Massive Changes Are Being Made To Driving Tests
Driving tests are hard enough as it is, but adding in big changes just shakes up the entire process.
Nerves strike early when you consider you might be asked about the ideal depth of tyre tread, or when you think about being asked to do an emergency stop.
Great Awful news, then, that a big change is being added.
Given the popularity and advancement of sat navs, learners will be expected to use one efficiently, the Mirror reports. Probably an instant fail for screaming at it when it tells you to make a U-turn on a one way street and tells you to go "straight on" down a cul-de-sac.
As if that wasn't enough of a panic inducer, other things will be added to the tests. Manoeuvres like three point turns, reversing around a corner and parallel parking will be replaced by things like reversing into a parking bay, something even some experienced drivers hate doing. Independent driving will also be longer, and there'll be less instructions given with regards to directions.
Transport minister Andrew Jones has said that these changes will help make our roads safer in the long run.
"We have some of the safest roads in the world but we are always looking to make them safer," he said. "These changes announced today will help reduce the number of people killed or injured on our roads and equip new drivers with the skills they need to use our roads safely.
"Ensuring the driving test is relevant in the 21st century, for example the introduction of sat navs, will go a long way towards doing this."
The last time such a big difference was made in driving tests was back in 1996, when theory tests were introduced. Ask your parents, they'll likely say something along the lines of "If I were to take a driving test today, I don't think I'd pass."
The changes will be put into motion on December 4, the Mirror reports. So, if you're learning, and can't be arsed with all this commotion, get it booked now.
One things for sure, whether you do it before then or not, you won't be getting very far if you go about it like Craig Barraza.
The poor guy suffered massively from pre-test jitters, with his mind going completely blank when the clock ticked to test time.
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Credit: Deadline News
The 33-year-old Scotsman drove on through the nerves, however, and lasted a full five seconds before he'd failed his test.
Taking a 50/50 chance, he left his test centre and immediately went into the right hand lane after forgetting which side of the road to drive on.
"You do realise you're on the wrong side of the road?" said the examiner. Poor Craig was forced to finish the remainder of the test even though he'd already failed. And to add more oil into his carburettor, he'd have passed based on the last 40 minutes of driving.
"I was only just leaving the centre to get out. We were literally just five seconds into it," he said. "I was approaching the junction to exit it and I had an absolute mind blank, questioning in my head: 'What side of the road do we drive on'?
"I had a 50/50 chance, and I chose to exit it in the right lane. Instant fail. Had I not been so stupid I'd have breezed through."
Credit: Deadline News
His examiner and instructor claimed they'd never seen anything like it. Family and friends were quick to laugh at the poor lad, saying that old adage, 'the best drivers pass second time'.
After being put off getting behind the wheel at 17, having stalled at a roundabout, the 33-year-old decided to take up lessons again, spending around £1,000.
"My examiner with 20 years' experience, and my instructor with 30 years', both have never witnessed anything like it in their careers, they said," Craig added. "I hadn't even left the test centre car park.
"I've avoided driving because when I was 17 I stalled at a roundabout which just completely put me off.
"But I was more confident now. I think it's when you get older you get a bit wiser but that's rich coming from me after failing like that. I've lived in the UK my whole life so there's no excuse for not driving on the left."
Featured Image Credit: PA