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[transport malta] Guidelines for the Conducting of Practical Tests Category b guidelines for the Conducting of Practical Tests – Category B


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[TRANSPORT MALTA]

Guidelines for the Conducting of Practical Tests

Category B

Guidelines for the Conducting of Practical Tests – Category B
This document aims at providing Driving Examiners with guidelines on the carrying out of practical driving tests, with the aim of ensuring consistency when carrying out such tests. In the interest of transparency, these guidelines are also being made available to motoring schools, instructors and candidates for a better understanding on what is to be expected from the practical test.
Driving tests are conducted in accordance with the provisions of the Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) Regulations, and include the subjects in the Fifth Schedule.
Candidates must satisfy the examiner that they can demonstrate the required knowledge and skills, and that they exhibit the behaviour required for an overall safe standard of driving. The objective of the test is to ensure that the candidate is well grounded in the basic principles of safe driving, and is sufficiently practiced to be able to show, at the time of the test, that they are a competent and considerate driver and are not a danger to themselves or to other road users.
Examiners should remember that in most cases, candidates will be novices and will have had only limited driving experience, and will have been accompanied by an instructor or other tutor. It would therefore be unreasonable to expect them to demonstrate the degree of skill and road sense of a seasoned driver.
It must also be appreciated that many candidates will also be more nervous during the driving test than when driving with their instructor or with a friend. A pleasant outgoing approach, not only in the waiting area and on the way to the vehicle, but throughout the test is particularly important to help candidates to relax. It is therefore up to the examiner to try to ensure that the candidates are put at ease throughout the test.
The assessment must be an accurate reflection of the candidate’s driving ability demonstrated during the test, to drive safely on a variety of roads. Driving examiners shall pay particular attention to an applicant’s ability to drive defensively and in an environmentally friendly manner. This takes into account road and weather conditions, hazard perception, the interests of other road users (particularly the more vulnerable) and awareness and planning.

The driving examiner will assess whether the applicant is:




  • Controlling the vehicle whilst taking into account: proper use of safety belts, rear-view mirrors, head restraints; seat; proper use of lights and other ancillary equipment; proper use of clutch, gearbox, accelerator, braking systems, steering;




  • Controlling the vehicle under different circumstances, at different speeds; steadiness on the road; taking into account the weight, dimensions and characteristics of the vehicle;




  • Carrying out all-round observation; making effective use of all mirrors; looking well ahead




  • Acting correctly at crossroads, intersections and junctions




  • Taking a correct position on the road, in lanes, on roundabouts, round bends, pre-positioning.




  • Keeping adequate distance to the front and the side, and from other road users;




  • Making progress but not exceeding the maximum allowed speed; adapting speed to weather/traffic conditions and where appropriate up to national speed limits; driving at such a speed that stopping within distance of the visible and free road is possible;




  • Observing traffic lights, road signs and other indications: acting correctly at traffic lights; obeying instructions from traffic controllers; acting correctly in accordance with road signs (prohibitions or commands); taking appropriate action at road markings;




  • Giving signals where necessary, correctly and properly timed; indicating directions correctly; taking appropriate action with regard to all signals made by other road users;




  • Braking and stopping effectively: decelerating in time, braking or stopping according to circumstances; awareness and anticipation;




  • Recognising traffic dangers and assessing their seriousness;




  • In sufficient command of their vehicle not to create dangerous situations and to react appropriately should such situations occur;







  • Detecting any major technical faults in their vehicles, in particular those posing a safety hazard, and have them remedied in an appropriate fashion;




  • Taking into account factors affecting driving behaviour (e.g. alcohol, fatigue, poor eyesight, etc.) so as to retain full use of the faculties needed to drive safely;




  • Helping to ensure the safety of all road users, and in particular the vulnerable by showing due respect and courtesy for others.

