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What is a driving risk assessment?

What is a driving risk assessment?

Driving risk assessment, what is this?

A driving risk assessment follows the same basic principles as any other risk assessment. It identifies hazards, safety and risk factors, evaluates risk, and addresses hazard elimination.

Various factors are involved. For example, the risk factor is not the same if you use your car to drop kids at school and go to doctor’s appointments, or if you use it only for professional purposes. Here, we have outlined what a driving risk assessment contains and how to prepare for it.

What is a driving risk assessment?

A driving risk assessment is used to identify a driver’s skills accurately, manage risks, ensure road safety and guarantee compliance with legal driving regulations. Many employers use driving risk assessments to evaluate their drivers' physical and analytic abilities while driving, and make sure they conform with safety regulations.

A driving risk assessment often involves an online component. It will ask several test questions and do an online assessment. Afterward, you complete a driving test at the driving centre. The duration of a driving risk assessment varies but it usually takes several hours.

First, your driving instructor or assessor introduces themselves. Then, you discuss your driving history, as well as any medical or cognitive health conditions that may affect your driving. You may be asked to take written tests or evaluations before. The driving part of your assessment takes less than an hour. Lastly, back at the driving centre, you review the assessment together with your instructor.

After the test, you will receive a full report with the final results.

What is the purpose of a driver risk assessment?

  • A driving risk assessment is primarily used to evaluate drivers’ physical ability behind the wheel. However, it can be useful to maintain positive health conditions, both physical and mental.
  • A motor vehicle may require modifications due to a physical condition or disability. In this case, a full assessment of the car and the driver is necessary. Similarly, adjustments may be made for drivers who have been diagnosed with a condition affecting their mental health.
  • If you are a new driver or under a certain age, it may also be advisable to perform an assessment.
  • Driving risk assessments are often used by companies or government authorities to identify the risks of employees being involved in a crash. Company assessments can usually be done online with an assessment platform that generates risk assessment profiles for individual employees.
  • Finally, ongoing assessments also help to monitor a driver's progress after taking part in a safe driving course or education programme.

How do I prepare for the driver risk assessment?

The first step is taking an online driver risk assessment. It can help you and your assessor to identify critical risk factors and potential issues. Always keep in mind that the goal of this assessment is to ensure driving safety.

As with any test, preparation is vital to increase your chances of success.

  • Take a driver training course to learn safe driving techniques. During your driving assessment, you need to be alert and aware of all possible dangers and hazards. A driver course will teach you defensive driving skills that will help you develop the ability to scan and identify hazards with ease.
  • Improve your driving techniques. Being aware of what is going on around you is critical, not just controlling your vehicle.
  • Repeat and implement road rules. Practice and become familiar with all manoeuvres to build confidence. Be ready to demonstrate all the driving skills that will be assessed: three-point turns, using controlled and uncontrolled intersections, signalling, use of mirrors, service and identification of controls, etc.
  • Concentrate. It takes time to maintain a high focus on your driving while receiving instructions.
  • Take care of your vehicle. Your vehicle is part of your driving. It is important to be sure that it meets guidelines and that it is adequately registered. On a technical aspect, every element needs to be operational: brakes, brake lights, reverse lights, indicators, handbrake, tyres, windscreen, etc.

Preparation and driver education is vital, so take every possible opportunity to drive with an experienced driver and ask for their feedback.


Need more information about what is a driving risk assessment? Read our complete guide about driving assessment. See also: information and advice about driving test certificate, driving test programme: all you need to know, complete guide about eye test certificate for driving licence, online driving examiner assessment: all you need to know.

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