G1 – Exit Road Test

G1 – Exit Road Test

1. Start

Unable to Locate / Adjust / Operate Safety Devices

Anyone who wants to obtain a driver’s license should know where the safety devices are and how to use them. These devices include:

  1. Windshield wiper controls
  2. Horn
  3. Lights and dimmer controls
  4. Turn signal controls
  5. Ignition switch
  6. Defroster button
  7. Sun visors

In the test, the examiner will test the applicant on these devices to ensure that the new driver knows how to use them. Even though most examiners consider an inability to find and operate these controls to be a minor error, it might be a sign that the learner is also missing knowledge in other areas.

Fails to observe – Uses Mirror Only

A shoulder check is normally necessary to ensure a safe opportunity before changing lanes. Turning the head to get a better view is normally necessary to look for other traffic that might conflict with the driver’s intended moves. Checking in the mirrors is useful, but only as an additional precaution. At this stage of the test, the examiner should not rush the applicant into heavy traffic but should rather let him or her decide when it is safe to go.

Fails to Signal / Improper Signal

According to the Highway Traffic Act, drivers must signal at every direction change where other traffic may be affected by the movement.

Normally, it is best to keep both hands on the wheel and to use the vehicle’s electric turn signals rather than hand signals. In some cases, however, it may be difficult for drivers coming up from behind to see an electric signal, such as when a driver is preparing to leave a parking spot. In that case, a hand signal is a better way to provide the information that other drivers need.

Traffic conditions at the time will determine when the driver should discontinue the hand signal. Drivers should also remember that signals notify other road users of the driver’s intentions but are not connected with the right-of-way on the road. The signaller should be sure to wait until it is safe before following through on any intention.

Incorrect Use Of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears / Steering

Drivers should be sure to coordinate their minds with the actions of their hands and feet for the smoothest and most accurate method of operating these devices. If a license applicant is unable to operate these devices while driving, the examiner will record that as an error.

One of the aspects that the examiner will look for during the test is smooth steering with the hands in the right position. This requires the driver to have both hands on the steering wheel. The exact position depends on which advice the driver follows. Imagining the wheel as a clock face, some experts recommend placing the hands at the 10 and 2 positions, while others recommend 9 and 3, 11 and 5 or 8 and 4. Any of these positions is acceptable on the test, as long as the applicant grips the wheel with one hand on each side with at least 1/3 of the wheel between the two hands. If the applicant’s hands are too close together or are holding onto the wheel spokes, or if only one hand is on the wheel, the examiner will count that as an error.

2. Backing

Fails to Look Around / to Rear Before / While Backing – Mirror only

While backing up, applicants are required to look behind and in several other directions repeatedly to meet the requirements for this maneuver. While the applicant is performing this maneuver, the examiner should also watch for traffic to assess how the applicant should respond to road conditions.

Turnabout: Control / Steering Method / Observation / Vehicle Position

This maneuver generally happens only in special testing areas off the main streets. This portion of the examination tests the applicant’s ability to turn a vehicle when limited space is available. Drivers generally refer to this maneuver as either a broken U-turn or a 3-point turn.

Normally, the examiner will ask the applicant to stop the vehicle in a place with the right conditions for this maneuver and then ask for the driver to turn the vehicle around. The applicant should then be able to complete the maneuver without further directions.

Incorrect Use of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears / Steering

The techniques necessary for parking also apply to the procedures for backing.

3. Driving Along

Follows or Passes too Closely / Cuts in too Soon

Applicants should never follow other vehicles too closely in traffic. The exact distance depends on a variety of factors, and this factor is often difficult to assess.

The principle of following distance also applies to the distance from other vehicles, parked or moving, as well as pedestrians or bicycles. Cutting too closely in front of other vehicles after passing them is also included in this principle.

A common practice among driver’s license applicants is to drive at a speed below the posted limit and frequently also below the speed of the traffic flow.

When that is the case, the driver should be sure to stay out of the passing lane, as other drivers will then be forced either to slow down or to pass on the right. In addition, drivers should be sure not to straddle two lanes or to stray over the centre line or to drive left of the centre on a road without lane markings.

Improper Choice of Lane / Straddles Lane / Unmarked Roadway

Slower-moving traffic, as a basic rule, should stay as close as possible to the righthand side of the highway.

