Hazard Perception Test
The hazard perception test is part of the United Kingdom driving test. The test is intended to check a candidate’s ability to detect developing situations that require a motorist to take some action, such as changing speed or direction.
The hazard perception test is administered as part of the theory test and is taken immediately after the multiple-choice questions. Learner drivers can sit the test from the age of 17. Those on the higher rate component of Disability Living Allowance are able to take the test at 16.
For the purposes of the test, a "developing hazard" is something that requires a motorist to change speed and / or direction. This includes cars entering traffic from an adjoining road, pedestrians crossing the road, cyclists entering the motorist’s lane while manoeuvring around a stopped vehicle and a preceding car stopping suddenly.
The test consists of video clips that contain one, or for one of the clips two, hazards. The candidate watches the video clip and, using the mouse, clicks to flag an incident as she or he sees it develop. On the clip with two incidents, the candidate must flag both.
The earlier a candidate notices a developing hazard and make a response, the higher the score. The highest score for each hazard is 5 points.
The test instructions are to respond once to each hazard and warns that multiple clicks will result in a zero score. However, if a candidate flags a hazard as she or he sees it develop but before the scoring period as defined by the test’s designers has opened, zero points will be registered. For this reason, one guide recommends clicking 4 or 5 times during the hazard to ensure a response is registered within the scoring period. The government revealed in an FOI request that 299 out of 515 complaints received about the test during 2009-2011 related to scoring.
After completing the test, the candidate receives a paper printout showing grades for both the multiple-choice questions and the hazard perception test. The candidate must pass both tests to continue to the practical test; if he or she fails either part, both must be taken again. The pass mark for cars is 44 of 75, 57 of 75 for approved driving instructors and 67 of 100 for lorry drivers.
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