Idaho drivers race to top of GMAC knowledge test
If knowledge is power, Idaho drivers are among the most powerful in the U.S. That’s a conclusion emerging from a national survey of driver knowledge conducted recently by GMAC Insurance Co.
Idaho drivers, along with those in Wisconsin, collectively scored higher on a 20-question exam than all other drivers. It was the second time in three years Idaho finished ahead of the pack. GMAC has been conducting the online test for five years.
Only the finest of margins separated the top five states. Behind Idaho and Wisconsin’s identical scores of 80.6 were: Montana, 80.5; Kansas, 80.4; and South Dakota and Nebraska at 80.2. Idaho drivers scored 82.7 on the test last year to rank fourth, but were first in 2007 with 81.7.
Granted, the multiple-choice drivers’ knowledge test isn’t as stringent as a medical school exam or state bar exam. But it does shed light on whether individuals who operate motor vehicles understand basic rules of the road. Such as:
Q. A traffic light with a flashing red signal means?
Q. When making right or left turns, a driver should signal ______ before the turn?
A. 100 feet
B. 50 feet
C. 35 feet
D. 5 feet
Q. A diamond-shaped sign means?
Q. Under most conditions, what is a safe following distance?
A. 3 seconds
B. 10 seconds
C. 20 seconds
Idaho drivers would answer, respectively: stop, 100 feet, warning and 3 seconds. In New Jersey or New York they might answer: speed up, after the turn, no smoking zone, and never be the one following. Not surprisingly, New Jersey and New York scored 50th and 51st on the test.
Here are a couple of questions GMAC did not ask, but could have:
Q. How many miles per hour can you drive over the posted speed limit and still be within the law?
A. 10 mph
20 mph, or
As fast as you want?
Q. If texting while driving, which three other functions should be permitted at the same time?
B. Eating French fries
C. Drinking coffee
D. Applying mascara
Q. When approaching a traffic signal that is solid yellow, you should...
A. Speed up
B. Honk your horn
C. Close your eyes, or
D. All of the above
Q. If you’re driving a gasoline-powered 40-foot motor home up a 7 percent grade while towing a fiberglass ski boat, when should you use a slow-vehicle turnout?
When there are 5 cars behind yours
9 cars behind yours
C. You can’t see then end of the line, or
GMAC also offered a bonus question – actually a preference – with no right or wrong answer:
Q. Do you believe applicants should be required to take a standard, national written driver’s test to obtain their learner’s permit or driver’s license?
Yes, No, Undecided or It doesn’t matter.
If you want to test your driving knowledge, visit the GMAC Web site at: http://www.nationaldriverstest.com/national-drivers-test/ndt-test.php