I couldn’t believe it. After more than three decades of legal, licensed driving, I failed my driving test. It was a little humbling, to say the least.
Some time ago, I suffered a traumatic brain injury. Not to worry, I have fully recovered, but thank you for your concern just the same. The doctor who treated me made the suggestion that, in today’s litigious society, I should take a driving test so that I could be officially recertified by the DMV. That way, if I were to be involved in an accident in the future, I would never have to face an attorney asking the question in court, “Sir, isn’t it true that in the year 20xx, you suffered a significant head injury?” While the doctor’s suggestion seemed a little far-fetched, I decided to take him up on his advice.
Behind the Wheel with the Examiner
As the trooper entered the car, I was anxious. Not nervous for the test, simply anxious to get the road to test over with after having spent so much time inside the DMV waiting. After cruising through the obligatory parallel parking test, we took to the road. I listened to her instructions, and we chatted amiably as though we were headed out for coffee. Our light conversation continued as she led me through a pleasant drive of intersections and business and residential areas surrounding the testing site. At the end of the test, I was shocked as she calmly explained that I had failed the test. How in the world had this happened?
False Confidence That Leads to Failure
Most people consider themselves to be good drivers, but where is the standard of comparison? After all, how many drivers characterize themselves as being terrible? I had just presumed that the trooper would take into consideration my nearly 40 years of relatively event free driving and would rubberstamp my approval. It turns out, as it should have been, her decision was based solely on the skills and techniques I displayed during our drive together. It was a single mistake, born out of habit, which led to my failure.
Breaking the law, in my case speeding, will result in an automatic failure of a driving test. In my many years of driving, I had navigated through many neighborhoods, most of them with a speed limit of 30 mph. However, the speed limit in the neighborhood through which she took me was only 20 mph, and I had missed the sign.
Studies show that even experienced drivers make an average of 2 ½ mistakes for every mile they drive. Unfortunately, my mistake occurred with an examiner in the car. After receiving the results of my test, I was simultaneously embarrassed and angry with myself. I was also frustrated as my little mistake had earned me the right to sit through the waiting process all over again the next day.
Don’t Take Driving for Granted
No matter if you are taking a driving test, commuting to work, running errands or just out for pleasure, paying close attention keeps everyone safe. Don’t let years of experience behind the wheel draw you into complacency. By driving every day with the level of focus necessary to pass a driving test, you can keep yourself and others safe.
If you have managed to make one of your 2 ½ mistakes per mile in full view of a police officer and now find yourself with a ticket, dismiss it easily with a course from ApprovedCourse.com.