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Most Common Mistakes For Failing Your Driving Test

It’s completely normal for learner drivers to be nervous on the day of their driving test.  Like any test, the pressure to perform can be nerve racking?  If your friends and family know when you are going for your P’s test, this can certainly add to the nerves.  The other contributing factor when sitting your driving test, is the fact that knowing you will have the RMS testing officer sitting beside you watching your every move.

Like any assessment, preparation is key. Practice! Practice! Practice!  Like anything you do.  The more you do, the better you get.  One way to help settle your nerves is to be well-prepared.  Be confident but not cocky.  There’s a big difference.  We always strongly advise everyone to Read the Guide to the Driving Test book.  Although the driving test is the practical component, it will assist with everything that you need to know about the test and how to prepare for it.

The are a couple of big myths that we continually hear from our students.  One is that the RMS Testing officers are too hard at particular RMS Service Centres.  The other popular myth is that the driving test route is too difficult at specific areas.  It’s like this, no matter where you drive or who the testing officer is, if you are competent with your hazard perception, driving and decision making skills, then you will have a better chance of passing the driving test.

There are however, other important requirements that learner drivers must be aware about to pass and get their P’s.  This is why we advise learner drivers to invest in the services of a professional driving school so you are taught the correct procedures to drive and everything you need to know about to successfully prepare for your driving test.

The Driving Test

Considering you’ve had your Learner licence for at least 12 months, logged a minimum of 120 hours driving (including 20 hours of night driving) and turned 17 years of age, then you’re ready to go for your P1 licence.

For more info about the driving test go to Getting your P1 licence.

Common Driving Test Mistakes

We find that when people fail the driving test, it’s because of important minor errors that ultimately turn out to be major ones that cost people their test.  Simple things like observation checks (commonly known as head checks) – failing to check mirrors and blind spots.  Signal errors – either not indicating long enough or just forgetting to indicate when required to do so.

So, let’s take a closer look at common mistakes people make during their driving test.

Blind spots – Failing to Head Check

Any time you move, merge, change lanes, turn or complete a manoeuvre, you must perform a head check. Checking what are blind spots when driving your blind spots is paramount and is an essential observation skill.  If you continually fail to perform a head check during your driving test, you will not pass.  Item 19. FREQUENTLY NOT PERFORMING OBSERVATION CHECKS – Guide to the Driving Test outlines that you will incur this fail item if you repeatedly miss observation checks when required.  We conduct head checks to ensure there are no vehicles, pedestrians or any possible hazards that may result in a crash or the safety of any person.  Even when you are completing a manoeuvre, you must turn your head at least 90° or chin to shoulder and check your blind spot.  You must conduct a head check before you:

  • Move to the kerb ready to complete a manoeuvre.
  • Leave the kerb to re-join the line of traffic.
  • Diverge, merge, change lanes
  • Leave the kerb to re-join the line of traffic.
  • Turning at intersections
  • Crossing lanes within a roundabout and when exiting.
  • Completing a 3 Point Turn.
  • If conducting a reverse parallel park, you must do a head check during reversing as the front of your vehicle will swing into the lane or depending on the road, you may encroach over the centre of the roadway.

Did you know that you that when moving off at a green light at traffic lights you must turn your head and check it is safe to proceed?  If you have been stopped at a red light, once the red changes to green, you must physically turn your head and check the intersection to ensure that there are no “red light runners” from any direction. The same actions apply when moving off at railway level crossings.

Read fail item 19. FREQUENTLY NOT PERFORMING OBSERVATION CHECKS – Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

Signalling – Failing to Indicate

Did you know that you must signal for at least five (5) seconds for leaving the kerb or parked position?  Drivers must understand that if you when you signal, do so at the correct time.  If you were too signal to soon or too late, this can confuse other road users.  Leaving your indicator on can also result in a problem.  Remember, a lot of people assume and therefore may act accordingly like driving out in your path if you have signalled your intent to soon.

If you repeatedly fail to signal when legally required to so, you will not pass your test.  You must signal:

To give sufficient warning to other road users of your intentions when turning left or right.

  • For at least five seconds before leaving the kerb.
  • For at least five seconds before leaving a parking space.
  • When changing lanes, diverging or pulling over to the kerb.
  • When exiting a roundabout.