1 Key Principles for Driving Examiners

The following are the key principles to be applied consistently throughout the tests by all Driving Examiners:




  • Adopt a customer focused approach ensuring that all candidates have a positive experience throughout the test;




  • Candidates should be given clear directions in a timely manner to ensure that they have all the relevant information to enable them to give of their best;




  • Recognise when certain traffic situations and road layouts require you to give the candidate more information and ensure that any additional confirmation is provided in a timely manner, and that any ambiguity is addressed. It is the examiner’s responsibility to ensure that the candidate is left in no doubt as to what is expected of them;




  • Never put candidates in a position to breach road markings, signage or legislation, whether directly or indirectly;




  • Examiners are not to put themselves in a position where official duty and personal interest conflict;




  • Recording (both visual/audio) in any form or manner is not allowed;







  • Driving Examiners’ uniform and personal attire should be appropriate at all times;




  • This is not a test of language skills, so speak clearly, translate where necessary, and repeat where necessary;




  • Personal questions and/or statements are not allowed;




  • Any comments or body language that may be interpreted as offensive, even if intended to break the ice, or joke, should be avoided;




  • If a candidate is in difficulties and clearly suffering from nervousness, the examiner should offer a few words of reassurance to help them settle down and if appropriate allow a few moments for composure;




  • At the end of the test provide the candidate with relevant feedback in a concise, factual and friendly manner.




  • Avoid unnecessary cancellation of driving tests. Examiners are advised to exercise considered judgement and discretion so that no candidate whose test could reasonably be conducted is turned away.



2 Driving Test Procedure

2.1 Welcoming the Candidate

2.1.1 Proceed to waiting area, ask for the candidate by name and greet them pleasantly. In an effort to create a more relaxed and informal atmosphere during the test, examiners are encouraged to introduce themselves with their first name, and use the candidate's first name, provided there is no objection. As self-introduction works best when it is spontaneous, the examiner should do this on the way to the car, or wait until seated inside it in cases of bad weather.


2.1.2 Examiners are to use a form of words that suits their own style and personality, and commensurate with the person that they are speaking to.
2.1.3 Examiners may refuse to carry out the test if the candidate arrives later than the scheduled time. In such cases, this is to be reported on the test sheet. Guidance is provided to examiners by the Senior Driving Examiner
2.2 Fill out DTR1 with candidate’s details taken from test certificate

2.2.1 Candidates should be informed politely that they have the right to have someone (like their instructor, family or friend) with them throughout the test in the vehicle. If they chose not to have anyone present, they should be requested to sign the declaration at the bottom of the report, confirming that they accept not to have anyone with them. The test must not take place unless this is signed.


2.2.2 When a test certificate indicates a vehicle with manual transmission and the vehicle presented by the motoring school/candidate has automatic transmission, or vice versa, the examiner should consult the application form. If the category information recorded on the application is not in accord, examiners should alter as required and ask the instructor or candidate to countersign. Examiners can then proceed with test. The test should not be cancelled unless the school/candidate requests that a different vehicle is used, and hence another test is booked if necessary.
2.2.3 Ask the candidate’s instructor/accompanying person to read and sign the insurance declaration at the top of the DTR1. This must be signed and the test must not take place unless this is signed. If there is resistance, the requirement should be explained by the Examiner.
2.2.4 Examiners should not test a candidate who has already failed a test with the same examiner in the same licence category. It is up to the Examiners to refer these cases to the Senior Driving Examiner who will randomly swap the test with another examiner.

2.2.5 If a Driving Examiner finds on their test programme a candidate who is a personal friend, family, or anyone else whose test they consider it would be unwise to conduct, they should at once inform the Senior Driving Examiner who may decide to take the test or transfer the test to another Examiner randomly.



2.3 Ask the candidate for their ID card or passport as proof of identity

Examiners should ensure that the person sitting for the test is the actual candidate. This should be done by comparing the photo on the ID card or passport with the actual person. If the candidate does not have the ID card or passport at the start of the test, then the test should still take place, and the candidate will be given until the end of the working day to present the ID card or passport to the same examiner, after the test is carried out. In these cases, this should be recorded in the test report sheet, and if the candidate does not present the ID card, the test result will not be processed, and should be referred to administration.


2.4 Selection of Route

Examiners will select the route to be followed based on different road environments to encompass as many real driving situations as possible in a balanced manner, including dual carriage ways, one way streets, urban driving, and tunnels.


2.5 Examiner to give brief on test procedure

2.5.1 A pre-test brief should be given by the examiner before the test takes place. This can be given during the walk to the car, or, if the distance is short, in the car itself. This should outline what will happen during the test.


