Will I fail my driving test for crossing my arms?

This is probably the most common question I get asked as a driving instructor and to be honest, there is a little bit of confusion about the answer. Even from professional driving instructors and it often divides opinion.

We often get clients from other driving instructors that have been told do not cross your arms because you’ll fail your test, even when it is causing them other problems.

Parents will even tell you ‘Don’t cross your arms, you’ll fail your test’ which makes the whole question even more confusing as they proceed to drive to Grandma’s crossing their arms whilst steering. 

Question Will I fail my driving test for crossing my arms : The Answer

So I suppose the answer to the question ‘Will I fail my driving test for crossing my arms?’ Is… Probably not.

The reason for this is to fail your driving test for crossing your arms, there needs to be a lack of control. In other words, because you crossed your arms it caused you to lose control of your vehicle.

When can I cross my arms?

There are times when NOT crossing your arms might cause you to be marked down on your driving test. If you have a very tight left turn for instance and by NOT crossing your arms, you can’t keep the car on the correct side of the road.

Sometimes you might want to cross your arms when driving into a parking bay or turning the car around, to improve the handling of the manoeuvre.

If your instructor insists on you NOT crossing your arms and you’re struggling, tell them and they should be able to provide help and suggestions.

Case study

A while ago I taught a lady to drive who wasn’t very tall. To reach the pedals, she had to sit very close to the steering wheel, and as a result couldn’t steer easily without crossing her arms.

Making her pull and push the steering wheel would have made it almost impossible to drive safely.

We discussed the problem and agreed there were times when it might be safer for her to cross her arms. However, she aimed to keep to the best practice of not crossing her arms as much as possible.

Will I fail my driving test for crossing my arms?

Will I fail my driving test for crossing my arms?

In Summary: 

Crossing your arms is not the best practice so unless you absolutely have to, try not to. But don’t worry about it too much, as long as you keep control of the car however you steer will be fine, well maybe not if you use your knees or go hands free.

Just make sure you keep control and wherever possible, aim to adhere to the best practice of keeping both hands on the wheel without crossing your arms.