Everyone is aware of the routine offences like drink-driving, speeding and mobile phone usage. For instance, Drink Driving is a criminal offence that applies to every driver irrespective of their track record. But how many of you know about the bad habits which you picked up along the way, and which when left unaddressed could potentially land you in hot water. With the ever-changing nature of motor legislation in the country, you start to wonder if your seemingly alright driving behaviour could take you into a legal quagmire.
So, let’s look at some mostly overlooked driving misdeeds that could easily get you into trouble.
1. Eating and Drinking while you’re driving
Although eating or drinking while driving is not exactly deemed a severe crime when it comes to motor law, you could still get penalised for it. When you are behind the wheel, you are supposed to keep your eyes on the road. Getting distracted by things at the back of your mind while driving is one thing, but voluntarily engaging in activities like snacking, setting up a music playlist and applying makeup is punishable by law. These types of behaviour can potentially cause you to lose control of your driving licence and endanger the lives of people on the road. If you get caught you could face a hefty penalty.
2. Deliberately splashing pedestrians with water
While behind the wheel, drivers are expected to behave with basic decency that shows consideration for everyone on the road. Under no circumstances should you do something to inconvenience pedestrians. For instance, splashing a pedestrian with water could get you a ticket of up to £5000. Yes, that’s a massive fine to pay for a deed which you might have committed accidentally, you may think. But the idea is to safeguard pedestrians against the reckless driving that takes place during the rainy reason. It’s highly recommended that drivers exercise caution and drive responsibly in wet conditions.
3. Making phone payments at drive-through restaurants
Drivers everywhere in the country continue to use their mobile phones for making payment at drive-through restaurants despite being warned about legal consequences. It’s worth noting that most drivers do it either out of ignorance about the prevailing motor law or sheer disregard for regulation. Using your mobile phone for making any kind of payment at a drive-through restaurant is an illegal practice that could cost a fine amount of £1,000 and six penalty points. You can avoid the fine by making sure that you turn off the engine and put the hand brake on.
4. Using a dirty number plate for your vehicle
How often do you check the condition of your number plate? Driving around with an unclean and unreadable number plate can cost you a fine of £1,000. If those whopping figures don’t incentivise you to keep your number plate clean at all times, then we don’t know what else would. Of course, cars are going to get dirty one way or another, especially when you go for long drives, but you should never use it as an excuse to not clean your number plate. With people cracking down on cars carrying dirty number plates, drivers are advised to keep those plates clean and avoid a hefty fine.
5. Sleeping in your car while drunk
As we all know drink driving is illegal. but did you know you can actually get fined for simply sleeping in your car while drunk, even if you are not behind the wheel? If you feel that you are too intoxicated to drive your car, you should find someplace safe to sober up. The inside of a car is the last place you want to be if you want to sober up. As per motor laws, anybody in charge of a car should not be intoxicated. Now, even if you are sleeping in a car, you are still in charge of it, thus making you liable for a fine.
6. Forgetting to clear your windscreen
The windshield is an integral part of a vehicle. By using a damaged windshield you will compromise the safety of everyone travelling in it. The highway code prescribes that a driver should be able to see through all the glass panels of a vehicle with ease. Any types of cracks or damage to the windscreen can easily obstruct a clear view of the road. Hence, it is absolutely vital that you keep your windscreen in good clean and clear condition as it could considerably improve your visual abilities while driving. Also, always make a point of clearing and demisting the mirrors before you hit the road.
7. Taking drugs before driving
Taking prescription drugs before driving can impair your abilities to drive. There are driving limits in place for a host of prescription drugs. Intoxicating effects of drugs on drivers can be just as severe as alcohol consumption. Taking drugs like codeine can even get you banned from driving. Drug-driving laws in the UK strictly forbid the use of drugs like heroin and cocaine. More importantly, there are various prescription drugs that fall into the banned drug classification. Even if these drugs are perfectly legal to be consumed by patients, being under their influence while driving can lead to a drug-driving fine.
Following are some legal drugs you should stay away from while driving:
8. Driving too slow
While driving too fast can lead to fatal road accidents, driving too slow, also known as ‘crawling’, can serve as a major threat to motorists. If you are simply noodling around in town with no rush to reach anywhere, then you can find yourselves in just as much trouble as drivers on speed rampages. Based on the reports published by the Department for Transport, slow drivers are responsible for causing about 140 accidents every year. If you are caught ‘crawling’, you can be charged penalised with 9 points and a fine.
Driving-law is an online resource with detailed information and advice for drivers covering all aspects of motoring law. Our free resources can help you find information on most of the common driving offences and our paid-for services will give you absolute clarity when it comes to analysing allegations which may lead to a conviction or provide advice on the most appropriate way in which to mitigate penalties.
If you have any doubts regarding driving laws in the UK, you can Book a FREE Consultation with the motor law experts at Driving Law. We offer a whole range of paid-for services covering various aspects of motor regulations.