2.5.2 If the wipers and ancillary controls are already activated at the start of the test, examiners are to point this out to the candidate. This should not be recorded as a fault. However if the candidate does not know how to deactivate them in a reasonable amount of time, this should be recorded as a fault under ancillary controls.
2.6 Perform Eyesight Check

2.6.1 Examiners should start by reminding candidates to wear their glasses/lenses before this check, and that they should keep them on for the duration of the test.


2.6.2 Select a clean standard number plate on a stationary vehicle which is clearly more than 20.5m away, but not more than 50m away, and which can be clearly viewed by the candidate (no obstructions). The candidate should first be asked to read the number plate.
2.6.3 If the candidate is unsuccessful, they should be asked to read another plate and, if necessary, allowed to walk forward until it is just over the appropriate distance of 20.5m away.
2.6.4 If the second plate is not read correctly, the examiner must use the official tape to measure the precise distance from a third plate.
2.6.5 If the candidate fails to read the third plate, and the examiner is satisfied beyond doubt of their inability to comply with the eyesight requirement, the candidate should be told that he/she has not reached the required eyesight standard and this means immediate failure to pass the test and that the remainder of the test will not be able to be carried out.
2.6.6 The vision test box on the DTR1 should be marked with an oblique stroke. A DTR1C should be issued, and the candidate asked to sign, acknowledging that they were unable to comply with the eyesight requirement.
2.6.7 If the candidate uses glasses/lenses to read a number plate, and then removes them to drive, the examiner should point out that if they can only read the plate with the aid of glasses/lenses, the law requires them to be worn whenever they are driving, and therefore the test cannot be continued if the glasses are removed. Candidates should be given a chance to wear the glasses again after having been informed. If they subsequently do not wear them, examiners should inform them that the test is being terminated.
2.6.8 If the candidate presents him/herself with or without eyesight correction and this is contrary to what is written on the test certificate, but the candidate still passes the eyesight test, then this can be marked on the DTR1 form, and the test can continue. Once the test is completed, explain to the candidate that any restrictions which appear on the original application (as endorsed by their doctor) will be transferred to their driving licence and that this cannot be altered without presentation of additional medical certification, even if the test was carried out successfully without the glasses/lenses.
2.7 Ask vehicle safety check questions

2.7.1 Candidates should be asked two vehicle safety check questions before moving away – a “show me”, and a “tell me” question. These are basic safety checks that a driver should be able to carry out to make sure the vehicle is safe for use. To ensure uniformity, they must be selected randomly from the bank of combinations of questions listed in Appendix 1. However, examiners will need to exercise common sense and discretion at times, for example in deciding whether a question which involves opening the bonnet is appropriate in high winds or heavy rain. In this case, examiners should use an alternative combination of questions from Appendix 1.


2.7.2 The code of the question should be recorded on the DTR1 form in the report section for future reference.
2.7.3 Although some checks may involve the candidate in opening the bonnet to identify where fluid levels would be checked, candidates must not be asked to touch a hot engine or physically check the fluid levels.
2.7.4 One or both questions answered incorrectly will result in one driving fault being recorded on the DTR1 in the appropriate box. However, examiners should not pursue questions unduly in an attempt to elicit the precise responses listed. They should bear in mind that these are basic safety checks, and that in-depth knowledge is not required for the answers to be acceptable.
2.7.5 Examiners need to be aware that although it may be necessary in order to carry out some of the checks, the ability to open the bonnet is, in itself, not one of the competencies which candidates are required to demonstrate. Instructors are expected to teach it, but should a candidate experience difficulty, it will be acceptable for the accompanying driver or instructor to assist in the opening and closing of the bonnet. Candidates should not be penalised if this proves necessary.
2.7.6 As vehicle technology advances, more and more vehicles are being equipped with electronic diagnostic systems, which inform the driver of the state of the engine fluid levels and tyre pressures. It is acceptable for a candidate to refer to the vehicle information system (if fitted) when answering questions on fluid levels or tyre pressures.
2.8 Visually check test vehicle

2.8.1 Before entering the vehicle, the examiner should make a brief visual check of direction indicators, stop lamps, and tyres. If this reveals any obvious damage, which raises doubts as to whether they are operational and safe, the examiner should offer to assist the candidate/instructor in making a practical check and ask them to operate the appropriate control, or observe the tyre condition. If the suspect item does not function satisfactorily, the candidate/instructor should be given the opportunity to rectify the fault.