Fails to Check Blind Spot / Observe Properly

The examiner should watch all traffic whenever the vehicle is in motion to assess how it might affect the applicant’s progress. Some of the aspects to check for are any apparent neglect to watch the movement of other vehicles and to take into consideration how the applicant’s choices might conflict with the movement of other vehicles.

Some aspects to watch for are the applicant:

  1. Frequently glancing briefly in the rear-view mirror.
  2. Using the mirror to assess if other traffic is close behind or about to pass.
  3. Quickly checking over shoulder as an extra precaution before changing lanes. Although modern cars allow for wide vision, an additional check is a safe driving practice.

Lane Change Signal: Wrong / Early / Late / Not Given / Not Cancelled

The Highway Traffic Act requires drivers to signal only when other drivers are directly affected, but signalling is a good idea at any change of direction. Drivers must always remember that signals are for informing other drivers of an intention to move; signalling does not equal the right-of-way. Drivers must wait for a safe moment to complete the movement without causing inconvenience to other road users. The applicant should be able to signal all changes of direction with the proper instructions.

Right of Way Observance: Pedestrian / Self / Other Vehicles

The Highway Traffic Act describes right-of-way rules for the road. Applicants generally tend to be excessively cautious on the road, stopping unnecessarily or failing to recognize when other drivers yield the right-of-way to them. When these drivers lack either the knowledge or understanding of this fundamental rule, they may fail to yield to others or to use caution.

Fails to Use Caution or Obey: Pedestrian Cross-Over / School Crossing / Emergency Vehicle

Modern roads are full of traffic, often moving at high speeds. These factors have made it necessary for road designers to provide spots for pedestrians to cross the road safely. These pedestrian crossovers, which may be either at an intersection or anywhere between intersections, are indicated by lines painted on the pavement and by signs at the sides or above the road.

Drivers can become concerned over the behaviour of pedestrians at these crossovers, as it may sometimes seem irrational. However, drivers should remember that it can be difficult for pedestrians to assess the speed of an approaching vehicle, and they can easily misjudge the amount of time they have for crossing the road. Normally, the responsibility for ensuring the safety of pedestrians rests with the drivers, who should exercise care as they approach these crossovers.  

Traffic violations for license applicants include:

  1. Failing to allow a pedestrian sufficient space at a crossover
  2. Passing a vehicle that has stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross
  3. Passing another vehicle within 30 metres (100 feet) on approaching a crossover, whether or not it is occupied.

Many municipalities today use school crossing areas, together with school crossing guards. Under the Highway Traffic Act, school crossing guards are authorized are authorized to stop traffic to allow children to cross the street safely. Naturally, each driver is responsible to use extreme caution in areas where children are crossing or where they are likely to be, such as school zones or school bus loading zones.

When an emergency vehicle is approaching, drivers are required to allow safe and clear space to allow the vehicle through. The Highway Traffic Act requires drivers, when one of these vehicles is approaching, to pull over to an available curb as soon as possible, to stop and to remain in position until after the emergency vehicle has passed.

Speed: Too Fast / Too Slow for Conditions / Impedes Traffic

Good drivers should be ready to adjust their speed for any conditions they encounter, including weather, road surface and volume of traffic. Driving too slowly can impede other traffic, while exceeding the speed at which other traffic is moving can also be problematic.

Incorrect Use Of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears / Steering / Safety Devices

This maneuver tests the applicant’s ability to use the controls without weaving from one lane to another. If braking is necessary, it should be smooth, without any abrupt stops.

The applicant should know the proper time to use safety devices such as defrosters or windshield wipers and be able to activate these devices when necessary.

4. Intersections / R. R. Crossing

Fails to Observe Properly / Controlled / Uncontrolled Intersection

In this section, a capital “R” symbolizes errors at railway crossings. Errors at these intersections can have very serious consequences, and so mistakes are not considered minor at intersections with poor visibility due to the landscape, buildings or other factors. In these situations, applicants should always adjust their speed to be able to watch for danger. Where the sight lines allow, license applicants should first look left, then right and left again to ensure that the way is safe.   

