24: Core Competencies – Fault Analysis

Warning – this unit was last revised in 2007

Unit 24: Core Competencies – Fault Analysis

Research Material:
The Driving Instructor’s Handbook

Before you can give them a cure – you need to know why the problem happened so that it can be prevented next time.

“Fault Analysis
This covers the ability, having identified a fault, to accurately analyse the cause and offer an analysis as appropriate. It covers inaccurate, incomplete or omitted fault analysis.” – From the examiner’s marking guidelines (ADI1).

Fault Analysis – Why? – GAIN AGREEMENT!
In it’s simplest form, this would follow the “we’re doing 34 in this 30 zone” with “look behind, and ease off the gas/brake a touch until we’re back at a safe speed”.
Problem sorted. However, this does not prevent the same mistake from happening again. Here we have to work out why the mistake occurred.

1: Did the customer know what they were doing wrong?
(“did you realise we were going 34?”)
If the answer to this question is yes, skip to question 2.

If the answer is no, you need to work out why not – were they following the car in front, or going down a hill? From here you should agree on a way of preventing it happening again.

2: Did the customer know what they should have done?
(“did you know we were in a 30 zone?”)
If the answer is yes, skip to question 3.

If the answer is no, you need to work out why not – had they missed a sign, or presumed a wide road was a faster road? Again, you need to agree on a plan to prevent it happening again.

3: Why did it happen?
(“if you knew we were exceeding the limit, why didn’t we slow down?”)

This is the awkward one – were they feeling pressure from the truck behind? Were they trying to gain speed ready for a raise in speed limit ahead? Once you have found out why it happened, you need to restate the dangers of the mistake.

It can often be useful to follow up with the final question:

Why shouldn’t we do that?
(“Why shouldn’t we go over the 30 limit here”)

Guide the answer toward the dangers – beware of the answer: “because I’ll fail my test”!

    As driving instructors we have a duty to make people think!

Discussion Points:
Why did it happen – was it:
A lack of knowledge?
A lack of skill?
Or an attitude problem?

Your trainer will role-play the same faults as in the fault ID unit, and this time you will need to continue through the fault analysis.
Clutch control
Use of speed

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