2.8.2 If this cannot be done within five minutes, the examiner should consult with the Senior Driving Examiner or another examiner, who together will decide to terminate the test. It is in the interest of all parties that decisions to terminate tests for this reason are taken collectively. It is also the responsibility of the examiner to report this case to administration for follow up, who in turn should formally request the motoring school for a visual technical inspection by the technical unit.
2.8.3 In deciding whether or not direction indicators, stop lamps, tyres are in an acceptable condition for the purposes of the test, examiners should be guided by the principle that no candidate should be turned away whose test could reasonably be conducted.
2.8.4 Cars presented for test must be fitted with a passenger seatbelt, rear seat belts, passenger head restraint and an interior mirror for the examiner's use. A spare stick-on interior mirror should be kept at the driving test centre. It is not a legal requirement that the head restraint is adjustable, but the passenger seat head restraint must be fitted as an integral part of the seat. 'Slip-on' type head restraints are not permissible.
2.8.5 Examiners should not conduct a test in a vehicle with an expired road licence, since this may imply that there is no insurance and also no valid VRT. In such cases, the examiner has the right and obligation to refuse the test with the vehicle, without needing to refer to anyone else.
2.8.6 Examiners should not conduct a test in a vehicle without L-plates, even in the case of private instructors. This may not apply to holders of valid international licences.
2.9 Instruct candidate to enter vehicle and make themselves comfortable

2.9.1 The examiner must sit in the front passenger seat of the vehicle, as this is the best position from which to observe the candidate's performance and intervene in cases of emergency.


2.9.2 Before giving the go ahead to move off, the examiner should ensure that their seat, seatbelt and head restraint is adjusted correctly, to ensure safety and comfort. Examiners should also ensure they are sitting comfortably and in a stable position in order to support themselves in the event of sudden braking or an accident. Examiners are obliged to wear their seat belts.
2.9.3 The interior mirror fitted for the examiner's use should be adjusted so that the examiner has a clear view to the rear.
2.9.4 Before moving away, the candidate may check that the front passenger door is properly closed. This is usually done to show the examiner that they are aware of the safety precautions to take before moving off. Examiners should not in any way indicate that this precaution is other than a proper one for any driver to take. It is not a fault.
2.9.5 If an examiner would prefer the door not to be locked, they should unlock it and politely mention this to the candidate. The examiner should of course exercise ordinary commonsense responsibility to see that the door is properly closed.
2.9 Giving Instructions and Directions during the Test

2.9.1 Examiners should ensure their instructions are absolutely clear. Candidates must not be left in any doubt about the route to be taken. Directions should be given in good time, especially where marking of traffic lanes indicate an option, and more detailed directions only while the vehicle is stationary. At complex junctions, a request simply to turn right or left may not be enough to indicate the route clearly.


2.9.2 Candidates should not be given any grounds to complain of being flustered or uncertain.
2.9.3 Candidates should always be given the benefit of the doubt, and if necessary instructions and directions should be repeated more clearly. Any reference to landmarks should be clear and unequivocal.
2.9.4 Examiners must never give instructions that may breach any road signage, road markings or legal requirements.
2.11 Starting the Engine and Moving Off

2.11.1 Request candidate to move off when ready, to proceed on test route performing obligatory manoeuvres.


2.11.2 Before starting the engine, the candidate should ensure that the handbrake is applied and the gear lever/selector is in neutral / not engaged.
2.11.3 The examiner should observe whether the candidate first sees to the front, then to the rear, that the way is clear for pulling out, gives the appropriate signal if necessary, and moves away smoothly and safely. Wherever possible, ability to move off on a reasonably steep uphill gradient should be tested. If this is not possible, the examiner should be satisfied that the candidate understands how to let in the clutch while releasing the handbrake when starting uphill. A candidate starting on a gradient should be capable of paying attention to other traffic as well as moving their vehicle away without rollback and/or excessive engine revolutions. At some stage the test should include moving out at an angle from behind a stationary vehicle.
2.12 Marking of faults and drawing up of report

2.12.1 Faults are defined as follows: A driving fault is one, which in itself is not potentially dangerous. However, a candidate who habitually commits a driving fault in one aspect of driving throughout the test, demonstrating an inability to deal with certain situations, cannot be regarded as competent to pass the test, as that fault alone must be seen as potentially dangerous.