Fails to Obey Signs or Signals / Pavement Markings

This segment includes any kind of sign, such as highway signs, fixed notices or other railway crossing signs and handheld signs used by school crossing guards or monitors. “Signs” can include any automatic or manual traffic signal, such as flashing yellow, red or green lights at an intersection or railway crossing, as well as the signals of a police officer manually controlling traffic. Drivers should remember that the signals themselves are not effective in providing safety on the road unless road users obey their instructions.

For railway crossings, the Highway Traffic Act requires drivers to stop a minimum of 5 metres (15 feet) from the nearest rail when signals or a handheld flag warn that a train is approaching. After stopping, drivers are allowed to proceed when it is safe.

At intersections, arrows painted on the roadways are often used to identify turning lanes and to guide drivers to the best position for making the turn. Good drivers should look for these lane markings and be sure to obey them.

Late in Slowing / Stopping / Slows too soon

Intersections are potentially one of the most hazardous areas of the road, with the possibility of conflict with other vehicles. Because of this, drivers must remember to approach intersections at speeds that suit the conditions and that allow time to see and respond to any issues. Any obstruction in the line of sight can be dangerous, and drivers should take extra precautions in these cases. As no two situations are exactly the same, no specific speed can fit each intersection.

Far too often, drivers approach intersections at high speeds that cause confusion for others, who must then take defensive action to avoid an accident. To avoid this problem, when it is necessary to reduce speeds, the pace of the vehicle should be lowest just before the first crosswalk. Drivers should be able to stop if necessary for pedestrians who want to cross or for cross traffic to flow unimpeded. This does not mean that drivers should necessarily reduce their speed or stop prematurely so that they impede the normal flow of traffic. Their speed and driving should be appropriate for the conditions.     

Normally, drivers should release the accelerator as they approach the intersection but keep one foot on or poised over the brake pedal to prepare for a stop in case it becomes necessary.

Stopping Position: Too Soon or Blocks Crosswalk / Intersection

Crosswalks should be kept clear and available for pedestrians to use. The Highway Traffic Act mandates the proper stopping positions in situations where traffic lights and stop signs are present, as explained in the Driver’s Handbook. These positions include:

  1. In front of a clearly marked stop line; or
  2. At the edge of a crosswalk; or
  3. The point before entering the through street or highway.

The examiner will take note of any neglect of these requirements.

The examiner will not record a fault if the applicant blocks a crosswalk due to traffic conditions after first stopping correctly and then edging forward cautiously.   

Drivers block intersections for many potential reasons. Sometimes, this happens because of the driver’s lack of competence or foresight, but sometimes it is due to another driver’s mistakes or lack of ability. As always, the examiner will take these kinds of circumstances into consideration while scoring the test.

Right-of-Way Observance: Pedestrian / Self / Other Vehicle

The rules regarding right-of-way at an intersection are established in the Highway Traffic Act, which states that when two vehicles approach an uncontrolled intersection simultaneously, the driver coming from the left is required to yield to the driver coming from the right. However, a stop sign or yield sign at one or more roads at an intersection supersedes the right-of-way rule and requires the drivers facing those signs to stop or to yield the right-of-way to other drivers.

Applicants can frequently be overcautious with regard to the right-of-way, stopping unnecessarily and failing to recognize their own right-of-way. Often, this can prevent traffic from flowing normally. Sometimes, however, failing to understand this rule can cause drivers to neglect to yield or to exercise caution.

5. Turns

Signalling: Wrong / Early / Late / Not Given / Not Cancelled

This item can cover two different issues on multi-lane streets or highways. Sometimes, drivers use a signal to indicate both a lane change and a turn. Although the position of a vehicle might clearly indicate the driver’s intentions to anyone with experience in navigating roadways, it is impossible to be certain of another road user’s level of expertise. The applicant must give the correct signal, with a clear intention, visible and given in ample time for other road users to respond if they are affected by the intended action. Using a signal light does not give the driver precedence over other road users. Once the turn is complete, the driver must also ensure that the signal is cancelled to avoid confusing other drivers.   

Fails to Get into Proper Position / Lane / Late into Lane / Late into Position

On multi-lane streets, the applicant must select the correct lane or position for turning. These lanes might be marked with painted arrows or written instructions on the pavement indicating that the lane is reserved for turning vehicles. Overhead signs or lights may also indicate turning lanes. During the test, the examiner will assess traffic conditions and issue clear instructions to allow the applicant to respond correctly and at the right time. In the case of an unexpectedly hazardous situation, the examiner should respond by revising the instructions if necessary.