Read fail item 12. FREQUENTLY NOT SIGNALLING INTENTION – Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

Stop signs – Failing to STOP

Did you know that when you approach a stop sign, you must stop completely before reaching the actual stop line, and as close as possible to the line?

This is another common mistake we find.  Students slowly proceeding through a stop sign and failing to stop.  Stop stop-sign means stop!  If you fail to stop at a stop sign, you will fail.  You must stop the whole vehicle behind the line.  Your final stopped position must be within one (1) metre of the stop line and with no part of your vehicle over the line. This is the same for traffic lights also.

Have you ever been stopped at an intersection but found it hard to see oncoming traffic due to parked cars or other obstructions?  If your vision is affected by any of these things, you may move forward into an intersection to gain a better view.  You can only do this after stopping at the stop line correctly.  You must be able to demonstrate caution without affecting other vehicles or pedestrians when moving forward.

Read the Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

Judgement & Decision Making – Failing to Give Way When Necessary

Being able to judge distance by selecting a safe gap can be tricky for some learner drivers and for that matter manyroad-signs transparent experienced drivers.  When entering traffic, changing lanes or turning at intersections, drivers need to be able to competently make critical decisions.  We find that roundabouts are probably one of the most common places where people make bad decisions when deciding if to go or not.  Sometimes, the main reason for failing to give way to other vehicles, comes down to being hesitant and in-decisive.  This then allows for oncoming traffic to be closer to you making it unsafe to proceed.  Here are some examples of why you may fail your driving test:

  • Not giving way to any vehicle that has priority over you at an intersection.
  • Not giving way to pedestrians at marked crossings and intersections.
  • Not giving way if required when entering a traffic stream, merging or lane changing.

It comes down to a combination of the three (3) things.  Judgement, decision making and experience.

Learner drivers particularly find it difficult to judge the speed of oncoming vehicles over distance.  It’s important for learner drivers throughout their learning experience, to focus on and practice entering traffic from intersections to provide them with greater confidence in being able to judge distance and speed, decide if it’s safe to proceed and act.  Remember, oncoming vehicles must be at least three (3) seconds away from your intersection to enable a safe gap.  

Read 2. FAILING TO GIVE WAY WHEN NECESSARY- Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

Speed Management – Exceeding the Speed Limit

Exceeding the speed limit during driving tests is a common mistake.  It can be challenging for learner drivers during their test due to a combination of nerves, inexperience and lack of concentration.  Many motorists are generally more concerned about getting caught by the police for speeding.  But let’s look at it form a safety perspective.  Speed can increase your chances of being involved in a crash as well as the severity of any injuries sustained.  That’s if you survive.

Did you know that even if you are a fit and alert driver, it takes about a second or twelve (12) metres of travel for you to identify a hazard, react and brake?  And at least another 20 metres to stop.  That’s if you are only travelling at 60km/h in good conditions.  If you’re travelling at higher speeds, the stopping distance distance is even greater.

You must manage your speed to ensure that it’s safe and legal.  Exceeding the speed limit is a breach of the Road Rules and a fail of your driving test.  As the driver of a vehicle it is your responsibility to manage your speed to suit traffic, weather and road conditions.  Speed Management also focuses on your Crash Avoidance Space (CAS).  You must maintain your space to the vehicle in front which is a minimum of three (3) seconds.

If the conditions are poor such as rain, you must increase this distance to a minimum of four (4) seconds.  Remember, you must maintain at least one to two car lengths from the vehicle in front when stopped in traffic.  This is simply to reduce the risk of crashing into the car in front of you were to be hit from behind.

Speed Management (Continued) – School Zones

For some reason, many learner drivers fail their driving tests because they exceed the speed limit in school zonesschool-zone-sign during school times.  And because of school times, many learners try to avoid booking their driving tests during school times.  Why? It’s just like any other posted speed limit except the speed varies during specific times.  These days, many school zones have flashing red lights to remind people to slow down.  If you are concentrating, which you should be because you are operating a motor vehicle, then school zones shouldn’t be a problem.

If you exceed the speed limit any time during your driving test, you will fail.  These times include:

  • The 40 kilometre per hour posted speed limit at school zones during the hours
    of operation which are outlined on the sign.
  • The 40 kilometre per hour limit when passing a bus with flashing lights.
  • The learner driver speed limit – 90km/h.
  • Speed limits at road works.

