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What questions do Washington residents get wrong on driving test?

Did you know that almost half of the Washington state residents who take the drivers' exam fail it the first time around? According to the Department of Licensing, test-takers must correctly answer at least 20 of 25 questions about safe driving practices and traffic laws in order to pass the "knowledge test." The questions are generated randomly from a pool of 185.

Seattlepi.com recently requested a list from the DOL of the top 10 questions that stump Washington state residents. The questions show that Seattle area drivers are puzzled by how to drive near school buses, bicycles and joggers, as well as how to properly turn left and use headlights. Young drivers, in particular, have difficulty with the rules surrounding distracted driving, as well as the proper distance for changing lanes around tractor-trailers. Of course, much of these areas of confusion are demonstrated by car accidents in the area.

A few specific questions that people have trouble with are listed below. The correct answers are listed at the end of the post.

1. On a roadway with three or more lanes, you must stop for a school bus with flashing red lights:

A. Only if you are traveling in the same direction as the bus.
B. If you are traveling in the opposite direction as the bus.
C. Only if children are crossing the road.
D. If you are traveling in either direction.

2. When riding at night, a bicycle must have a white headlight visible for:

A. 300 feet
B. 400 feet
C. 500 feet
D. 600 feet

3. A driver should be extra alert for motorcyclists, bicycles and pedestrians because:

A. They have the right-of-way.
B. They obey different traffic laws.
C. They are hard to see in traffic.
D. They do not have a rearview mirror.

4. If your car starts to skid, turn your steering wheel:

A. In the direction you want the vehicle to go.
B. In the opposite direction of the skid.
C. To keep the front wheels straight.
D. In any direction, it doesn't matter.

Answers: 1: A; 2: C; 3: C; 4: A.

Source: SeattlePI.com, "Top 10 questions people often get wrong on driver's exam," Scott Gutierrez, May 13, 2012

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