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The Mystery of "Hestitation"

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Got a question about Student Finance? Ask the experts this week on TSR! 14-09-2014
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    Hello There!

    I was hoping someone could help me out. I've seen (and heard) lots of different things about hesitation. For example, my instructor said this poor girl on her test stopped at every single roundabout, and every single junction, even if it was safe to emerge, and also visible and understandably failed.

    Now, at the moment, I only stop at junctions where I can't see left or right on approach, and will generally peep and creep out of them. But I struggle with roundabouts - I'm fine with emerging on the majority of them and know when I can continue without stopping. However, I generally panic when coming out of roundabouts after having already stopped!

    Would this be counted as hesitation? Being overly cautious at roundabouts?

    Also... this may sound a little bit crazy, but I justify to myself why I'm not going, for example, saying to myself "I don't know if he's turning, I'll wait, he's going a little fast, after this one I'll go". And this is all outloud. If I do this on the test will the examiner think I'm a little crazy?

    Thanks
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    Try going a little slower on the approach to roundabouts where vision is not that good or traffic looks heavy so you have the option of selecting 1st gear in order to keep creeping towards the give way line = no stopping if poss
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    (Original post by linkdapink)
    I justify to myself why I'm not going, for example, saying to myself "I don't know if he's turning, I'll wait, he's going a little fast, after this one I'll go". And this is all outloud. If I do this on the test will the examiner think I'm a little crazy?

    Thanks
    Yes.
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    Talking/mumbling to yourself when driving/on test is a very good thing to do as it helps concentrate your mind on the task and allows the examiner to know what you are thinking

    Examiners really like drivers to do this - seriously
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    (Original post by linkdapink)
    If I do this on the test will the examiner think I'm a little crazy?

    (Original post by ROG.)
    Talking/mumbling to yourself when driving/on test is a very good thing to do as it helps concentrate your mind on the task and allows the examiner to know what you are thinking

    Examiners really like drivers to do this - seriously

    Also along with the mumbling, acknowledge any obvious mistake you make. I made a couple of mistakes on my test today (messed up the hill start, messed up lanes at a roundabout, hesitated when I didn't need to) but as soon as I did, I apologised and tried it again. The examiner said that because he could see I knew what I'd done wrong and I was able to recover from it quickly and safely, he felt I was still a good driver. (I passed btw )
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    (Original post by linkdapink)
    However, I generally panic when coming out of roundabouts after having already stopped!

    Would this be counted as hesitation? Being overly cautious at roundabouts?
    Yes, it will, but to a lesser degree than bringing the vehicle to a stop that was unnecessary in the first place.

    The examiner will see what you see and will judge whether he would have gone in the same circumstances. They appreciate that you won't quite have the judgement of an experienced driver, so if you miss one gap that isn't that big where the examiner considers you could have gone, the fault wouldn't even be worthy of marking. If the gap you miss is quite big and you are clearly waiting for traffic that is plainly heading elsewhere and coming nowhere near you, then you're committing a fault that is now worthy of marking, but not necessarily a fail... yet. Of course, the sliding scale of assessment continues. If you've been there several minutes missing gap after gap while queues of drivers are sounding horns behind you and mounting pavements to get past, then there's obviously a big problem with your judgement and you'll be going home disappointed.

    The most common reason nowadays for serious hesitation faults seems to be a lack of understanding as to how mini-roundabouts work. Many a time the view to the right will be excellent, there won't be a car for miles on the right, yet rather than flow onto the roundabout at a safe progressive speed, the candidate will look ahead beyond the roundabout to see directly oncoming traffic driving in a straight line causing no trouble, but will stop dead and wait for them all to disappear. Of course, this is now an unnecessary stop and following traffic won't be expecting a car to stop there. This means you're at increased risk of a rear end shunt. Similar problems exist where the view to the right is good, nothing is there, but the candidate decides to stop to stare to the left for a while... wtf?

