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Left reverse round corner driving test manoeuvre

Updated on January 4, 2013

Driving Standards Agency UK

Left reversing exercise

Here are some driving test tips to help you with the left reverse round the corner manoeuvre on the UK practical car assessment, and carry it out to the standard required by the DSA driving examiner.
This reversing exercise in my opinion is the hardest manoeuvre that you can get on the driving test, and is one of the largest stumbling blocks for learner drivers hoping to get a full british licence.

DSA driving manoeuvre secrets

The key secret to successfully carrying out any manoeuvre on the UK driving test is to keep the car very slow, and take effective observations all around the car, reacting to ALL hazards spotted, remembering that all other road users have priority over you when you are performing a manoeuvre.

Before you start this reversing exercise, the DSA examiner will ask you stop the car on the left just before the junction to be used, will point out the corner, and then tell you that you need to reverse in the junction keeping resonably close to it without touching the kerb. He will then ask you to proceed when you are ready.

Before moving off, you should use the POM routine, making sure that those observations you make are effective, and you should not be in a hurry to get the exercise over with.
Move out into the main road, and as you approach the junction on your left, look into the road to see if it is safe to carry out the manoeuvre, how sharp the corner is, pull up about 1-2 car lengths from the junction about a drain's width from the kerb (use a signal if necessary).

Straight Reverse
Get the car prepared to reverse, and when it is safe, release the handbrake and do a very slow straight reverse to your turning point, making sure you are aware of everything around you, including pedestrians. At the point of turn stop to have a good look around to make sure that it is absolutely safe to steer (remembering the front of your car is going to swing out to the right)

Common DSA Manuever Mistakes

Safe driving manoeuvre

If it is safe to proceed, then steer to the left (the amount you steer by will be determined by how sharp the corner is) keeping the car very slow so you keep an eye on the kerb/corner while still being aware of what is happening around you via your observations. If you see anything you should stop and let them get out of your way unless you are already in the side road.

It doesn't matter how many times you stop, as long as there is a hazard, you need to evaluate if you are going to remain safe before continuing. The most common reason people fail this manoeuvre on the driving test is failure to see pedestrians walking in the road, or not giving way to other cars!

A useful thing to do while perfoming this manoeuvre, is to wind down you windows, this allows you to hear vehicles as they approach, sometimes before you see them, of course you must react otherwise the dsa driving examiner can penalise you.

DSA Test Advice Video Independent Driving


Because this manoeuvre is a hard one to master, you need to make sure you get enough practise with your driving instructor or supervising driver, using various roads at different times of the day (both queit and busy), as the only way you will be able to confidently deal with this exercise under test conditions is to practice until it is second nature to you.

If you are in the UK, I offer driving lessons in London for anyone who would like professional help with this or any of the other manoeuvres that you might be required to perform on the UK driving test.


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      kat 7 years ago

      I need to kno when to turn the stEering wheel left or right when reversing

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      Jamie 7 years ago

      Do i need to signal when reversing around the corner or maybe even use hazard lights ?

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      shaway 8 years ago

      can you not make any point to reversing corner