2.12.2 A grievous fault is one, which is potentially dangerous.
2.12.3 A perilous fault is one involving actual danger to the examiner, candidate, the general public or property (Note: If the fault has been assessed as perilous then this should be marked regardless of any action taken by the examiner).
2.12.4 A candidate will fail the test as a result of either one grievous fault or one perilous fault or an accumulation of 16 or more driving faults. Faults should be marked with an oblique stroke in the appropriate box.
2.12.5 Set exercises are assessed either as no fault, a driving fault, a grievous fault or a perilous fault.
2.12.6 A fault is best described as a deviation from the defined outcome. Examiners shall weigh the fault in regard to the context of the situation at the time and record it on the marking sheet at the earliest opportunity, whilst mindful of the need to avoid distracting the driver.
2.12.7 Examiners are required to complete all forms and reports in a clear and legible manner. After every test examiners are required to complete a brief written report on the reverse side of the DTR form. In the event of a failed test the report must cover the more serious or dangerous faults and be a factual record of what happened and where it happened. Fails as a result of an accumulation of 16 or more driving faults only, need to be written up in full. When the test is stopped for whatever reason, or when the examiner intervenes physically during the test, the report must include a detailed description of the reasons leading to this decision taken.
2.13 Concluding the Test and Debriefing

Examiners are to inform the candidate of the result of the test and explain any faults, particularly if they led to a failed test. A decision to fail should be conveyed sympathetically. On completion of the test, examiners are to politely ask candidate to sign DTR1 acknowledging receipt of test report, and provide a copy to the candidate. If candidates refuse to sign the DTR1, this should be indicated accordingly, and no copy given to the candidate.


Candidates who fail the test are naturally disappointed and may express dissatisfaction either with the test itself or with the manner in which it was conducted. This situation requires most careful handling. Complaints about driving tests sometimes originate from comments made by examiners either gratuitously or in repartee to candidates at the time of the test or later. Examiners must avoid commenting on motoring matters, driving or instructional techniques, or on any articles, books or illustrations dealing with driving or instructional techniques.
Apart from the oral explanation of faults to candidates at the end of a test, examiners must on no account discuss driving tests in general, or details of particular tests, with candidates or third parties; nor must they suggest to a third party that individual candidates would benefit from professional tuition.
2.14 Length of the test

The overall length of the test is approximately 40 minutes and the distance travelled must be sufficient to assess the skills and behaviour laid down in this Schedule. In no circumstances should the time spent driving on the road be less than 25 minutes. This does not include the reception of the applicant, the preparation of the vehicle, the technical check of the vehicle with a bearing on road safety, the special manoeuvres and the announcement of the outcome of the practical test.



3 Dangerous driving by a candidate

3.1 There will be occasions when a candidate's driving on test becomes so dangerous that the safety of the public and/or the examiner is jeopardized. In these circumstances an examiner should cautiously stop the test. The examiner should issue a statement of failure and tell the candidate that the test has been stopped before completion for reasons of safety, and that completion of the test would have made no difference to the decision. A detailed note of the circumstances should be made on the DTR1, and detailed in the report overleaf.


3.2 In cases where a collision occurs, irrespective of the amount of damage to the vehicle, the examiner should cautiously stop the test. The examiner should assess the situation, and if it is still safe to continue, it is then up to the vehicle owner and the candidate. Otherwise the test will be suspended for reasons of safety. A detailed note of the circumstances should be made on the DTR1, and detailed in the report overleaf. If it is clear that the candidate was not responsible for the collision, a continuation test will be given free of charge. All statutory procedures are to be taken into account in such incidents.
4 Interferences throughout test

The Regulations permit the candidate to be accompanied by a third party, as long as the third party does not communicate with the examiner or the candidate, or act in any way that may interfere with or influence the test procedure or outcome throughout the test. This may also be the Driving Instructor. Examiners will reserve the right to stop the test should the accompanying person interfere with the test, either verbally, or even visually/by body language. This should be recorded clearly and in detail on the test report. The candidate will have to reapply with a new test fee for another test.


5 Use of the candidate’s vehicle

Examiners must not drive candidates' vehicles. Strict observance of this is essential as there are many situations in which insurance cover for the examiner might not be effective.


6 Stopping Tests

Examiners are allowed to stop the tests in any of the following circumstances, and a written report is to be provided to the Senior Driving Examiner immediately.




