North Carolina Drivers Test
Before you can be allowed to get out on the road alone, the Department of Transportation needs to make sure that you are able to control the vehicle and that you know how to apply driving rules in real life situations. That is what the North Carolina drivers test is all about - proving that you are a safe driver and won't pose a threat to those you share the road with. Teenagers who are taking a North Carolina driving test prior to reaching the age of 18 years will need to meet all of the state's graduated license requirements prior to scheduling the road skills exam. If you are looking for tips that can help you pass your North Carolina driver's license test the first time you take it, there is really only one advice we can give you - practice for as many hours as possible, experience is everything when it comes to driving.
Drivers Test Requirements
Keep in mind that taking a driving test is the final step on the road towards achieving a North Carolina drivers license, which means there are plenty of steps that you need to take before you get to this point. Drivers license requirements in North Carolina are age dependent and teenagers need to follow the North Carolina graduated driver's license rules that pose additional requirements before them. Graduated license laws apply to everyone who choose to take a drivers license test before reaching the age of 18. The reason behind this is the fact that teenagers face significantly higher risks to be involved in a traffic accident than older drivers. In fact, when compared against older drivers, teens have twice as many accidents per half the miles traveled. Clearly, this calls for some corrective actions and that's where the graduated drivers license program comes in.
Under 18 Years of Age
If you are under 18 years of age, you should start by applying for a North Carolina limited learners permit. You have to be at least 15 years of age and have completed a North Carolina drivers ed program to be eligible for a permit. If you meet these requirements, visit a local DOT office, file the required paperwork, take a vision exam and a limited permit test. Once you pass the tests, you are issued with a limited permit that allows you to start practicing for your North Carolina drivers test. Keep in mind that your permit is not called a limited permit for no reason - you have to observe all North Carolina permit restrictions throughout the whole period while you are operating under this permit.
If you have held your limited drivers permit for 12 months, are at least 16 years of age and have not been convicted of any moving violations within this period, you are good to schedule your North Carolina DOT drivers test. If you pass the test, you will graduate to the next level of the program and will be issued with a level two provisional license.
18 Years of Age and Older
If you are already at least 18 years of age, you do not need to follow the graduated license rules prior to taking your drivers license test, however you must still go through the same testing procedures and meet the same health requirements. When you are ready to apply for a learners permit, visit the DOT, file your paperwork and take a vision exam and a North Carolina drivers permit test. If you need to prepare for the permit test, check out the official drivers license handbook. The permit test is based on the information contained in the book, so there is no better study aid. You can also compliment reading the book with North Carolina driver's practice tests that you can find online.
A permit allows you to practice driving while another licensed driver is supervising you. There is no minimum amount of time that you need to hold a permit for, but we advise that you take your time prior to scheduling your North Carolina driving test. The more you practice now, the easier it will be for you to pass the test.
Once you feel that you are ready, schedule the drivers test with the DOT. When you pass the test, you are issued with a full unrestricted drivers license.
What to Expect / Things to Bring
One thing you should arrange in advance is the vehicle you will be taking the test in. The DOT does not offer vehicles for those who are taking a North Carolina driving test, so it's up to you to find one. The vehicle must be registered, titled and carry proper car insurance. Your vehicle must also be in good mechanical condition as the drivers license examiner will run a quick safety check on it before the drivers test begins. If the vehicle does not meet any of these requirements, you will be denied the chance to take the road skills test.
When you show up for the driving test, you will need to have your learners permit or a limited learners permit with you. You must also be driven to the test or, if you are driving, a supervising driver must be seated next to you. You are not allowed to drive to the testing site alone.
The driving examiner will assess both your ability to control the vehicle and your knowledge of the state driving rules, so you may wish to grab that North Carolina drivers handbook and brush up on the rules before you come to the testing site.
During the drivers license test, you will be tested on the following things:
- Approaches to intersections, stop signs and traffic signals;
- Quick stops — stopping as quickly and safely as possible when told to do so;
- Stopping, starting and parking;
- Use of the clutch (in vehicles with standard transmissions);
- Shifting to a lower gear on a downgrade;
- Turn signals and use of the horn;
- Use of lanes;
- Following another vehicle;
- Passing and being passed;
- Yielding the right of way to pedestrians and other vehicles;
- Driving posture; and
- Three-point turnabout.
Licensees who are at least 18 years of age and pass the driving test are issued with a full unrestricted drivers license. Those who pass the drivers test and are under 18 years of age are awarded with a level two limited provisional license. If you are issued with a provisional license, you will need to observe all North Carolina provisional license restrictions until they are lifted off your license.
Many people spend hours on the Internet trying to find tips for passing the North Carolina driving test, which is a waste of time. The only way to pass the test is to practice, so instead of spending your time online, grab someone with a valid drivers license who could supervise you and go out for a drive.