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Check before you change direction to pass your driving test – tip 3

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Top 123 Tips to Pass your Driving test First time

As a trusted driving school we get lots of questions asked about learning to drive etc. So we have decided to create blogs for all the FAQ’s about learning to drive. This blog post is part of our 123 top tips to pass your driving test.

top tips to pass your driving test - move off safely

MSM – Mirrors, Signal then Maneuver!

Is it safe to set off?

 According to the DVSA, one of the top ten reasons marked for a failure on the test sheets is Mirrors – (change direction).

What does the DVSA say about Mirrors?

The DVSA every year produce a list of the top 10 fails recorded on the marking sheets. For the Past 13 years, one of the main reasons why people fail is not Checking the mirrors before changing direction.  The DVSA DT1 tells examiners to:

While in traffic, the candidate must observe (including the use of rear-view mirrors) road markings, signs and react appropriately to potential or actual risks.

When assess Use of mirror(s):

Failure to make effective use of the mirrors well before:

    • signalling
    • changing direction
    • changing speed


The examiner is looking for you to take effective observations and ensure its safe to change position. We use the acronym MSM – Mirrors, Signal then Manouver. This allows you to check whats around you, then decide what or if a signal would be of benifit to anyone and them contuniue the manouver you thought about carrying out.

Why do you need to make sure it’s safe to change position?

You need to always know what’s around you in order to be able to make the correct decisions. If you cant see the risks on the road then you can’t plan or prepare for them. Benjamin Franklin’s quote ‘If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail‘ is a great thing to remember when driving.

REMEMBER MSM – Mirrors, Signal, Manouver.


If you have any thoughts or comments on this post, we would love to hear your opinions or views. Just leave us a comment below.

Chris RichardsCheck before you change direction to pass your driving test – tip 3

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