With the days becoming shorter and the winter weather taking over the UK, drivers could be at risk of receiving a large fine if they make this mistake in these seasonal conditions.
Motorists could be hit with a £1,000 charge for not being visible when driving along the roads during poor weather. Although all modern cars made after 2011 are fitted with automatic ‘daytime running lights’ (DRLs) for visibility, it is important to remember that all drivers should switch on brighter lights when necessary. Those drivers who fail to do this, could be on the end of a large fine.
Often during the winter months, when someone is driving at night, road and weather conditions can lead to poor visibility. According to the Highway Code, all cars must have DRLs that switch on when the engine starts to help with road visibility and safety. It is then advised that drives must turn on the vehicle’s dipped headlights and brighter rear lights to help other road users.
What else could you get fined for this winter?
All drivers should now be aware that their visibility on the road is vitally important in poor weather conditions – and that it could end in a large fine. However, there are several other simple pieces of driving advice, that if ignored, could also end up in you getting a large penalty to pay, so here are some important ones to remember.
Lightbulbs in headlights, brake lights and any other part of your car can blow at any time – and this can lead to fines from the police. They can give you a £100 fine on the spot and three penalty points on your licence. The police may also issue a ‘vehicle defect rectification notice’, giving you 14 days to show that you’ve fixed the problem.
According to the Highway Code, the minimum tread depth for cars is 1.6 millimetres around the circumference of the tyre and through the central three quarters of tread width. Also, your tyres will be deemed illegal if they’re under or over inflated.
Should you get caught by the police you could be on the end of a £2,500 fine per tyre – meaning that you cold end up paying £10,000 in total. This could also lead to three penalty points per tyre. This could increase to 12 in total and a six-month disqualification for repeat offences within three years.
Damaged windscreen wipers
The Department for Transport explains that all windscreen wipers ‘must be properly adjusted and maintained in efficient working order’ and that failure to do so could lead to dangerous driving scenarios.
This could lead to a £2,500 fine and three penalty points. If you’re found to commit the offence (or one similar) twice within a three year span from the original offence, then you may be disqualified from driving for a minimum of six months.
According to Section 34 of the Road Vehicles Regulations 1986, cars must be fitted with a windscreen wiper and washer capable of cleaning your windscreen at all times.
The rule ensures that drivers have a clear view of the road. If your car has no washer fluid, you could be charged with careless driving, an offence where police have the power to issue an on-the-spot fixed penalty notice for £100 and three penalty points.
Windscreen cracks and chips
Damaged windscreens can have a serious impact on road safety. The Highway Code says that drivers should have a full view of the road ahead and glass should be maintained in a good condition. If a police officer decides you’re using a vehicle in dangerous condition, you could face a £2,500 fine and three points on your licence.
Wintery conditions create more scenarios where you can get a crack or chip in your windscreen. Get it sorted as soon as possible.
Did you know about any of these rules? Will you start being more aware of your surroundings when driving in dark and wintery conditions? Leave your comments below.