Read 5. EXCEEDING THE SPEED LIMIT – Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

Action Requiring Testing Officer Intervention

If at any time during your driving test, the RMS Testing Officer has to intervene, you will fail.  You are about to gain your P’s and be on your own so you should be able to make confident decisions and drive without assistance.  If the testing officer has to provide you with any verbal or physical assistance, you will fail the driving test.  If the Testing Officer has to utilise  the dual controls in an instructor’s vehicle, you will also fail.

Read 6. ACTION REQUIRING TESTING OFFICER INTERVENTION – Guide to the Driving Test for more information.

By | 2019-02-19T02:05:10+10:00 December 4th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Displaying L & P Plates in NSW

Far too often we continually see provisional drivers driving vehicles with their red or green P plates tucked inL & P Plate Holders behind and obscured by the number plates or inside of the vehicle and barely visible.  If this is something you do as a learner or provisional driver, and you come under notice of police, you may be in of the NSW Road Rules and earn yourself 2 demerit points and a substantial fine.  The other major concern is that it may create issues from a safety perspective. Worth it?  Not at all!

All learner and provisional drivers must clearly display their L and P plates on the front and rear of the outside of the vehicle – the letters must not be hidden.  If you are driving in another state, All NSW learner, P1 and P2 drivers must obey the same licence conditions and restrictions (as listed below) that apply to them in NSW when they drive in other states or territories in Australia.  Instead of drawing unnecessary attention to yourself, display your L or P plates with pride.

Always ensure that you display L plates (black on a yellow background) and P plates (red or green P on a white background), in such a manner as to be clearly visible on the front and rear of the vehicle, and on the outside. The letter P on the plate must be clearly displayed and not obscured in any way whatsoever. If you’re towing a trailer, a P plate must be on the rear of the trailer.  To prevent your L or P plates from falling from the vehicle, be sure to invest in some decent L and P plate holders.

If you would like to receive a FREE pair of L and P plate holders, click here now and we will send them out. Is there a catch?  Just pay for the small shipping fee of $7.95.

By | 2019-02-19T20:52:14+10:00 September 14th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Hazard Perception – Recognise and Respond to Hazards

A hazard is anything that can interfere with your driving ability and that can cause harm or lead to an accident.  Hazard Perception Skills are a key necessity in helping to stay safe on our roads.  Being able to recognise and respond to hazards, is a skill within itself.  Developing enhanced hazard recognition and anticipating potentially hazardous situations, makes for a safer driver.  This can include pedestrians crossing the road, broken-down vehicles, roadworks, people entering and exiting cars and other cars stopping ahead of you or entering from side roads.  Understanding appropriate responses to hazards, such as speed and positioning, is crucial.

Safe drivers know how to identify and respond to hazards. They know how to spot them sooner rather than later in order to take the required actions that will avoid potential crashes.  There three (3) main areas that safer drivers should aim to ensure;

  1. Maintaining a (3) three second gap and keeping a safe distance from other vehicles,
  2. Selecting safe gaps and,
  3. Identifying hazards.

By maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles, you have more time to identify and respond to hazards.  By selecting safe gaps when crossing traffic, turning or changing lanes this will enable you to do all of those things without being involved in a crash.  When selecting a safe gap, you must do so without impacting on the crash avoidance space of other road users.  Identifying hazards sooner rather later, behind and to the sides, is a skill that all drivers must use to avoid crashes.  Developing these key hazard perception skills and other useful safe driving skills will assist in staying safer on our roads.

New and complacent drivers sometimes do things that can increase their risk of being involved in a crash or other incident.  These can include;

• Travelling too closely behind other vehicles.
• Driving too fast for the conditions.
• Not looking far enough ahead when driving.
• Choosing unsafe gaps that are too small when making turns, crossing intersections or

Research shows that one of the most important skills to have when driving or riding, is good hazard perception.  Research also shows that rear-end crashes are the most common crash types.  This is why it is so important to keep a safe following distance.  The distance that it will take you to stop your car depends on the speed at which you are travelling. The faster you go, the longer the stopping distance.  Remember, use the three (3) second gap rule to keep a safe distance – you will need at least four (4) seconds when driving in adverse conditions.

