What the DSA Examiner is looking for
On the UK driving test, you will be doing a lot of moving off and stopping, so its important you know what the DSA examiner is looking for, anytime you don't do what is expected, you could get a driver error, and if that error is classified as serious or dangerous, then you have blown the driving test!
Here are some driving test tips that you should bear in mind when in the car with the DSA examiner during your licence assessment that should help achieve that desired result you want, a pass!
According to the DSA DL25 report form which you get with your driving test, here is what is expected:
Moving off during the Driving Test
You need to move off smoothly and safely on level, sloping roads and at an angle taking the correct precautionary observations, while avoiding stalling the car.
This applies not just to moving off from the side of the road, but also everytime to stop in traffic, at signals, a junction or roundabout during the driving test.
The POM Routine
Get the car Prepared.
You need to do is take effective Observations, and depending on the situation you will be doing either an all round vehicle check (6 point) for moving off from the side of the road or 4 point (all mirrors and road ahead) for moving off when in traffic.
Then Move Off. When you move off during the driving test, you need to make sure you do so smoothly and under control, and that your car does not affect the safety of other road users (Pedestrians, Cylclists, Motorcycles and other cars).
If you stall the car during the test, don't panic, first secure the car by puting the handbrake on, then you can either put the clutch down and restart the engine (if you stalled in first gear while going forward or reverse gear while going backwards) or put the car in neutral and restart the engine, and then continue from there. You will get a driving error for stalling on the test, but as long as you don't lose control of the car by allowing it to roll forwards or backwards you won't fail the driving test for stalling.
When moving off during the driving test, make sure you only use your indicators where necessary and using them would benefit other road users. Your indicators should not confuse.
Stopping your car during the driving test
You will either be stopping the car on the left or in the road during the driving test.
For stopping on the left, the DSA driving report form DL25 advises 'Choose a safe, convenient and legal place to stop, close to the edge of the road where you will not obstruct the road or create a hazard. You should know how and where to stop without causing a danger to other road users.'
Mirrors, Signal, Manoeuvre (MSM)
You should always use the MSM routine before stopping the car, whether it is on the side of the road, in traffic, at junctions as the DSA driving examiner want to see you stopping safely, and not being aware of what is around you when you are about to stop is not safe.
I've explained SCALP in a previous article, and you must use this driving routine on your test to choose a location to stop the car on the left. Don't fail your driving test for stopping too close to a junction, blocking someone's driveway unless the examiner specifically instructs to stop there.
As you can see there is quite a lot of things to be assessed on just for moving off and stopping, which is why you need to develop a habit of driving at the DSA standard every single time you have a lesson or are out practicing you skills with someone else supervising you.
The best way of ensuring you pass is to be prepared properly as failing to use POM is a good example of where taking the driving test in an automatic car will not help if you don't have the right skills.
More Driving test tips
How many driving lessons will I need to pass the driving test?
Stalling on The Driving test what to do to pass.