How to Prepare for the Hazard Perception Test

By Michelle

If you are getting ready to take your first step towards acquiring your driver's licence, you would have probably heard of the Hazard Perception Test. The Hazard Perception test is the next important step to getting a driving license once you have completed the journey at the driving school, have been on your learner's permit for the desired duration and have completed the logbook hours.

Additionally, this exam is critical for protecting the safety of you and others on the road. Did you know that many rookie drivers are involved in accidents because they struggle to recognise possible risks on the road? This demonstrates how critical it is to identify the hazards. This test acts as a benchmark towards that direction.

But the question that arises is what is a Hazard Perception test. This article will teach you all you need to know about Hazard Perception.

What is The Hazard Perception Test (HPT)?

The Hazard Perception Test (HPT) is a crucial computer-based touch-based evaluation introduced in 2002 that allows you to graduate from learning a driver's permit to a P1 professional license. It is designed to assess your ability to identify potential hazards while driving. In this context, hazards refer to situations or conditions that need you to take action to avoid a potential accident or incident on the road.

In this test, you will be presented with a series of video clips during the test. These clips depict various driving scenarios. They simulate real-life experiences you might encounter on the road. Your task is to spot and react to potential hazards as they unfold within these video clips.

A hazard could be anything that might prompt you to change your driving behaviour. These may include a pedestrian crossing the road unexpectedly, a car braking before you, or a cyclist swerving your path.

Your responses in this test are assessed based on how quickly you recognise and respond to these hazards. Reacting promptly to hazards is essential because it reflects your ability to anticipate and manage risky situations while driving. Moreover, if you have joined a driving school, then you will face such scenarios in real life, increasing your chances of clearing the exam.

Furthermore, the test aims to gauge your overall hazard perception skills and your aptitude for making timely decisions that enhance road safety.

How Many Questions are There in a Hazard Perception Test?

The number of questions in a Hazard Perception Test can vary based on your location in Australia.


New South wales

The Hazard Perception Test in New South Wales consists of 15 video clips. You need to identify and respond to potential hazards in each video clip. For each attempt, the Hazard Perception Test in New South Wales (NSW) costs $21.30.



The Hazard Perception Test in Queensland consists of 15 questions. This assessment can be taken online or at designated customer service centres or authorised agents. The fee for each test attempt is $39.95.



The Hazard Perception Test in Victoria comprises 25 questions, and a passing score requires you to achieve at least 13 out of 25. You can take the test online or at a VicRoads customer service centre. The initial try is complimentary, while subsequent attempts incur a fee of $19.40 each.


Western Australia

The Hazard Perception Test in WA comprises approximately 30 questions. You can take the test personally at a Driver and Vehicle Services Centre or with an authorised agent. The initial test fee is $28.40, while every subsequent test costs $22.90.

What Things You Need to Carry While Going for a Hazard Perception Test?

When you are getting ready for your Hazard Perception Test, it is essential to have everything to ensure a smooth experience. Here's a checklist of items you need to carry:

  • Learner’s Permit
  • Application Form
  • Proof of Primary and Secondary Identification

How to Prepare for the Hazard Perception Test

Preparing for your Hazard Perception Test requires a combination of knowledge and practice. Here is a step-by-step breakdown to help you prepare with confidence:

1. Understand the test format

Take a moment to grasp the format of the Hazard Perception Test. Remember that it consists of video clips that simulate various driving scenarios. These scenarios are designed to resemble real-life situations you might encounter while driving.

Keep in mind that your primary goal is to identify potential hazards within these clips. Understand that hazards are situations that require you to take some form of action to avoid a potential accident or danger.

2. Study Hazard types

Dive deeper into understanding the different hazards that could appear in the test. These hazards encompass a wide range of possibilities. These include pedestrians suddenly crossing the road, vehicles braking unexpectedly, and obstacles obstructing the way.

It could also be the adverse weather conditions affecting visibility and even animals entering the road unexpectedly. Being aware of these hazards will make you better prepared to recognise them when they appear in video clips.

3. Watch real road situations

Become an astute observer of real-world road situations, whether you are a passenger, a pedestrian, or just an attentive observer. Pay close attention to how drivers react to unexpected events on the road. 

Moreover, while taking a driving lesson, you should observe their responses to sudden stops, unexpected lane changes, pedestrians darting across the street, or vehicles merging into traffic. This firsthand observation will help you develop an intuitive sense of identifying potential hazards.

4. Practice online simulations

Online platforms offer invaluable tools in the form of hazard perception practice tests. These simulations mirror the actual test conditions, allowing you to practice your hazard recognition skills in a controlled environment.

Engage with these simulations regularly to expose yourself to various driving scenarios. The more you practice, the more you refine your ability to spot hazards promptly and accurately.

5. Focus on timing 

Strike a balance between identifying hazards quickly and responding appropriately. Remember that timing matters – your aim is to recognise hazards as early as possible without prematurely responding to situations that might not develop into hazards. As you practice, find that sweet spot where your reactions are prompt and precise.

6. Stay calm and focused

When you are in the midst of the test, it is essential to remain composed. Nervousness can sometimes cloud your judgment or lead you to overthink. Keep in mind that the video clips are specifically designed to test your hazard perception skills.

Concentrate on the clips and the potential hazards within them. Ignore any external distractions and focus solely on your task.

7. Continuous revision

Consistency is key when it comes to improving your hazard perception skills. Allocate regular intervals for practice. Whether it is a few minutes every day or dedicated practice sessions weekly, continuous revision will help reinforce your abilities over time. Repetition is a powerful tool in building muscle memory for hazard recognition.

the bottom line

Remember that road safety begins with you. Equipping yourself with strong hazard perception skills helps you excel in the test and ensures you're a responsible and vigilant driver on the road.

If you are seeking professional guidance to navigate the driving world, look no further. Onroad Sydney Driving School is here to provide you with expert instruction and valuable insights. From perfecting your hazard perception skills to mastering the art of safe driving, Onroad Sydney Driving School is your partner in ensuring a secure and confident driving future.  

Get in touch today and let your journey to becoming a skilled driver begin!

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