Before becoming a licensed driver there are hours of practice you must first complete. Even though you have been preparing to take this test and learning the rules of the road, you don’t want one small slip-up to derail your whole driving exam. Listed below are some common mistakes people make and what you should do instead. Keep these tips in mind so that you can stay focused on what’s important – passing that test and becoming a safe driver!
Coming to a rolling-stop is one of the most common mistakes, so be sure to come to a full and complete stop when arriving at a stop-sign or a red light. When coming to a four-way stop intersection it’s important to remember who has the right-of-way. If you arrive at the intersection at the same time as another vehicle, the vehicle to the right has the right-of-way and they are to continue first.
Unless otherwise posted, you can make a right-hand turn at a red light. You must come to a full stop at the right light before making your turn. The vehicles driving through the intersection perpendicular to you have a green light so it is important to stop and wait until you are able to proceed. Remember that pedestrians might also be crossing, so be sure to allow them to cross.
Be sure that you are stopping at the proper spot. If there is a stop line marked on the pavement, you are to stop at it. If there is no stop line, you are to stop at the crosswalk even if it is not marked. If there is no crosswalk, stop at the edge of the sidewalk and if there is no sidewalk you are to stop at the edge of the intersection.
Not Checking Your Blind Spot
Another dangerous mistake to make when driving is not checking your blind spot. It is not sufficient enough to check your blind spot with only your eyes, be sure to shoulder-check and turn your head fully. Using your whole body to shoulder-check will let your examiner know that you are checking your blind spot at the appropriate and necessary times, such as changing lanes and making turns.
Proper Hand Positioning
It is important during your driver’s test to place your hands in the proper positioning on the steering wheel. For automatic vehicles, be sure both of your hands are at 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock and use proper hand-over-hand motions when turning. For standard vehicles, you are to have both hands on the wheel unless you are changing gears.
Adjust for Changing Road Conditions
Canadian weather can sometimes be unpredictable and can create all sorts of dangerous driving conditions. Winter storms and sudden summer downpours can sometimes cause drivers to become anxious behind the wheel. Be sure to stay calm if the weather causes the conditions of the road to be less than ideal. It is important to pay attention to the road, drive safely and, as a rule of thumb, be sure to slow down.
Although most accidents are a result of driving too fast or performing unpredictable maneuvers, accidents can also occur from a driver being too hesitant. Driving too slowly or being indecisive as you drive can be dangerous to you and the drivers around you. If you are making a lane change, turning, or merging on a highway, make sure your moves are crisp and pre-calculated.
Watch Your Speed
Speeding is another common mistake that is made during a driving test. It is important to pay attention to the road signs and to abide by the posted speed limits. Be sure to check your speedometer often, adjust your speed accordingly if you are driving too slow, and use your brake if you are driving too fast.
Put Your Phone Away
Using a hand-held device when driving is illegal in Canada and this charge comes with a hefty fine, demerit points, and a licence suspension. Although you may be used to having your phone in the car with you while driving, you don’t want to risk your phone going off during your test and the instructor determine that you are distracted. Either leave your phone on silent, turn it off completely, or even leave it back at the test center with a parent or a friend.
Even after you get your driver’s licence, you may still find yourself in trouble for making any of these mistakes. If you are charged with careless driving in Guelph, are fighting a traffic ticket, or need the help of a paralegal in Ontario, contact Bulwark Legal Services. Our experienced team of paralegals will work