Driving theory test made harder

BSM learner driverThe driving theory test will pose more of a challenge from this week because of changes designed to prevent candidates learning answers by heart.

The change will mean that learner drivers will not be able to study and memorise answers from pre-published official study material.

These changes come as the AA publishes a survey which reveals that one in four drivers do not know who has priority when traffic lights are not working.

The AA/Populus poll of 11,361 drivers showed that 23% thought traffic going straight on had priority at broken traffic lights, while 3% said it was those turning right and 2% those turning left.

The correct answer is that nobody has priority.

Almost half (46%) of drivers did not know what a flashing amber light at a pelican crossing meant, the poll also showed.

Drivers aged 18-24 were the most likely to know the answer, with 68% answering correctly. But only 41% of drivers over 65 knew the answer.

Mark Peacock, head of AA Driving School said: “Knowing the theoretical rules of the road is really important for drivers.

“It’s encouraging that young drivers did better in the poll questions than older – perhaps a sign that those who have recently taken a theory test have a better understanding of driving theory than those who took it a few years ago.

“Learners should not unduly worry about the changes to the test. The new test calls for greater understanding, which can be gained from professional tuition and some time spent revising; both of which would have been needed to pass the theory test confidently before the changes.”

Road Safety Minister Mike Penning said: “By bringing a stop to publication of theory test questions we aim to encourage candidates to prepare by learning each topic area thoroughly rather than just memorising the questions and answers.

“The intention is to improve candidates’ knowledge and understanding of driving theory, so that they are more able to retain and apply it when they are on the road.”

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