The Most Common Driving Tests Fails

Driving tests since the CoronaVirus pandemic have been hard to grab hold of. With a huge backlog, stemming from the lockdowns and social distancing, it meant that driving lessons were pretty much not allowed full stop. Students half-way through their learning journey had to halt and those who were brand new and ready to start, couldn’t. 

We had a look at the Government’s database and found that the pass rate for driving tests between April 2019 and March 2020, was 45.9%.

A pretty low percentage, we must say, but why is the number so low?

We’re not talking about naff driving instructors or having a wobbly on the day… What are the actual manoeuvres that are causing some trouble? We had a look through some databases to find the real reasons…

The Most Common Driving Tests Failings – UK

1. Poor observations at junctions

  • Failing to judge the speed of approaching vehicles
  • Entering a roundabout with vehicle approaching from the right
  • Making no observations at all
  • Going straight on at crossroads
  • Looking too late

Roundabout Image

2. Not using mirrors properly when changing direction

  • Not using mirrors when exiting a roundabout
  • Causing a vehicle to slow when changing lanes on dual carriageway
  • Trying to change lanes with a vehicle next to you on a roundabout


3. Not controlling the steering 

  • Not steering enough when turning left
  • Not steering enough around a bend
  • Steering late turning right to a minor road
  • Mounting the pavement when pulling on the left
  • Late steering moving past parked vehicles

Man controlling steering

4. Incorrect positioning at ‘turn right’ junctions

  • In the left-hand lane when turning right at a roundabout
  • Obstructing traffic whilst turning right


5. Not setting off safely

  • Moving off from behind a parked vehicle into the path of approaching vehicle
  • Moving from side of road with no blind spot checks
  • Not making any rear observations when moving on from an emergency stop


6. Not responding appropriately to traffic lights

  • Failing to react to a red light
  • Stopping after the first white line for cyclists
  • Not setting off when appropriate to do so turning right
  • Not setting off when all is safe with a green light
  • Setting off when there is a green light but it is not safe

Poor road positioning

7. Poor normal road positioning

  • Driving too close to the kerb or road centre
  • Cutting across the road position to a roundabout with no lane markings


8. Traffic signs response incorrect

  • Going the wrong side of ‘keep left’ sign
  • Ignoring a ‘stop’ or ‘no entry’ sign
  • Driving in a bus lane
  • Choosing wrong lane at roundabout with clear signage
  • Acting late or not at all to speed limit changes


9. No control of the vehicle when setting off

  • Stalling and rolling back when trying to move off
  • Repeatedly stalling when moving off
  • Stalling repeatedly when moving off on one occasion
  • Trying to move off without selecting a gear and then rolling back

Driving Test

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