  • Attempted bribery / Gifts / Offers of gifts from candidates or third parties

  • Dangerous driving by candidate

  • Accident

  • Interference by the accompanying person

  • Vehicle standards jeopardizing safety

  • Invalid or expired road licence

  • At the request of the candidate


7 Unlicensed Driving Instructors

In the normal course of their duties, driving examiners may note the driving schools and instructors who bring candidates and to know which cars they use. The re-appearance of an accompanying driver may give a driving examiner cause for suspicion. A driving examiner's suspicions may also be aroused if a consistently poor standard of candidate is brought forward by a particular driving school or instructor, or if they see instruction being given in a school car not displaying a learner permit.


Driving examiners must not involve themselves in enforcement and enquiry work. It is particularly important that they do not question candidates or accompanying drivers, or make any comments which may suggest that they have doubts about the legitimacy of any person who may have given driving instruction.
If examiners encounter anything in the course of their duties which lead them to suspect that an unlicensed instructor is at work in their area, they should inform their Senior Driving Examiner.
8 General Operational Issues
8.1 Officers of Transport Malta

Except for driving examiner staff with technical responsibility for the conduct of tests, no officers of the Agency, or anyone else, should accompany candidates unless they have first received specific authority from the Chief Officer or his Deputy. Non-operational personnel should be asked to withdraw if a candidate objects to their presence on test.


8.2 Candidate suspected of being under the influence of drink of drugs

Where an examiner has good reason to believe, either before or during the test, that a candidate is under the influence of drink or a drug so that it is likely to affect the control of the vehicle, they should inform the candidate that they appear to be ill and that, in fairness to them, the examiner feels unable to take or continue the test. The examiner will need to use considerable tact in announcing this decision, and must avoid making any reference to drink or drugs.


8.3 Candidate in advance stage of pregnancy

Occasionally candidates in an advanced stage of pregnancy present themselves for a test. Examiners should not ask the candidate whether they are pregnant, as this can lead to an embarrassing situation if the candidate is not. The onus of responsibility to ensure that they are medically safe to carry out all the requirements of the test, is the candidate's.


8.4 Sick Candidates

Where, either before or during the test, a candidate claims that they are sick, the Driving Examiner should terminate the test. Similarly, if the Driving Examiner considers that the candidate is sick and therefore unfit to take or continue the test, they should terminate it. In cases where the result of the test can be established by the Examiner, prior to the termination of the test, then the result should still be given.


8.5 Gifts or Offers of Gifts from Candidates or Third Parties

If a gift of any kind whatsoever is offered before, during or after a driving test, Examiners should inform candidates that their instructions require them to report the matter. If the offer is made during the course of the test, the test should be immediately terminated. A full written report of the circumstances should be sent to the Senior Manager immediately. In the event of criminal proceedings being taken against the candidate, it would be of considerable evidential value to produce in Court anything that had actually been handed to the examiner. An examiner should therefore forward any such gift with the report. The Senior Manager will refer such cases to the Chief Officer immediately who in turn will refer the case to the Police.




8.6 Use of Mobile Phone during Tests

Transport Malta has no objection to Driving Examiners taking their mobile phone on test. However, they must ensure they are switched off. Examiners must also ensure that any instructor/trainer or third party accompanying them on test switch off their mobile phone too, by asking the following: 'To avoid any distraction during the test, if you have a mobile phone, please switch it off.'


8.7 Assaults on Driving Examiners

All cases of physical assault should be reported immediately to the police and the Senior Driving Examiner by means of a full written report. If the examiner who was assaulted cannot make a report, the most senior examiner on duty should make it.


8.8 Variances

Given a significant number of tests, carried out from the same location, it is reasonable to compare individual driving examiner results. It is the responsibility of the Senior Driving Examiner and the Senior Manager to monitor and effectively deal with persistent unacceptable variances whilst ensuring that correct procedures are followed to rectify the issue.



Complaints Procedure
9 Within Transport Malta we strive to meet all our customer’s needs in regard to the service we provide. However, we recognize that sometimes we may fall short of an individual’s expectations. All complaints are treated with the utmost attention, and details will be registered at the office of the Senior Manager (Driver Training & Testing). An initial acknowledgement of receipt should be issued to the complainant within two working days with a follow up outcome as soon as practicable.