Did you know that the average reaction time to a hazard is about 1.5 seconds? This is the time it takes from when the driver identifies a hazard to the point of taking action (Setting up, buffering etc.). Depending on the speed of the vehicle, will depend on the distance it travels during those 1.5 seconds.  Responding when hazards can enter your Crash Avoidance Space (CAS) is important.  Any time that a hazard can enter your CAS, you must always ensure that you ‘set up’ so that your reaction time is reduced.

“Setting Up” simply means that your right foot is off the accelerator and light pressure is applied to the brake pedal. This simple action enables you to protect your CAS and minimise the risk of a crash.  “Setting Up” is used in any situation where a hazard may enter the path of the vehicle. Remember, hazards can include cyclists, animals, pedestrians, and other vehicles that have the capability of entering you CAS.

Effective scanning skills and gathering as much information as possible, is always a good way to recognise and respond to hazards.  While pedestrians can appear in many various locations, you must always be vigilant particularly around
shopping centres, bus stops, intersections and schools.  You always need to continually scan the road and the footpath. Effective scanning means looking between parked cars for pedestrians, particularly children as they can be hidden.  Checking for white reverse lights, brake lights and indicators are all signs of potential hazards.

To be able to identify and respond to pedestrian hazards, ensure that you slow down in areas where you are likely to encounter pedestrians such as shopping centres, bus stops, intersections and schools.  The same goes for cyclists.  Ensure that you give all cyclists plenty of room when approaching or passing them (eg when making a left or right turn).  Remember, there are laws for safely passing cyclists.

Motorists must stay wider of bicycle riders by giving a minimum of:

  • 1m when passing a bicycle rider in a 60km/h or less speed zone
  • 1.5m where the speed limit is over 60km/h.

To help you acquire hazard perception skills, there are five interactive practice modules available, to help you practice many of the skills you need to pass the Hazard Perception Test (HPT) and become a safer driver.  Practice the HPT online.

By | 2019-02-19T02:24:59+10:00 September 3rd, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Effective Scanning Skills When Driving

The key to good observation skills is to be constantly scanning.

Scanning is keeping your eyes moving, checking in one area for a couple of seconds and then moving your eyes to another area.  Whenever you’re driving, you depend on your eyes to provide you with a clear, complete and accurate picture of your surroundings.  You should always be constantly searching for potential hazards.  A hazard is anything that may interfere with your driving to cause you to change speed or direction.  Hazards also include potentially dangerous situations that may lead to a crash or injury.

Scanning is a key hazard perception skill.  All drivers should always be scanning around all the time to avoid hazards and crashes. Effective scanning means constantly moving your eyes and/or your head whilst driving so that you can detect hazards sooner rather than later. This may include moving your body forward or to the side, in order to gain a better view.  Effective scanning also allows you to identify, react and take action, if a hazard was to present itself.  You need to be aware of what’s happening right in front of you as well as what’s ahead.

For instance you look at what the vehicle in front of you is doing – whilst at the same time also looking as far ahead as possible.  Frequently checking your mirrors and surroundings, provides you better information.  Having this information, allows you to identify potential hazards and react sooner rather than later.

Always check your mirrors frequently, as things change behind and beside you when you drive.  Remember, your vehicle has “blind spots” not covered by your mirrors so be sure to physically turn your head, chin to shoulder, and check your blind spots and look out the side windows.

When scanning look:

  • In the distance.
  • At the road surface.
  • To your left and right.
  • Regularly at your mirrors and instruments.

Depending on the vehicle, blind spots may vary.  Vehicles such as vans or trucks often have more blind spots than passenger vehicles.  Checking the blind spots with a head check is vital when you want to move, merge, turn, change lanes or when reversing.

IMPORTANT: To maintain effective scanning, you must keep your eyes and/or your head moving and not concentrating on just one spot as the driving environment changes constantly. Drive to the conditions.  If your vision is limited, slow down to a speed that’s appropriate to the conditions or driving environment.

By | 2019-02-19T08:39:18+10:00 July 6th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Can I do my driving test barefoot in NSW?

Did you know that in NSW, you can sit your driving test barefoot?  That’s correct!  You do not need to wear footwear when you go for your P’s.  We do suggest however, that you at least wear footwear into the testing centre.  Once you complete the initial paperwork and return to your vehicle for the driving test, take your shoes off and place them in the boot or on the floor behind the front passengers seat.  Remember, for your driving test, you must secure any loose objects in the vehicle that may interfere with vehicle control or cause injury during hard braking.

