Can you answer these five basic theory questions?

A young woman reading an important document

It’s important to keep up with Highway Code updates

Over half of drivers haven’t read the Highway Code since passing their driving test, despite several recent updates being added to the rule book.

88% of drivers can’t answer basic questions 

When Independent Advisor Car Insurance surveyed 2,010 drivers across the country they found almost 90% were unable to answer five basic theory questions correctly. Plus, over half of them would’ve failed their test if they retook it today. 

The official pass mark for the UK is 86%. For the purposes of the survey, the pass mark was set at 80%, meaning drivers needed to give correct answers to four out of the five correct. 

What are the questions? 

  1. What, if anything, do you think triangular road signs indicate? 
  2. What lights, if any, do you think are appropriate to turn on when driving on the motorway at night, when there are cars ahead of you? 
  3. What, if anything, do you think the legal speed limit on a motorway is, if no signs indicate otherwise? 
  4. When driving on a wet road, what time gap, if any, do you think you need to leave between your car and the car in front of you? 
  5. What, if anything, do you think you should do if you have to quickly slow down when driving on the motorway? 

If you don’t know the answer to some of these questions, you may want to read the Highway Code again as it was updated in 2022. The number of fixed penalty notices issued has also seen a sharp rise since 2022.  

If you knew all, or most, of the answers then congratulations! You’d most likely be able to pass your test if you retook it today. 

What are the answers? 

  1. Warnings
  2. Dipped headlights
  3. 61mph to 70mph 
  4. 405 seconds 
  5. Turn on your hazard lights 

21% of the respondents were unable to correctly identify the ‘warning’ road sign while one in five thought they should turn on their main beam headlights while driving on the motorway, something which puts other drivers at risk of being blinded. 

Young drivers, aged 17-24, were found to be most likely to fail their test, with one in ten getting zero answers correct. 

If you’d like more information, check out our blog on the changes to the Highway Code.  

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