The insurance company Direct Line has conducted a survey to find out if drivers would pass their driving test if there were to take it again today. They conducted mock driving tests on 50 drivers around the country to see how they would fare if they were sitting a real driving test. Staggeringly 75% of those surveyed would have failed their test hid it been a real test, and those that failed did so with an average of 3-4 serious or dangerous faults.
Candidates taking a real driving test are only allowed to commit up to 15 minor driving faults and no serious or dangerous faults, so the survey conducted by Direct Line raises the question of whether drivers should be retested again after a certain length of time.
The problem with retesting drivers is quite simply the strain this would put on the DVLS, the examining body, where the current waiting time for a practical driving test exceeds 10 weeks in certain areas of the country.
When analysing surveys such as this one by Direct Line, it is important to understand the drivers surveyed a bit more; including their age, driving habits and where they live. How long have the participants held their driving licenses for? Have they been involved in any accidents since holding their license? How regularly do they drive each week? Did they conduct the mock driving test in the participant’s locality? And, what were the road conditions like compared with other days? Many things can affect a drivers performance on their driving test…most notably nerves! So it is important not to get too carried away with these results.
There is always help and support for drivers who feel they need to improve their skills. Some professional driving schools provide refresher driving lessons to helps work on areas that the individual needs help with, whether that be confidence building, parking or even motorway driving. Whilst you can do something to improve your own driving ability, the debate about retesting drivers is sure to run and run!