Appendix 1 – Safety Check Questions (Category B vehicles)
These are all “Show me, tell me” questions. This should be explained to the candidates, since candidates are not expected to actually do the checks being explained in the case of the tell me – therefore explain the difference clearly, and always give the benefit of the doubt and opportunity to correct themselves.
Combination 01

Q: Show me how you would check that the direction indicators are working.


A: Applying the indicators or hazard warning switch and check functioning of all indicators (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine).
Q: Tell me how you would check that the brakes are working before starting a journey.
A: Brakes should not feel spongy or slack. Brakes should be tested as you set off. Vehicle should not pull to one side.
Combination 02

Q: Show me where the windscreen washer reservoir is and tell me how you would check the windscreen washer level.


A: Identify reservoir and explain how to check level.
Q: Show me how you would check the brake lights are working on this car (I can assist you). If you need to switch the ignition on, please don't start the engine.
A: Operate brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows, garage doors, etc, or ask someone to help. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine).
Combination 03

Q: Show me and tell me how you would check that the power assisted steering is working before starting a journey.


A: If the steering becomes heavy the system may not be working properly. Before starting a journey two simple checks can be made. Gentle pressure on the steering wheel, maintained while the engine is started, should result in a slight but noticeable movement as the system begins to operate. Alternatively turning the steering wheel just after moving off will give an immediate indication that the power assistance is functioning.
Q: Tell me where you would find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this vehicle and how tyre pressures should be checked.
A: Manufacturer's guide, use a reliable pressure gauge, check and adjust pressures when tyres are cold, don't forget spare tyre, remember to refit valve caps.
Combination 04

Q: Open the bonnet and Show me where the windscreen washer reservoir is and tell me how you would check the windscreen washer level.


A: Identify the reservoir is and explain how to check the level.
Q: Show me how you would check the parking brake (handbrake) for excessive wear; make sure you keep safe control of the vehicle.
A: Apply footbrake firmly. Demonstrate by applying parking brake (handbrake) so that when it is fully applied it secures itself, and is not at the end of the working travel.
Combination 05

Q: Open the bonnet and show me where you would check the engine oil level and tell me how you would check that the engine has sufficient oil.


A: Identify dipstick / oil level indicator, describe check of oil level against the minimum / maximum markers.
Q: Tell me where you would find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this car and how tyre pressures should be checked.
A: Manufacturer's guide, use a reliable pressure gauge, check and adjust pressures when tyres are cold, don't forget spare tyre, remember to refit valve caps.
Combination 06

Q: Open the bonnet and show me where you would check the engine coolant level and tell me how you would check that the engine has the correct level.


A: Identify high/low level markings on header tank where fitted or radiator filler cap, and describe how to top up to correct level.
Q: Tell me how you make sure your head restraint is correctly adjusted so it provides the best protection in the event of a crash.
A: The head restraint should be adjusted so the rigid part of the head restraint is at least as high as the eye or top of the ears, and as close to the back of the head as is comfortable. Note that some restraints might not be adjustable; however the candidate must demonstrate that he/she understands that it is not adjustable.
Combination 07

Q: Open the bonnet and show me where the brake fluid reservoir is and tell me how you would check that you have a safe level of hydraulic brake fluid.


A: Identify reservoir, check level against high/low markings.
Q: Tell me how you would check the tyres to ensure that they have sufficient tread depth and that their general condition is safe to use on the road.
A: No cuts and bulges, 1.6mm of tread depth across the central 3/4 of the breadth of the tyre and around the entire outer circumference.
Combination 08

Q: Show me how you would check that the horn is working (off road only).


A: Check is carried out by using control (turn on ignition if necessary).
Q: Tell me how you would check the tyres to ensure that they have sufficient tread depth and that their general condition is safe to use on the road.
A: No cuts and bulges, 1.6mm of tread depth across the central 3/4 of the breadth of the tyre and around the entire outer circumference.
Combination 09

Q: Tell me how you would check that the brakes are working before starting a journey.