    Another reason for serious hesitation faults is poor control and an inability to multi-task. This is prevalent with candidates who have obviously had too few lessons in basic control and have been put forward for test too soon. Instead of a gentle steer into position, an early glance to the right, multi-tasked with some smooth clutch action and a slick flowing gear change, some badly prepared candidates will stare forwards at the mini-roundabout, stop dead, then look down at the gears while trying every gear until they find first, followed by a lengthy stare at the dashboard to find the biting point. By the time they look up again and remember which way to look (was it left? no.. right? no, wait...) the ample opportunity they had has now long gone and now there's traffic. Repeat this several times and the examiner will soon be losing the will to live and will start checking the ink levels in his pen...
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    (Original post by TheQuietOne)
    Also along with the mumbling, acknowledge any obvious mistake you make. I made a couple of mistakes on my test today (messed up the hill start, messed up lanes at a roundabout, hesitated when I didn't need to) but as soon as I did, I apologised and tried it again. The examiner said that because he could see I knew what I'd done wrong and I was able to recover from it quickly and safely, he felt I was still a good driver. (I passed btw )
    WOOP! Congratulations! I've been told to stop saying oops! But I'm generally mumbling to myself, and talking out loud. My instructor says to try and not say any questions though - cos the examiner could think I'm talking to them and unsure of myself.
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    (Original post by Advisor)
    Yes, it will, but to a lesser degree than bringing the vehicle to a stop that was unnecessary in the first place.

    The examiner will see what you see and will judge whether he would have gone in the same circumstances. They appreciate that you won't quite have the judgement of an experienced driver, so if you miss one gap that isn't that big where the examiner considers you could have gone, the fault wouldn't even be worthy of marking. If the gap you miss is quite big and you are clearly waiting for traffic that is plainly heading elsewhere and coming nowhere near you, then you're committing a fault that is now worthy of marking, but not necessarily a fail... yet. Of course, the sliding scale of assessment continues. If you've been there several minutes missing gap after gap while queues of drivers are sounding horns behind you and mounting pavements to get past, then there's obviously a big problem with your judgement and you'll be going home disappointed.

    The most common reason nowadays for serious hesitation faults seems to be a lack of understanding as to how mini-roundabouts work. Many a time the view to the right will be excellent, there won't be a car for miles on the right, yet rather than flow onto the roundabout at a safe progressive speed, the candidate will look ahead beyond the roundabout to see directly oncoming traffic driving in a straight line causing no trouble, but will stop dead and wait for them all to disappear. Of course, this is now an unnecessary stop and following traffic won't be expecting a car to stop there. This means you're at increased risk of a rear end shunt. Similar problems exist where the view to the right is good, nothing is there, but the candidate decides to stop to stare to the left for a while... wtf?

    Another reason for serious hesitation faults is poor control and an inability to multi-task. This is prevalent with candidates who have obviously had too few lessons in basic control and have been put forward for test too soon. Instead of a gentle steer into position, an early glance to the right, multi-tasked with some smooth clutch action and a slick flowing gear change, some badly prepared candidates will stare forwards at the mini-roundabout, stop dead, then look down at the gears while trying every gear until they find first, followed by a lengthy stare at the dashboard to find the biting point. By the time they look up again and remember which way to look (was it left? no.. right? no, wait...) the ample opportunity they had has now long gone and now there's traffic. Repeat this several times and the examiner will soon be losing the will to live and will start checking the ink levels in his pen...
    Haha, that made me laugh - I'm sure I'm not that bad!!!
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    (Original post by linkdapink)
    Haha, that made me laugh - I'm sure I'm not that bad!!!
    I'd glad you're not But sadly, a good percentage of test candidates are.

    From your first post, it sounds like you only have problems once you've already (and legitimately) stopped. Your only dilemma is moving away, which would normally be a driver fault at worst providing you're not so dithery that you start an acapella of horns. The clue lies in your statement "I don't know if he's turning". There are more subtle clues besides indicators (which you can't always trust), so ask your instructor to expand further on this.
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    (Original post by Advisor)
    I'd glad you're not But sadly, a good percentage of test candidates are.

    From your first post, it sounds like you only have problems once you've already (and legitimately) stopped. Your only dilemma is moving away, which would normally be a driver fault at worst providing you're not so dithery that you start an acapella of horns. The clue lies in your statement "I don't know if he's turning". There are more subtle clues besides indicators (which you can't always trust), so ask your instructor to expand further on this.
    I think in general, I'm fine now, there's just one roundabout in particular where there's something up with the lanes on it or something - people ALWAYS look as though they're coming round, so its impossible to tell by the way the tyres are pointing until the last second when they turn off! And of course, people rarely indicate to come off roundabouts...
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    Part of the problem could be that of not being able to move off quickly, what I call ''the launch technique'. Moving away from stationary with just the clutch and no or very little gas set can cause indecision of the kind that you describe. Haven't seen you drive so can only comment in general terms.

    one to one

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