Defensive Driving Resource

Florida Ranks 43rd For Road Rules Knowledge

GMAC: “41 Million Licensed Americans May be Unfit for Roads.” According to the 2009 GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test released on May 20th, 2009, Florida ranked 43rd in the nation when tested on the Florida Driver’s Exam.

Idaho and Wisconsin drivers tied for first place, with an average test score of 80.6 percent. New York drivers ranked last with an average score of 70.5 percent. This is the second time Idaho ranked first and the third time New York has ranked last in the survey’s five-year history.

The survey is designed to gauge drivers’ knowledge by administering 20 actual questions taken from the various states’ Department of Motor Vehicles exams. Ranking 43rd of 50 is disconcerting, considering some of the questions from the Florida test include subjects such as preventing hydroplaning, speed when merging onto a freeway and driving off the paved roadway when passing, to name only a few.

It is common for experienced drivers to forget the rules of the road after driving for many years because the only time the driver’s test is required is upon issuance of a first-time driver license. This could be largely responsible for some staggering statistics. For example, according to the most recent publication of the Florida DHSMV Uniform Traffic Citation Statistics from 2006:

5,097,673 total citations were issued in the state of Florida

2,817,401 (over half) were for non-criminal moving violations (speeding, failed to yield right of way,  following too closely, improper backing, etc.)

636,578 were for criminal moving violations (DUI, Reckless Driving, DWLSR, fleeing, etc.)

1,643,694 were for non-moving violations (unsafe equipment, no seatbelt, no insurance, parking, etc.)

One wonders how many non-criminal moving violations may have been prevented, had these drivers refreshed their knowledge of the rules of the road. A simple and easy practice test could easily decrease your chance of receiving a citation, or worse, being involved in a collision.

Practice tests can now be taken online from the comfort of your own home. While these tests mainly target younger audiences or those pursuing their first time learners’s permit, there is the added benefit to experienced drivers of simply refreshing driving rules knowledge.

There are many different websites where practice driver exams can be taken. One trusted site is Driver Training Associates. The following tests are currently being offered:

If your state isn’t among those listed above, check the DTA website daily, as new states and courses are being added almost every day.

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