A: Brakes should not feel spongy or slack. Brakes should be tested as you set off. Vehicle should not pull to one side.
Q: Show me how you would clean the windscreen using the windscreen washer and wipers.
A: Operate control to wash and wipe windscreen (turn ignition on if necessary).
Combination 10

Q: Tell me how you would check that the headlights and tail lights are working (no need to exit vehicle)


A: Operate switch (turn on ignition if necessary), then explain that one would walk round vehicle.
Q: Show me how you would use the demister controls to clear all the windows effectively, including both front and rear screens.
A: Set all relevant controls including fan, temperature air direction / source and heated screen to clear windscreen and windows. Engine does not have to be started for this demonstration.
Combination 11

Q Show me how you would switch on the rear fog light(s) and explain when you would use it/them. (No need to exit vehicle).


A: Operate switch (turn on dipped headlights and ignition if necessary). Check warning light is on. Explain use.
Q: Tell me how you would know if there was a problem with your anti lock braking system.
A: Warning light should illuminate if there is a fault with the anti lock braking system.
Combination 12

Q: Show me how you would check that the brake lights are working on this car (I can assist you). If you need to switch the ignition on, please don't start the engine).


A: Operate brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows, garage doors, etc, or ask someone to help. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine).
Q: Tell me how you would check that the headlights & tail lights are working (no need to exit vehicle)
A: Operate switch (turn on ignition if necessary), then explain that one would walk round vehicle.
Combination 13

Q: Show me how you switch your headlight from dipped to main beam (also known as brights) and explain how you would know the main beam is on whilst inside the car.


A: Operate switch (with ignition or engine on if necessary), check with main beam warning light.
Q: Tell me how you would know if there was a problem with your anti lock braking system.
A: Warning light should illuminate if there is a fault with the anti lock braking system.

Appendix 2 – On the road maneuvers
1 Emergency stop (mandatory)

If an emergency has already arisen naturally during the test this special exercise is not required. In such cases the candidate should be told and this noted on the form. The emergency stop must not be given on a busy road or where danger to following or other traffic may arise. It is essential that examiners take direct rear observation to ensure that it is perfectly safe to carry out the exercise. They must not rely on the mirrors. If the exercise cannot be given within a reasonable time the candidate should be asked to pull up, care being taken to choose the right moment as the candidate will have been expecting the emergency stop signal and may react accordingly. They should then be advised that the exercise will be given later and that they will be warned again beforehand.


If a candidate asks whether they should give an arm signal, they should be told that the command to stop will be given only when it appears that no danger will arise as a result of a sudden stop, but that they should assume that an extreme emergency has arisen and demonstrate the action they would take in such a case.
Anti-lock braking systems (ABS) are being fitted to an increasing number of vehicles. Examiners should not enquire if a vehicle presented for a test is fitted with ABS. Most ABS systems require the clutch and footbrake to be depressed harshly at the same time to brake in an emergency situation. Therefore a fault should not be recorded purely for using this technique with a vehicle fitted with ABS on the emergency stop exercise. On the emergency stop exercise, under severe braking, tyre or other noise may be heard, this does not necessarily mean the wheels have locked and are skidding. Examiners should bear these points in mind when assessing the candidate's control during this exercise.
2 Angle start (mandatory)

Candidates should be asked to pull up on the left just before a parked vehicle. The examiner should ensure that there is sufficient room and vision to move off again at an angle whilst controlling the vehicle safely at slow speed.



Examiners should select one of the following maneuvers randomly, and in all cases, ensuring that they are adequate to the situation at hand.
3 Left-hand reverse

The candidate should be asked to pull up on the left just before a road on the left. They will then be asked to drive past it and stop, and reverse into the opening for some distance, keeping reasonably close to the left hand kerb.


4 Reversing straight

The candidate will be asked to pull up on the left. They will then be asked to continue reversing, keeping reasonably close to the left hand kerb until asked to stop.


5 Reverse parking (on road)

Candidates should be asked to pull up on the left well before a parked vehicle. They will be told that this is the reverse parking exercise and that they should pull up alongside the parked vehicle, then reverse and park reasonably close to and parallel to the kerb. The exercise should be completed within two car lengths.


OR
Reverse parking into a parking bay (off road car park)
Examiners should allow the candidate to reverse into a bay of their choice.

6 Turn in the Road

The examiner will ask the candidate to pull up on the left at a designated place. They will then ask the candidate to turn the vehicle around to face the opposite direction using forward and reverse gears.



Guidelines for the Conducting of Practical Tests – Category B Page of



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