people.

6. If you do not check your blind spots there is a good chance of moving off straight into someones’ path.

7. In the wrong lane, the wrong side of the road, maybe cutting across lanes in a dangerous way.

8. You did not steer to the correct position or it was erratic, and thus positioned your car incorrectly.

9. Common fail in Bletchley is the emerge onto the Queensway from Bedford Street  opposite to the Post Office. You would have been meant to turn right, but you were in the left lane – it is a one way street.

10. Too slow and you are a pain to other road users and this can ‘encourage’ a dangerous overtake from following cars. Too fast and as well as dangerous you are breaking the law.

The other cardinal rule is;

Do not make Anyone change Lane or Speed

Better luck next time. Feel free to call me if you live in the Milton Keynes area and book a remedial driving lesson or two.

   I will from time time make a comment about dangerous driving I see in Milton Keynes. Be sure it is not you I am describing.