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A road test is given to evaluate your driving skills. Are you able to maneuver safely in different traffic situations? That’s why your test routes will take you through school zones, railway crossings, intersections, four-way stops, and much more. Some mistakes that earn automatic fails on driving test in New York driving test in New York that will deny you your license.

New York driver examiners have a checklist developed by the DMV and will assign points after assessing your driving skills. Simple mistakes can earn you automatic fails on driving test in New York. It is, therefore, vital you exercise proper vehicle control and judgment to avoid making road test mistakes. You also have to understand what will make your examiner see a mistake as a fail.

Here are some of the mistakes that can be deemed significant faults during your road test.

Mistakes That Earn Automatic Fails on Driving Test in New York

1. Failing to Understand Your Vehicle

Your examiner will be checking the way you use the vehicle during the test. You have to show that you can wear the seatbelt, use headlights, or signal, and other driving basics.

If you forget such small details, you risk being told to go and come back when you are ready.

2. Having Poor Steering Control

Although there’re no set rules on how to hold the steering, you ought to have full control of the wheel. If you let it spin back after negotiating a corner or steer too soon or too late, this will cause the examiner to fail you automatically since this can endanger pedestrians or other road users.

car steering control for beginners


You may have to use the old-school push-pull technique to gain control, especially when turning sharp corners. Your hands should be on the wheel most of the time.

Making hand-over-hand turns and releasing from the turn with controlled slippage will show the examiner that you know what you are doing.

3. Not Having Parking Control

Your examiner may need you to demonstrate your parallel parking abilities. If you hit other cars or run over the curb, you may be given an automatic fail. Other factors that may disqualify you include poor clutch control, excessive acceleration, stalling the car engine, excessive steering, getting too close to a parked car, using the footbrake harshly, failure to complete within two car lengths, finishing too far away from the left-hand curb and more.

4. Failure to Be Keen While Engaging

Failing to check your mirrors and follow road safety procedures when pulling out from packing can make you fail your road test. To the examiner, you are not paying attention, meaning you can easily cause an accident.

You are supposed to concentrate on what is happening in front of and behind you. In case you need to brake sharply or slow down suddenly, you have to know if there is a car behind that may ram into you once you brake.

Always check the rearview mirror when approaching a hazard and use the side mirrors before changing your position or overtaking.

5. Not Using Car Signals Correctly

When taking a turn or exiting a roundabout, you need to make sure that you cancel the indicator afterward. Sometimes it may fail to self-cancel and give other drivers behind you the indication that you are taking the next left turn when you aren’t.

This can result in an automatic fail on road test. To avoid this, always nudge the indicator into the neutral position when realigning the steering wheel.

6. Failure to Respond to Traffic Signs

Your driving test will take you through frequent stops, and your examiner will be watching carefully to see if you observe the road safety rules by following the stop signs. Failure to do this may land you into trouble.


Once you see the red sign, you should stop, wait for a few seconds for the green light, and check the traffic before proceeding.

Always be keen while on the road and watch out for traffic signs. Don’t turn into roads with ‘No Entry’signs or those that indicate you should give way to oncoming vehicles. Watch out also for roads that tell you to drive within a specific speed limit.

7. Poor Vehicle Speed Control

While driving, your examiner will test your ability to stop, accelerate, and manage other vehicle maneuvers. You should always stick to the speed limit and act appropriately when the limit changes.

You aren’t supposed to drive too fast or too slowly during your road test. Neither are you supposed to brake too hard. Driving too slowly can obstruct the traffic flow.

 Don’t drive too fast when the roads are icy or snowy. Familiarize yourself with the car braking system and only brake during emergencies.

When slowing or stopping, use standard braking. Observing these rules will show your examiner that you’ve adequate judgment while on the road.

8. Making Poor Judgments While Driving

During your road test, you have the responsibility of scanning the road and anticipating when you need to put your best safety foot forward. You must be aware of the situations around you, such as when the lights are changing, pedestrians are crossing, traffic is merging, and more. You should take note of the road hazards as well.

Failing to yield to pedestrians or other cars when required will cause automatic fails on the driving test. You may also lose points if you are overly cautious or when you stop at a controlled intersection while you have the right of way. You should be in control of every situation on the road.

9. Failing to Be Cautious at Intersections

A road test route will take you through an intersection to test your judgment. Never change lanes when you pass through an intersection, whether you are making a turn or driving straight ahead.


Make lane changes when you are safely past the intersection. Also, demonstrate caution and be prepared to brake when reaching an uncontrolled intersection.

10. Crashing Into Objects

Failure to avoid collision with a stationary object while parking, turning, or reversing during a driver’s test will result in an immediate disqualification.

Therefore, when performing a reverse stall parking maneuver, it is crucial to maintain a safe distance from objects such as concrete barriers, fences, or any other obstruction to avoid contact, which would lead to automatic failure.

11. Poor Lane Changing

Although signaling, checking mirrors, and blind spots before changing lanes is not a complex task, many individuals, including those taking the DMV test, often fail to do so.

Therefore, it is crucial to change lanes correctly. When instructed by the DMV examiner to switch lanes during the test, the following steps should be taken:

While changing lanes, keep an eye out for any potential hazards in front of you and maintain an appropriate speed.

12. Braking Too Hard

Before taking your DMV test, you must familiarize yourself with the brake sensitivity of the vehicle you will be operating. While it is good to brake abruptly in critical situations, you need to apply the brakes with moderate force when stopping or reducing speed. It should be enough to accomplish the task without throwing yourself or your passengers forward.

Want to Pass Your Driving Test with Flying Colors?

On your road test day, your examiner expects you to exercise proper judgment while on the road. Always keep left, at least a meter from the curb, and to the middle of the lane markings.

Adjust your to safely handle any hazards you may encounter while driving. Adhere to the rules of traffic and, finally, be confident with yourself and you will avoid these mistakes that earn automatic fails on driving test in New York.

When getting ready for the road test, many new drivers get overwhelmed and nervous. We can train you to gain more confidence and pass the driving test right on the first time. What’s more, we can help you schedule your road test and provide a vehicle for the same. We handle all that for you so you have ample time impressing your road test examiner. Check out our flexible packages or simply give us a call at 718-576-6277.