DRIVE

The driving part of your test will last about 40 minutes. Throughout the test your examiner will be looking for an overall safe standard of driving, including when you are carrying out the set exercises. You can make up to 15 driving faults and still pass the test (16 or more results in failure). However, if you commit one serious or dangerous fault you will fail the test.
The driving test is designed to see if you can drive safely, know The Highway Code and can demonstrate this through your driving.

The test will include an eyesight check (if you fail this, your test will not continue). The eyesight test requires you to read a number plate that is a certain distance away. The distance requirement for the old-style number plate is 20.5 metres. The distance requirement for the eyesight test with the new-style number plate is 20 metres. New-style number plates were introduced on 1 September 2001 and are easily identifiable because they start with two letters ie AB51 ABC.
After the eyesight test you will be asked two vehicle safety check questions. You will then be examined on your general driving and on a reversing exercise. The reversing exercises will be chosen from:
• reversing around a corner
• turning in the road
• reverse parking
You may also be asked to carry out a controlled stop exercise.

Vehicle safety questions
These are basic safety checks that a driver should carry out to ensure the vehicle is safe for use. Although some checks may involve the candidate opening the bonnet to identify where fluid levels would be checked, pupils will not be asked to touch a hot engine or physically check fluid levels.
Candidates will be asked two questions, one 'show me' and one 'tell me', see our ‘show me, tell me’ pages for more information. One or both questions answered incorrectly will result in one driving fault being recorded.

During the driving test the examiner will give you directions which you should follow. You will also be required to carry out an independent drive which can last up to 10 minutes. Test routes are designed to be as uniform as possible and will include a range of typical road and traffic conditions. During the test, the examiner will ask you to carry out set exercises.
Throughout the test you should drive in the way your instructor has taught you. If you make a mistake, don't worry about it, it might be a less serious driving fault and may not affect your result. The examiner will be looking for an overall safe standard of driving.
You can make up to 15 driving faults and still pass the test (16 or more results in failure). However, if you commit one serious or dangerous fault you will fail the test.
You are allowed to take someone with you on the test, this person must be over 16 years old and cannot take any part in the test.

When the driving test is over, the examiner will tell you whether you passed or failed. You can request feedback on your test from the examiner, who will then go through your performance during the test.
If you pass...
If you pass and have a photocard driving licence issued after 1 March 2004 the examiner will ask you if you want your full driving licence issued to you automatically.
If you want to use this service, the examiner will take your old licence from you, scan the details and send them electronically to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). You will then be given a pass certificate to prove you passed your test. DVLA will then send you your new full licence by post within four weeks of you passing your practical test.
If you pass your test but do not want to use this automatic service, or have a licence issued before 1 March 2004, you will be given a pass certificate by the examiner. On the back of the pass certificate it tells you what you need to do next. This involves sending your licence and appropriate fee to DVLA who will then check your application and issue you with a new full licence.
If you fail...
If you fail the test you should ask the examiner for some feedback to help prepare yourself for your next test. Your driving report form will also show you where you made any mistakes. You can take another practical test 10 working days after your car or motorcycle test.
Driving test standards
All examiners are trained to carry out the test to the same standard, they do not have pass or fail quotas. So as long as you demonstrate the standard required you will pass your driving test.

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