No need to look in mirrors, the examiner has looked round to see if it is safe, which is why you must wait for the signal. Keep both hands on the wheel until you have stopped.
Do not “stand on the brakes” or try to lock the wheels, however, see comment re ABS that follows. Ultra-rapid reactions are not what is being looked for, just a controlled rapid stop, done without delay. A point about ABS, if your car is fitted with this, correct procedure is to put both clutch and brake pedals down together and harshly, otherwise, the ABS will not work properly.
The examiner will not mark you down for this. For those interested, see the various references to this in the DSA book “Driving, the Essential Skills”, and the DT1 document (Examiners’ “Bible” chapter 1) on the DSA website (DSA), navigate via publications then DT1 at the bottom.
I brought the car to a halt as quickly as I could. There was a slight squeal from the front wheels so I eased off the foot brake ever so slightly, my car is not fitted with ABS. It went quite well really.
Then, and only then, you can put the handbrake on if you want, or if you think it is needed to control the vehicle, like on a hill, don’t put it on until you have stopped.
The examiner will, however, without much delay, ask you to drive on when you are ready. Don’t forget rear observation when you get moving again, use mirrors and look behind you.
“Thank you, drive on when you’re ready, I won’t ask you to do that exercise again”. The last bit is said to avoid you doing another unwanted one later, due to any misunderstanding. He seemed to make some sort of mark on his sheet. I had been told not to be upset by this, it was probably nothing serious.