Currently, there is no legislation that requires a driver to wear footwear whilst driving a motor vehicle in New South Wales.  However, you should consider the consequences if you were involved in a serious accident.  Wearing appropriate footwear could protect your feet from broken glass or other sharp objects.  Depending on where you’re going, may depend on what footwear you choose to wear.  However, this footwear may not be appropriate for the drive!

Wearing thongs, stilettos, high heel shoes or any other footwear that may make it difficult to use the foot pedals, is a bad idea.  Perhaps wearing no shoes is more appropriate in this instance.  As a safety measure, Learn Drive Survive recommend wearing appropriate and comfortable footwear when operating any motor vehicle.

By | 2019-02-19T16:40:35+10:00 June 11th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Should I avoid doing my driving test during school hours?

Should I avoid doing my driving test during school hours?  This is one of the common questions we get asked by many students ready to attempt their driving test.  And unfortunately, there are many driving schools or driving instructors out there who encourage learner drivers to complete their P’s test outside of school hours.  What a complete joke!  The simple fact is, if you’re ready to get your P’s and drive solo, it shouldn’t matter what time of the day or night it is.  We even hear about many learners travelling to different RMS testing centres away from their local area, because the testing officers are “more lenient.”

If you’re under 25 years old you’ve completed a minimum of 120 hours, apart from the usual nerves when like most assessments,  you should be feeling confident and driving competently in order to pass your driving test.  If you have prepared well and practiced, it shouldn’t matter when or where you sit your test.  Like any posted speed limit whether it be a 50km/h or 60 km/h zone, adjust your speed.  You will generally see a bright red flashing circle around the ’40’ and sometimes together with the flashing amber lights warning you.  So please, when the time comes for you to sit your driving test, don’t be afraid or feel like you can’t pass your driving test during school hours because when you get your P’s school zones will still apply!

By | 2019-02-18T17:50:37+10:00 June 8th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Who Gives Way at Intersections – Give Ways Rules

Give way rules apply at all intersections no matter if the intersection is controlled by STOP or Give Way signs.  Give way rules still apply at roundabouts and even at intersections or crossroads, where there are no lines or signs.  Did you know that according to the Bureau of Statistics, almost half of the road crashes in NSW occur at intersections.  Intersections should never be rushed.  Whether or not you have to STOP or Give Way, you should always take your time to ensure it’s safe to proceed.

Some crossroads may not have traffic control lights or signs. If you’re turning across the path of another vehicle, you must give way.  Anytime that you turn at an intersection, you must give way to:

  • Oncoming vehicles going straight ahead (if you are turning right).
  • Oncoming vehicles turning left (if you are turning right).
  • Any vehicle on your right (if you are turning left or right).

If you and an oncoming vehicle are turning right at an intersection (across the path of one another), both vehicles should pass in front of each other.

4-Way Intersections

Give way rules at 4-way intersections, always seem to not just confuse learner drivers, but also experienced drivers.  We have found that many learner drivers aren’t sure who gives way or who has right of way and become somewhat ‘flustered’.

  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle who is approaching from your right and they appear to be travelling straight ahead, give way to your right.
  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle who is approaching from your left and right and both appear to be travelling straight ahead, give way to both.
  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle opposite you who appears to be turning right, they give way to you no matter if you are travelling straight or turning left.
  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle opposite you who appears to be turning left and you intend on turning right (same direction as the opposite vehicle), they have right of way as they are closest to the kerb.
  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle who appears to be turning right (your left) and you intend on turning right (their left), you can both proceed by passing in front of one another.
  • If you approach a 4-way intersection at the same time as a vehicle to your left and who appears to be travelling straight ahead or turning left or right, they give way to you.

This generally applies when vehicles approach the STOP sign or line at the same time.  Which ever vehicle approached first, they generally have the right of way.

Another common problem we find is that learner drivers get confused with the ‘Give Way to your right rule’.  When leaving a road and there is another vehicle waiting to turn, many learners will slow right down and/or come to a stop thinking they have to give way to the vehicle ready to enter the road their turning off. See below example.   

