7 Common Mistakes New Driving Students Commit

You may not believe it, but most students who go to driving schools or institutes for driving lessons commit simple mistakes when meeting their driving instructor.

In this article, I will attempt to highlight 7 of the common mistakes which all new driving students usually make.

1) Not wearing shoes.

To wear slippers and not shoes is one of the most common mistakes made by most students. Road Transport Department rules and regulations insist that students should only wear shoes and not slippers.

I have yet to come across incident of the authorities ever stopping a driving school vehicle and imposing stern actions against it. Whatever it is, driving school instructors should always, as they say, “Be prepared” for such eventualities to happen.

What about ladies who wear high heels while coming for their driving lessons? Are such shoes ever allowed or encouraged? The answer to the above question is an emphatic “No, no”. It is not only not encouraged at all, it is in fact not to be allowed in the first place.

2) Not wearing seat belts.

Most students who take up driving lessons comprises of young drivers nowadays. These students are usually inexperienced and some have never driven cars before.

These students, due to the fact that they seldom drive, tend to forget the wearing of seat belts. But not wearing a seat belt is in fact a RM300 fine under the Akta Pengangkutan Jalan 1987.

To avoid being caught for such an offense, the driving instructor is therefore reminded to see to it that before moving off, students wear or put on their seat belts before beginning a driving lesson.

Assuming, a student forgets to wear his or her seat belt and is stopped by either the J.P.J. or the police, who then is responsible? The instructor or the student? Who then pays or settles the fine imposed?

Thinking about this portion deeply, the instructor is paid for instructing his students. In this respect, it is therefore the instructor who is at fault. It is he who has to pay for the mistake the student commits.

3) Not ensuring that no cars or vehicles are approaching from the right or back before driving off.

The above is a very common mistake committed by most new students. They tend not to ensure that cars or vehicles are approaching from either the back or from the right before taking off. Accidents can very easily happen if undue care is not taken.

New students are normally forgetful over such things. Therefore, the driving instructor is advised to see to it their students whom they are instructing make it a point to see that no vehicles are approaching from the right or back before moving off.

4) Not releasing the handbrake before driving off.

Not releasing the handbrake is another common mistake made by students. They fail to remember that before a vehicle moves off, the handbrakes have to be released. So, driving instructors are therefore advised, make sure this important item of a vehicle is down before the student and the instructor move off.

In short, a good instructor should always be on the lookout and making sure the student make it a point to release the handbrake before moving off.

5) Forgetting to step on the clutch when stopping.

To stop a vehicle requires the clutch being applied. Failure to do the above will result in a vehicle’s engine stalling or dying off.

As most students are new and not too well versed with this requirement, make it a point to remind students that they have to remember to step on the clutch should they intend to stop. Only when students have learnt enough lessons will they be able to remember stepping on the clutch when they wish to stop.

6) Not closing the door tightly after entering a car.

I observe very often students on entering a car fail to close the door tight enough. This results in the cabin light lightening up, which indicates that the doors are not shut properly. New students will not be aware of this mistake. Students will therefore have to be told of their mistakes over and over again.

7) Trying to push the car into first gear while the car is still moving.

As a driver, are you aware that it is wrong to push the car or vehicle into first gear whist it is still moving? Some students, due to their ignorance, tend to do this whilst they are driving.

A student should be told not to attempt pushing or engaging a car into gear one should it be still in motion. Doing this will eventually spoilt the gear system of a vehicle.

The driving instructor should possess the responsibility of advising students that they should only resort to pushing the gears into 1st gear when the car or vehicle is at a dead stop or stationary.

The above are 7 common mistakes which new students commit when they come for their driving lessons. As a responsible driving instructor, it is your duty to see to it that no such mistakes are committed.

By | 2012-11-01T15:42:58+08:00 August 12th, 2010|Driving Schools|11 Comments

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  1. Edy August 13, 2010 at 9:27 am - Reply

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    My License expired this month, but im currently at overseas. how do i renew it? Online or can anyone back in Malaysia do it for me? Thank you very much.

