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Thread: Unfairly failed driving test

  1. #51
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    www.gov.uk states:
    AMBER means 'Stop' at the stop line. You may go on only if the AMBER appears after you have crossed the stop line [or are so close to it that to pull up might cause an accident.]

    The last part of the rule, which I have enclosed in [ ], is the real problem. This part is open to individual interpretation. It leaves the driver to decide whether too close to stop, and a following driver to judge whether the car in front will stop, or continue on.
    It then raises the question about being required to have a safe stopping distance from the vehicle in front so that you can safely stop at all times, which means that the car stopping when very close to the line SHOULD NOT result in an accident.

    From the point of view of the learner-driver under examination, this leaves him in an awful situation. He will be adhering as close as possible to the letter of the law, so it is almost certain that he will stop at the AMBER if it is at all possible to do so before crossing the stop line.
    On the other hand, the examiner may well be calculating a possible accident scenario and, if a vehicle was following, very possibly ignore the "follow at a safe distance" rule, and instead apply a 'fault' decision based on that part of the rule in [ ].

    Not everyone would agree with me, but I have always felt that the GREEN light should start flashing for about 5 seconds before changing to AMBER. This would give drivers the opportunity to commence slowing down in the expectancy of not reaching the stop line before the AMBER signal shows. It would also serve as a warning to following drivers that they were about to be required to stop.

  2. #52
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    It is possible to predict when the lights are going to change. By observing the traffic lights facing the other roads on the junction, you can often see them changing to red for those other roads. So it is easy for some drivers to start moving before their light has changed to green.

  3. #53
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    The problem with this is that, as usual, we only have the OP's description of events. It would be very annoying, at the very least, if a driver in front of you looks to be going through the lights, and then changes their mind at the last second and brakes sharply. Naturally, as experienced drivers we would stop in time, but if the following driver was too close or not alert, there would likely be a collision.

    I can only imagine that the examiner (and note the ten minors) thought that the OP was not fully in control.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santa View Post
    ....... It would be very annoying, at the very least, if a driver in front of you looks to be going through the lights, and then changes their mind at the last second and brakes sharply. Naturally, as experienced drivers we would stop in time, but if the following driver was too close or not alert, there would likely be a collision.
    There are two points about this observation.
    1. What the "apparent intention" are of the driver in front would only be conjecture on the part of the following driver.
    2. The situation is one where a necessity to stop is very likely, and a following driver should (a) be preparing for that probability, and (2) be driving at a distance from the vehicle in front so as to be able to stop safely. Any collision would be the fault of the following driver for failing to observe the correct procedure - being too close or not alert are absolutely no excuse.
    I can only imagine that the examiner (and note the ten minors) thought that the OP was not fully in control.
    This is a possibility, of course, although that in itself does not remove the 'to stop or continue on' dilemma.
    I think we have all been in that short strip of 'no mans' land' when approaching an amber light, where a degree of hoping that the right decision was made.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowball View Post
    I think we have all been in that short strip of 'no mans' land' when approaching an amber light, where a degree of hoping that the right decision was made.
    When I was driving a truck, I used to pick some point on the approach after which I was going on through, even if the lights changed. I am not saying that I got it right every time, but, like most things, practice and experience makes you better.

    There are a lot of occasions in driving where a fraction of a second makes the difference between a right decision and a wrong one, and it would be a fool who said that he got it right every time. A driving examiner has to decide if the candidate makes enough good decisions to be allowed the freedom of the road. In the OP's case, I suspect, from the very limited information, that the examiner was correct. If, for example, the traffic light incident had been an isolated moment in an otherwise excellent drive, I may not have been a fail.

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santa View Post
    .........There are a lot of occasions in driving where a fraction of a second makes the difference between a right decision and a wrong one, and it would be a fool who said that he got it right every time.........
    Can agree with you in principle, Santa, but I think that anyone on top of his/her driving would be exercising enough degree of care such that any "getting it wrong" would be so infinitesimally short of getting it right that a sufficient margin of safety was still maintained. I say this because I regularly see drivers go through the amber light when they could easily have stopped, to the point that RED appears when they have barely passed the stop line, and still they get away with it. Only a few days ago, as I was coming to a smooth braking stop for the amber light, two cars from further back in the outer lane shot straight through. It only needed an 'amber-gambler coming from their right......... This particular gyratory junction is frequently littered with debris from car collisions, and the presence of traffic light cameras seems not to be much of a deterrent.

  7. #57
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    Its the approach aswell, if lights have been on green for a while then slow down and be ready to stop, not just slam on the brakes when they change.
    I've gone through on amber a couple of times, once was when a lorry was following closely and even tho i had time to stop they wouldnt have x

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