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Learners Licence: Preparing for the test: Rules of the road

Preparing for the Learner's Licence test


About the test

The test itself is a multiple-choice test - there are no-paragraph or essay-like questions.

There are 3 sections: "Traffic Signs, Signals and Road Markings", "Rules of the Road", and "Controls for Vehicles".

The first 2 sections have 30 questions each, whereas Controls for Vehicles has 8 questions. You need to pass each section on its own before you can pass the whole test - so if you pass 2 of the 3 sections, but fail 1 section (even a little), you will NOT pass your test. You need to pass all 3 sections.

The number of questions you need to get right for each section are as follows:

  • Rules of the Road22/30 (74%)
  • Traffic Signs, Signals, and Road Markings: 23/30 (77%)
  • Controls for Vehicles: 6/8 (75%)

You have 60 minutes to finish your test.

Please note that these numbers may differ slightly between testing centers, so we advise that you always check your local testing center to see what their requirements are.



The following content is a guideline of what you need to study to pass your learner's licence test.


1. Here is what you need to study to pass the rules of the road section of the Test:

Rules of road

  • Children up to 14 years old must sit in the back.
  • You must maintain a 2second space behind the vehicle in front of you, more if the road is wet. 3 seconds for heavy vehicles.
  • Headlights must be on when visibility is 150m or less.
  • Bright lights - must be able to see pedestrians 100m ahead, but must not strike road more than 45m ahead.
  • Parking lights - only used outside of a demarcated parking bay or in a dark area 12m or more from a street light.
  • Triangles must be displayed at least 45m behind a stationary vehicle.
  • Permitted content of alcohol in blood: less than 0.05g per 100ml. Less than 0.02g per 100ml for professional drivers.
  • The tire tread must be at least 1mm deep.
  • Tires must not have any breaks or cuts longer than 25mm or 10% of tire width.
  • Motorcycles of 50cc or less tread pattern must be visible on at least 80% of the tire's width.
  • Hooter must be audible for 90m.
  • Convoys must not travel from 18H00 on an evening before any weekend or on the 25th and 26th of December until 06H00 the following day.
  • People herding animals must carry a warning 150m ahead and behind the herd following & must carry red light between sunset and sunrise, and a 300mm2 red flag during the day.

No Parking:

  • Where the outer edge of the nearside wheel is more than 450mm into the roadway, except where a road sign permits you to.
  • On the road or within 1m of the edge of a road in a non-urban area.
  • Next to or within 1.5m of a fire hydrant.
  • Within 5m of an intersection in an urban area.
  • In an urban area on a two-way road which is less than 5.5m wide.
  • Within 9m of a pedestrian crossing.

No Stopping:

  • On or closer than 6m to a tunnel, bridge, subway, or narrowed point on the road.
  • Closer than 9m to a pedestrian crossing except to let a pedestrian cross.

Being overtaken:

  • You may drive on the left shoulder of a single-lane road during the day to let vehicles overtake you, but do so only if it is safe, and people and vehicles 150m ahead are visible, and it is not a multi-lane road or freeway.
  • Special Vehicles 230kg or less, adapted for disabled people, are not allowed on freeways.

Conveying goods & Passengers:

  • Must not exceed half the height of the vehicle if carried on the roof (except for bicycles).
  • Including vehicle must not exceed 4.3m in height.
  • Including vehicles must not be more than 2.5m wide.
  • Must not project more than 300mm in front of vehicles.
  • Must not project more than 1.8m at the back of the vehicle.

Safety Markings:

  • Loads that project more than 150mm to the side or more than 300mm to the rear must be marked with a 300mm2 red flag at each corner during the day.
  • If the load is less than 600mm wide, one red flag during the day or one red reflector at night is sufficient.


  • Passengers may be carried on the back of an open truck or van if they are seated and the sides are 350mm above the seating surface, or standing if the sides are 900mm high.
  • 2 children up to the age of 6 are counted as 1 adult, and 3 children between the age of 6 and 13 are counted as 2 adults.
  • Each adult requires 380mm of seat length.

Speed limits:

  • Vehicles less than 9000kg: Urban 60km/h. Rural 100km/h. Freeways 120km/h.
  • Commercials over 9000kg: Urban 60km/h. Rural 80km/h. Freeways 80km/h.
  • Buses and Minibuses conveying passengers: Urban 60km/h. Rural 100km/h. Freeways 100km/h.


  • The two vehicles must not be more than 3.5m apart.
  • If the distance between two vehicles is 1.8m or more, the tow rope must be made clearly visible with a red flag tied to it.
  • Max speed: 30 km/h unless a solid bar is used or the towed vehicle is a semi-trailer.
  • A tractor towing a semi-trailer with passengers may exceed 30km/h.


  • Passengers: no more than 2 people may ride on a motorcycle at the same time.


  • Nothing may project more than 600mm beyond the front axle, 900mm behind the rear axle, 450mm on either side of the wheels, or 300mm beyond the wheel of a motorcycle sidecar.


Read next

Learner's Licence: Preparing for the test: Controls of vehicle section


Kiara 21.03.2021 0 160
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