In this situation, the grey vehicle waiting to turn must give way to the blue car turning right.  However, never assume that the other vehicle will apply the give way rule and ensure they wait to give way to you when making the turn.  A rather simple and non-complex way of thinking about applying the give way rule is like this.  Assume you are travelling along a stretch of road, that’s ‘your’ road.  Anyone who wishes to enter ‘your’ road, must give way to you.  No matter if they are leaving a driveway, leaving the kerb to enter the lane of traffic or turning from a side street, they must apply the give way rule and give way to you.

Now assume you are turning off that stretch of road, any vehicle waiting to turn from the road you intend to enter, must give way to you first.  Once you turn onto the new road, that’s ‘your’ road and the same give way rule applies.

If you are not familiar with the give way rules, it is a good idea to do some research so that you understand who has right of way at intersections.  Another good idea is to stop near a busy intersection and watch the traffic.  Not only will you get a better understanding of how the give way rule applies, you will probably also see how many drivers simply ignore STOP signs and fail to obey the road rules. Like anything, the more you do the better you become so practice and repeat so that you will feel more confident and competent when entering and exiting intersections.

By | 2019-02-19T20:25:44+10:00 April 30th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

RMS Driving Test Tips

These “RMS Driving Test Tips”, will certainly help you in preparing for your driving test.  Many learner drivers attempt their driving test however, are unfamiliar with certain criteria that must be met in order to successfully pass.  Many parents and supervising drivers, do a good job in getting their learner driver up to an acceptable driving skill level.  Unfortunately, many parents and supervisors are not aware of certain curriculum that is expected during the driving test.

The driving test is an important step in gaining your Provisional Licence commonly known as P’s. You will be assessed based on your driving performance in a range of situations and your ability to demonstrate low risk behaviours.  It is a good idea to read the ‘Guide to the Driving Test’ booklet, as it is a general guide about what is in the driving test.  The guide also provides examples of what you must do to drive safely and pass the test.  If you would like a hard copy of this guide, attend your nearest Service Centre.

Whilst being assessed during your driving test, some actions and behaviours are classed as fail items.  Here is a list of all the fail items along with some examples of how they may happen on a driving test.  Below is a list of reasons of why you may fail your driving test.  For the purposes of this blog, we have included instances such as exceeding the speed limit, Not stopping at a red traffic light or failing to give way.

Instead, we have included a list of common ‘fail items’ that you should be aware of prior to your driving test.


  • Not stopping at a yellow traffic light when it is safe to do so.  You must stop at a yellow light unless sudden braking might cause a crash.
  • Not stopping correctly at a stop line.  Your final stopped position must be within one metre of the stop line and with no part of your car over the line.


  • This includes mounting or straddling (one wheel either side of) a traffic dome and mounting the kerb or roundabout.

You will fail if you exceed the speed limit at any time including:

  • The 40 kilometre per hour limit at school zones during the hours of operation.
  • The 40 kilometre per hour limit when passing a bus with flashing lights.
  • The learner driver speed limit.
  • Speed limits at road works.


  • If the testing officer has to give you verbal or physical assistance, including using the dual controls in an instructor’s vehicle, you will fail.


  • This fail item covers any unsafe act or behaviour that puts you or others at risk.  This includes overtaking in an unsafe manner, or giving way unnecessarily.


  • Allowing the vehicle to roll back more than 500mm when moving off.
  • Clutch coasting (allowing the vehicle to roll along with your foot on the clutch) or coasting in neutral.
  • Not maintaining effective control of the steering wheel includes one hand steering and letting go of the steering wheel.

You will fail if you repeatedly do not signal when legally required to do so.

  • Indicate for at least five seconds before leaving the kerb.
  • Indicate for at least five seconds before leaving a parking space
  • When changing lanes, diverging or pulling over to the kerb
  • When exiting a roundabout.

You will fail if you unreasonably obstruct other vehicles or pedestrians during the test.

  • Drive significantly below the speed limit when prevailing conditions do not require it.

During the manoeuvres you will fail if;

  • The final position of your car is more than one metre from the kerb or obstructing traffic.
  • Your wheels are on or over marked parking lines.
  • You reverse more than seven metres from the vehicle in front during the reverse park section of the test.


  • You will fail if you follow too closely to the vehicle in front (Allow at least 3 seconds in ideal conditions and 4 seconds in adverse conditions).