Right of Way observance: Pedestrian / Self / Position / Other Vehicles

All of these right-of-way rules apply to turning vehicles, but this type of maneuver also involves additional considerations.

Normally, vehicles that are turning must yield to ones that are going straight ahead. Flashing green lights or arrows coming before or after the main phase of the light often serve as traffic signals for left turns. While the signal light is flashing, the main lanes of traffic travelling in the opposite direction are stopped at red lights. At the same time, traffic making similar turns may have green arrows.

Besides vehicles on the road, pedestrians are another factor for drivers to consider in cities and towns, especially before entering or leaving intersections. One common mistake that drivers make is to attempt to begin turning left before the way is clear of traffic. Often, traffic congestion results when drivers must stop to allow pedestrians to cross the street. While that is happening, the vehicle may be obstructing one or more lanes of traffic. This can be frustrating for other road users, and examiners are likely to mark it as a fault.   

When making left turns, drivers also frequently make the mistake of entering the intersection and pulling far enough ahead that they block one lane of opposing traffic, forcing the drivers to stop. On multi-lane streets, this behaviour can put the driver and others in serious danger as visibility from the right, in the direction of the opposing traffic, is obstructed.

Sometimes, the turning vehicle may be invisible to other drivers. If it is unsafe to move forward, the driver may have to wait until the signal light changes so that the flow of traffic comes from the other direction. When that happens, the waiting drivers are in the relatively dangerous situation of obstructing traffic as they clear the intersection. Going from a one-way street to another one-way, drivers are permitted to turn on a red light, as long as they first stop, and they do not impede pedestrians or other traffic. On a test, the examiner should make a note on the score sheet if the applicant does not follow this procedure.

Turns Too Wide – Enters Wrong Lane

When turning at intersections, applicants must try as much as possible to follow the correct path. That way, they will avoid interfering with other traffic. Right turns are relatively simple, and applicants should start by entering the righthand lane as they approach the intersection. Before reaching the first edge of the crosswalk at the intersection, the vehicle should be travelling slowly enough that the applicant can easily stop if necessary to allow pedestrians or cross traffic to pass by safely.

While turning, the vehicle should be as close as possible to the righthand side, both before and after the turn. However, parked vehicles close to the intersection may sometimes make it impossible for drivers to stay close to the right. In this case, the examiner should make allowances for the driver. If a bus has stopped in the right lane to pick up or drop off passengers, it is dangerous and often illegal to pull in front of the bus to turn. Also, swinging out to the left before turning right may confuse drivers into attempting to pass on the right side.

When turning left, the applicant must consider the width of the intersection, including the needs of pedestrians and cross traffic. Yielding to through traffic coming the opposite direction is necessary except at unusually complicated intersections, where the correct procedure is to:  

  1. Approach from a position near and to the right of the centre line
  2. Proceed straight out into the intersection to a point where the front of the vehicle is about 4.5 metres (15 feet) from the middle of the intersection
  3. Turn the steering wheel to the left

Using this method, the applicant should be able to complete a safe turn near and to the right of the centre line of the street that the driver is entering. After straightening the vehicle out, the driver should check the mirror, perform a shoulder check, signal and move as far as possible to the right if the lane is free of traffic and parked cars.

Wide turns usually follow after:

  1. A vehicle approaches too far to the right of center-line or from an incorrect lane
  2. A vehicle moves too far ahead into the intersection before turning, and
  3. Applicants fail to turn the steering wheel when necessary

Excessive speed is often a factor in wide turns. Also, these types of turns are common for drivers accustomed to large commercial vehicles.

Cuts Corners – Enters Wrong Lane

The same factors that affect wide turns also apply to entering the wrong lane. If applicant use the turning method outlined here, they should have no difficulty in avoiding cutting corners. Usually, cutting corners happens when:

  1. The vehicle crosses over the centre line while approaching for a left turn,
  2. The driver fails to pull far enough ahead for wide turns,
  3. Drivers turn the steering wheel too early or too quickly for the turn, or
  4. Drivers attempt to rush across the road ahead of opposing traffic.

