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Notes on the Driving Fault Marking Guidelines

Observations


An applicant should take proper observations as required before;- moving off, overtaking, changing lane, cross-junctions, roundabouts, turning right, and turning left, or a fault may be recorded for 'Observations' as appropriate.

Examples of incorrect 'Observation' faults include:

  1. Not looking around when moving off at a sharp angle, i.e. not checking the 'blind' spot.
  2. Not looking around when moving off at a shallow angle when the wing mirror is inadequate or incorrectly adjusted.
  3. Not taking adequate observations before and while overtaking.
  4. Not taking adequate observations before and while changing lane to the left or right, or where lanes merge into one another.
  5. Not taking adequate observations at cross-junctions.
  6. Not taking adequate observations before and at roundabouts.
  7. Not taking adequate observations before and while turning right.
  8. Not taking adequate observations before and while turning left.
  9. Where an applicant turns right, (or is beckoned to turn right) in front of an incoming vehicle, a check should be made of the 'inside' of the oncoming vehicle before completing the turn.
  10. Where an applicant turns right in front of an oncoming vehicle without checking the road directly ahead and does not see the vehicle.
  11. where an applicant makes a severe 'swan-neck' while turning right, and does not take observations to the side before completing the turn.
  12. Not taking adequate observations when being the first vehicle to move off from traffic lights at a blind junction.
  13. Not taking adequate observations to the left when turning right, and in possession of a junction.
  14. Not taking adequate observations when driving out from a parking space.

Observation faults changing lane on a roundabout are recorded opposite 'Observations at Roundabouts' on the Report Sheet.

In some situations such as moving off, overtaking, changing lane etc., observations may be taken by use of the mirrors, and this is acceptable where it is done competently and effectively.

In a case where an applicant does see another road user but deliberately impedes or restricts passage, a fault should be recorded for 'Right of Way' as appropriate, and not for 'Observation' in this case.

Where visibility is severely restricted due to condensation, a fault may be recorded for 'Observations' or 'React' as appropriate (see also 'Secondary Controls').