    • Cikgu Yap August 16, 2010 at 10:21 am - Reply

      Try sending your license back. Ask your family members to help you.

  2. driving lessons solihull August 14, 2010 at 10:40 pm - Reply

    People make simple mistakes like those you wrote on your blog. Another thing is that they sometimes forget using their signal lights and turning it off.

    • Cikgu Yap August 17, 2010 at 3:05 pm - Reply

      Thank you for reminding about signal lights usage. It can lead to dangerous situations too.

  3. Sarah August 17, 2010 at 7:35 am - Reply

    I am holding a “L” license and I am scared thinking about the test. Sometimes, we don’t do these mistakes while learning. It is on that test day that we might actually do these mistakes, being too scared.

    • Cikgu Yap August 19, 2010 at 12:02 pm - Reply

      It’s normal to feel nervous. Anyway, do the best you can. Drive carefully. Try to commit the least mistakes as possible. Leave the rest to luck.

  4. teo December 5, 2010 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    Cikgu Yap very informative blog you have here.i have completed the KPP, passed the Computer Test and completed the 6hr (3h class and 3hr practical learning about car controls, stereng, gear and also the parking, uphill & downhill, 3 point turn. actually my replacement instructor wants me to go out to the roads in today’s lesson but after seeing how i did in the institute circuit he decides its better not to go out into the roads. after teaching almost 1hr, he feels that he had no patience in teaching me who was a slow learner and pass back me to my actual instructor. He found that i had problem with stereng control (keeps on outside the line), my hands keeps on bersilang,and also with gear controls.also my hands were rather slow in turning the stereng.when my actual instructor took over he was more patient than the replacement instructor and I did a few uphill and downhill practice, 3 point turn and parking. with this kind of progress i dont see myself getting a driving license in the near future and Im kind of scared!the instructor states that need to press on the accelerator rather than release the clutch slowly to move the car in certain situations.
    Cikgu Yap I also wish to ask when is the time to move by releasing slowly clutch and when should use accelerator. I know in straight road, we press on the accelerator a bit and changes the gear, but how about a short straight road with a small turn?
    and can you give tips on how to control the stereng after making a turn so that it wont go out from the lane.
    Thanks and sorry if i have too many questions, there is still a lot i have to learn

    • Cikgu Yap December 7, 2010 at 12:05 pm - Reply

      The second instructor appears to be a better instructor. Regards the correct way of holding the steering, your instructor should adopt the 10 and 2 method. The instructor should constantly observe your hands and correct them from time to time if its wrong.

      Unfortunately, neither of your instructors seem to be able to instill confidence in you. This is indeed sad. Regarding accelerator, a student should be advised to step on the accelerator first and ensure that the engine is audibly heard for at least 2 seconds. Step number 2 is to then leave the clutch 50% and control the other 50% until the car move. With this method, the vehicle will unlikely to stall.

    • hey February 21, 2011 at 12:51 am - Reply

      My problem is exactly the same as yours. I thought i was the only one in this world who got this kind of problem, lol

      • Keith May 8, 2011 at 7:36 pm - Reply

        I also faced the same problem. During learning, I just release the clutch without stepping on the accelerator. This is just fine for my instructor’s car. I did this for the following 4 lessons and the QTI test. However, during the actual driving test, when I tried to do what I usually did, the engine of the car died off when the clutch was raised slowly! This scared the hell out of me! I was so nervous and I tried a second attempt. And I came out the same as the first attempt. I was so scared then I remembered about my instructor saying stepping on the accelerator. I tried it and the car finally moved. Well, it is sad to say that I failed my test and I am going to resit it tomorrow. I really hope that I will remember using the accelerator during start up because the 3 point turn won’t tolerate any engine dies off!

        • Cikgu Yap May 13, 2011 at 9:06 pm - Reply

          It all boils down to the fact that your instructor has instructed you incorrectly.

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