Note: Turning from or to a one-way street requires different procedures. For turning left from a one-way to another one-way street, the driver should move close to the left-hand curb. The same applies to turning from a one-way to a two-way street. The procedure is to check for cross traffic and then to drive straight into the intersection to a point about 4.5 metres (15 feet) before the centre line. The driver should then begin to turn to the left, thus making it possible to complete the turn near and to the right of the centre line. In turning left from a two-way street to a one-way, the vehicle should be near and on the right side of the centre line. The applicant should turn left immediately on coming to the travelled portion of the street and complete the turn, if possible, close to the left side of the street.

Steering: Method / Control / Recovery

Good steering methods are especially important on turns. Most experts recommend the hand-over-hand method for turning the steering wheel, but any method can work if it is smooth and controlled. Normally, examiners deduct marks when applicants use their palms on the steering wheel or use the wheel spokes for holding or turning the wheel. After the turn, a common method of returning the steering wheel to its original position is to relax the grip on the wheel while letting it slide through the hands to the correct position for going straight ahead. In vehicles without power steering, the applicant must turn the wheel back to its original position to straighten the vehicle out after a turn. If the applicant oversteers from habit and cannot recover smoothly from a turn, this indicates a major error. The examiner will be able to see through multiple attempts and the circumstances of the road if the applicant has a satisfactory level of control over the wheel.

Speed: Too Fast / Too Slow / Enter / Leave / Impedes

Speed is an essential factor in making turns safely. The process of turning requires the driver to co-ordinate the speed and steering to achieve the correct turning arc. Applicants who lack the steering skills to make a correct turn may overcompensate by driving too slowly, but it is important not to drive either so slowly as to impede traffic or in excess of the normal pace of traffic. Overconfidence or misjudgement could also cause drivers to enter or leave a turn much too quickly. In each of these cases, the examiner will consider the circumstances in assigning a score.

Incorrect use of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears

According to traffic engineers, the average driver crossing or turning at a busy intersection must assess and deal with over 100 potential points of conflict. Thus, it is logical that drivers should deal with such matters as changing gears, signalling and adjusting speed before entering the intersection so that they cay pay attention instead to the points of conflict in the intersection.

The examiner will note actions such as braking or changing gears too late, regardless of whether or not the driver could more easily have performed these actions earlier or later. A stalled engine or excessive acceleration will result in an additional score, while making allowances for all traffic conditions before and during the turns.

6. Parking

Fails to Observe – Uses Mirror Only / Backing / Leaving

In this section of the test, drivers are required to show only a reasonable amount of skill in maneuvering the vehicle into a limited space. For parallel parking, the examiner should select a space longer than the normal length at a parking metre. The important point is that the applicant knows what to do, rather than the precise measurements at the end. To complete this section properly, applicants must look repeatedly in several directions to meet the requirements of this parking maneuver.

The examiner should select a parking spot on the street and direct the applicant to park, after which the applicant should check for traffic and follow the correct procedures to park safely. One aspect of the task is to ensure that the space is free and that the applicant can legally park there, besides being large enough for the maneuver. The examiner should ensure that the applicant stops the vehicle parallel to the vehicle ahead of the space, about half a metre from it.

Before beginning to park, the applicant should check for traffic in both directions. The decision of whether to proceed or wait often depends on factors such as the amount of available street space and the current traffic conditions. The applicant should choose reverse gear and continuously monitor the position of the test car while also checking for other vehicles that might impede the maneuver.

The applicant should steer to the left when the test vehicle reaches an angle of 45 degrees to the curb. The driver should check the positions of the left rear fender of the stationary vehicle and the right side and front of the test vehicle. The two vehicles must be far enough away from each other that they will not touch. When the applicant is sure that the vehicles have enough clearance to avoid each other, the next step is to pay attention to the vehicle’s rear distance from the curb. Next, the driver should look forward and centre the vehicle in the parking space. The best way of doing this is to check directly rather than by using mirrors unless they are absolutely necessary.

Hits: Objects / Other Vehicles or Climbs Curbs

Some of the possible objects that applicants may hit include marker poles in off-street test areas, lamp posts, parking meters, hydro poles, fire hydrants and trees.

