I’m an Irish Driving Instructor so people fail their test

An Irish driving instructor has revealed the most common reasons why people fail their driving test.

Wexford instructor Dane Tyghe said the reasons varied, from learners not being fully prepared to small mistakes like going over a stop sign, which can result in you failing your test.

Wexford instructor Dane Tyghe shared the reasons why people fail their driving tests


Wexford instructor Dane Tyghe shared the reasons why people fail their driving testsCredit: Facebook
Dane says many people fail because they didn't fully prepare for the test (stock image)


Dane says many people fail because they didn’t fully prepare for the test (stock image)Credit: Alamy

Dane became a driving instructor in 2008 but now mainly focuses on posting YouTube videos to help people drive.

His YouTube channel has already amassed over 50,000 subscribers.

But he’s still a fully qualified ADI instructor and does a few hours a week to stay up to date for the driving test.

And when he talks about why people usually fail the test, he says it has to do with preparation, first.

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He said that in his experience there are roughly three categories of learner drivers.

Dane told the Irish Sun: “There’s a category of people who are probably not the worst drivers, they’re kind of mediocre.

“They can drive, but they don’t take enough time and experience.

“Well, it may not all be their fault because of the challenges that come with driving, but people who rush into the exam when they’re not ready may not have gotten the right amount of instruction.”

Most read in The Irish Sun

He added: “I’m hearing from people via email and even from some of my own clients talking about the six month rule and saying, ‘I got my approval in June now, so in December I can take my test. ‘

“And I suppose technically they can, but my idea would be to try and build up your knowledge and road experience before worrying about a test.”

The second category of learner drivers are those who are “fairly good” but focus too much on the test tracks when practicing.

Dane says these learners have a very narrow focus and therefore run the risk of getting nervous during the test if they find themselves on an unfamiliar path.

He said: “That’s why I have a little saying called ‘Drive safe for life, not just the driving test’.

“So when I’m teaching someone to drive, I have a checklist based on how to be a good driver, not on how to pass the test.


“In short, if you are a good, experienced driver and have good experience on different types of roads, you will probably be less nervous when you find yourself on an unfamiliar path in your driving test.”

And the third category, according to Dane, would be those who are very good drivers but are just unlucky on the test day.

The instructor urges these learners to reschedule their test as soon as possible and they will “get it next time”.

As for specific errors, Dane says a lot of people get flagged for approaching speed bumps too fast and driving over them too hard.

He explained: “I just find that when people approach speed bumps, they either slow down too quickly, or they don’t slow down enough and go a little too hard over the ramps.


“You have to plan ahead so the ramps look a bit big, are they in the middle of the street, can you span the left side?”

Another area where people get flagged up, Dane says, is making right turns at traffic lights.

According to the road traffic regulations, you must stop at a red traffic light.

However, if the light turns green, you must taxi to the middle of the intersection or box and wait for a safe gap to turn right there.

Dane said: “But even if the traffic light turns yellow and red, you can’t be left stranded in the middle of the junction.

“A lot of people are afraid of breaking the red light. They don’t actually refract the red light, because what color was the light when you rolled in the middle? It was green, so just finish the turn you started at the green light.”


A simple mistake many learner drivers make is their positioning on the road.

Dane says that most of the time you need to stay left of center and plan ahead by looking further out.

But if the street is very narrow, you should stay more central.

He added: “Positioning errors happen, it’s normal, but it can result in people not diagnosing the road ahead and understanding that there are different types of positioning.”


And Dane also emphasized that observing almost never involves looking in the mirror.

He explained that a lot of people get devalued for not looking at the street.

The instructor told us: “Observation is more about moving your head than your eyes and by that I mean looking left and right at a T-junction and seeing the roundabout on approach.

“So when you’re approaching a roundabout, don’t look right when you’re on the line.

“You have to look to the right about 20 to 40 meters from the line.”

And he added that observations when changing lanes are also extremely important.

Dane says while you should also look over your shoulder after the mirror check, it’s important to ONLY take a look and not wait too long without looking ahead.


According to him, many people also fail their tests because of danger.

He explained: “Sometimes the tester will give you a hazard score if they’re having trouble finding a category to put them in, like parked cars or roadworks.

“It’s a big one because it covers such a wide area.

“And again it all boils down to not seeing the way forward and not planning ahead. It could be a lack of confidence or a lack of experience.”


It is also extremely important that learner drivers fully prepare for reversing around the corner and turning point.

Dane, who lives in the town of Wexford, says it’s all about planning ahead for reversing as all corners are different, some sharper than others.

He said: “The tester will make you park in front of the corner so you have the opportunity to watch it as you drive past it.

“And when it comes to reversing and turning, there is one skill that is absolutely, utterly essential and that is clutch mastery.

“Doing the opposite and turning slowly is so important because it gives you time to analyze and think.

“If you accidentally speed, other mistakes creep in, like observation or maybe clipping the curb.”


Finally, running over a stop sign during your driving test is a big problem as it can mean instant failure depending on the circumstances.

Motorists must come to a full stop at the sign or line, even if the intersection is quiet and they can see that there is no oncoming traffic.

And Dane says if there’s no sign and the line on the road is very worn, it’s best to pull over all the way.

He explained that if it’s a stop line and you stop completely, that’s the right thing to do.

But if it’s a yield sign, you may get flagged on the progression, which is better than failing your test for running a stop line.

Other small mistakes riders make include coasting the clutch and not shifting gears quickly enough.

Dane says gear changes are crucial these days as examiners will be looking at eco-driving.

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He explained: “That means driving sparingly, not letting the engine make too much noise, braking slowly, lower emissions, not revving the car too much, taking care of it and having it serviced regularly.

“If you can show the tester that you are a good eco-driver, that will reflect well on you.” I’m an Irish Driving Instructor so people fail their test

Fry Electronics Team

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