You will incur this fail item if you repeatedly miss observation checks when required.  Failing to perform observation commonly known as ‘head or shoulder checks’ is probably one of the most common reasons why learners fail their driving test.  To conduct a head check, you must turn your head chin to shoulder.  You must ensure to perform a head check any time that you;

  • Leave or return to the kerb.
  • Merge, diverge or change lanes.
  • Are about to reverse, such as in a reverse parallel park and 3 point turn.
  • Turn at intersections, leave or join the road.
  • Cross lanes within a roundabout on exiting.

Remember: When moving off after being stopped at traffic lights and railway level crossings, you must turn your head and check it is safe to proceed.

When attempting your driving test, make sure you take your time.  Don’t hurry anything, particularly at roundabouts and intersections.  You need to take your time to make for good decision making.  When performing maneuouvres, don’t hurry for any vehicles waiting for you to complete the maneuouvre, as this will most probably cause you to make mistakes.  The person you try and hurry for will not pay for your next test fee!

By | 2019-02-19T21:22:44+10:00 April 2nd, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Understanding the NSW Road Rules

How well do you know the NSW Road Rules?  Understanding some basic rules can certainly help a learner driver during the learning process of driving.  The Road Users’ Handbook outlines the main rules which apply to road users and is strongly recommended to be read and understood should you hold a driver’s licence in NSW.

The Road Users’ Handbook explains the road rules and road signs applicable to everyone driving on NSW roads.  If you are looking to attempt the Driver Knowledge Test also known as the DKT, reading through this booklet or reading it online, will certainly assist you when answering the questions.

There are certain road rules in NSW that are misunderstood and that drivers are not aware of.  The Transport for NSW released a publication to assist drivers titled, “Top 10 misunderstood road rules in NSW”.  This simple guide contains information on roundabouts, merging, intersections and other driving related situations. Particularly as a learner driver, reading, learning and understanding these rules, will assist in making better decisions.

By | 2019-02-18T10:57:49+10:00 March 25th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Hiring a car during the Christmas holiday period

Holiday time

So, you got your P’s and now it’s time to go on holidays with your family and/or friends. To ensure you have a fantastic holiday be sure to follow some of the following tips to make your time away enjoyable, safe and affordable. Be sure to do your online research for all types of car hire companies and read the fine print.

There is limited number of Australian rental car companies that are able to hire to drivers under the age of 25 as well as drivers holding an Australian Provisional Drivers Licence. Most of the time you can rent a car if you are on your ‘P’ Plates but you must be on a “full cover” package if you are over 21 years of age.

Another important aspect of choosing a hire car that is right for you is to choose a car that you may be comfortable with i.e. choose a vehicle like the size and style of the car you have learnt to drive in. You are a much safer driver if you are feeling comfortable with your surrounds. Remember, only drive automatic transmission vehicles, or clutch less manual vehicles, if you took your driving test in this type of vehicle. Your licence card will show the A034 condition on the front.

Vehicle restriction laws

P1 and P2 drivers are banned from driving high-performance vehicles that have:

  • Power to tare mass ratios of greater than 130kW per tonne or,
  • Modified engines that need to be approved by an engineer or,
  • Other high performance classifications

You can find approved vehicles in the P1/P2 vehicle search.

Passenger limits for P1 and P2 drivers

P1 drivers under 25 are not permitted to drive with more than one passenger under 21 between the hours of 11pm and 5am. P1 or P2 drivers who are issued with a new licence after a period of being disqualified from driving, will for 12 months only be allowed to carry one passenger.

Very important things to check

Remember to ask the car hire company any relevant questions such as, when the car last was last serviced and the phone number of who to contact if you have any problems.
Always write down the actual odometer reading to keep a personal record of how many kilometres the hire car has done. Lastly, filling the vehicle with a full tank of fuel before returning is usually cheaper than the rate which the set out by the car hire company to do so.


Be sure to read the fine print very well. You may find that shopping around can save you quite a lot. Whilst rental vehicle excess benefit does not take the place of Rental Vehicle Insurance. 1cover.com.au will reimburse you up to $5,000 on our comprehensive plans for any excess or deductible which you become legally liable to pay under your Rental Vehicle hiring agreement if the Rental Vehicle is involved in an accident while you are driving, or is damaged or stolen while in your custody.

By | 2019-02-19T07:16:57+10:00 December 29th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments
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