Examiners will not note light contact with any object or vehicle unless it occurs more than once, indicating a lack of skill and reasonable care. Hard bumps will be counted. If damage results from the bump, the applicant will be disqualified.

The examiner may consider a driver incompetent if the front and rear wheels of a vehicle mount a normal curb (6-8 inches) on a street and a car completely blocks the sidewalk.

If a wheel goes over the curb in off-street testing area, the test normally ends. If this happens, the examiner will supply wooden wedges to help the driver to free the car from the curb while avoiding damage to the vehicle.

Incorrect Vehicle Position

For this item, the examiner should check for uneven spacing at the front or back of the vehicle, the vehicle’s angle to the curb and ensure that the vehicle is parked no more than two feet from the curb. The examiner may choose to score this or to ask the applicant to try the maneuver again. In that case, it is best to move to another location for the second attempt.

Fails to Signal When leaving / Incorrect Signal

On receiving a direction to leave a parking space, the applicant should meet all of the requirements of “starting,” including using the proper signals and anything else that is necessary.

Incorrect Use Of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears / Steering

Steering and speed are important here, but otherwise the same controls and remarks regarding starting from the curb also apply.

Keeping the vehicle’s speed at a minimum will allow extra time for the applicant to take extra time for properly performing the maneuver or correcting any steering errors. Anything faster than a walking speed may cause problems and should be scored.

7. Stop, Park and Start on Grade

For this maneuver, the examiner should draw the applicant’s attention to an appropriate place, preferably on an upgrade, as a downgrade is also possible but not as suitable. The applicant should then park the vehicle as if it is to be left unattended. The applicant should have some discretion in choosing the exact location.

Fails to Observe / Uses Mirror Only / and/or Signal Before Leaving

Normally, the applicant should not move the vehicle without first checking traffic conditions to ensure that it is safe. Turning the head is necessary for the applicant to be sure that the intended movement will not conflict with other traffic. Mirrors should be used only to assist with observing the road. The examiner should allow the applicant to decide on the best opportunity to join traffic rather than trying to rush the applicant into heavy traffic.

According to the Highway Traffic Act, drivers are required to signal before any change of direction whenever other traffic is likely to be affected.

Normally, electric turn signals are better than hand signals as both of the driver’s hands will then be free for steering.

One exception to this guideline is for a vehicle preparing to pull out from a line of cars parked by the curb, where the electric signal might not be visible to traffic approaching from the rear. In this case, a clear hand signal gives better information for other drivers than the vehicle’s own signals. The driver should assess traffic conditions to decide when to discontinue the signal.

Drivers should remember that signals merely indicate intention and do not confer any right-of-way. The signaller must not carry out any movement until it is safe to do so.

Rolls Back When Parking or Starting

Once the vehicle has come to a complete stop by the curb and the applicant has allowed the vehicle to roll into position beside the curb, we mark the roll-back only for more than a reasonable distance for safety. However, it is not permissible for a vehicle to roll back when starting away from a curb or on an upgrade. If that happens, the examiner should assess a minor error for a roll-back of about 0.3 metres (one foot) and a major error for any distance that is unreasonable for safety.

Fails to Angle Wheels Properly

When the curb is high enough to stabilize the vehicle and prevent it from rolling away, the applicant should turn the front wheels to the left and allow the car to roll back slowly to allow the wheels to rest against the curb. On a one-way street when parking on a grade, the applicant should turn the wheels to the right if the vehicle is on an upgrade. When there is no curb or the curb is too low to prevent the car from rolling, or if the vehicle is parked on a downgrade, the applicant should turn the wheels to the right. On the left side of a one-way street on a downgrade, the applicant should turn the wheels to the left.

Select proper Gear

According to the Highway Traffic Act, all motor vehicles must have a parking brake in good working order. When a vehicle is stationary, the parking brake should be fully set in the “ON” position.

The applicant should set the gearshift in the Park position in vehicles with an automatic transmission. For standard transmission vehicles, the gearshift should be in either reverse or a low gear. The choice depends on whether the vehicle is parked on an upgrade or a downgrade.

Incorrect Use of: Clutch / Brake / Accelerator / Gears / Steering

These controls are the same as those that apply to the earlier maneuver. They are especially applicable since starting a vehicle on a grade requires drivers to coordinate their minds, hands and feet very precisely.