It is frequently the case that the Motoring Offences Team at Kangs Solicitors encounters clients who have either forgotten or have never appreciated some basic driving requirements throughout those months when driving is frequently conducted in dark, misty, frosty, wet conditions or a combination of several of them.
Car drivers should be aware of their legal obligations and Sukhdip Rhandawa of Kangs Solicitors mentions some of them.
- Lights should be clearly visible in the daytime with brake lights always working. Constant and unnecessary braking may be considered to be inconsiderate driving.
- Headlights and fog lights should be used when visibility is reduced but drivers must avoid dazzling other motorists.
- When dipped headlights are used in poor weather conditions, they should be turned off when the weather improves as failure to do so could be regarded as inconsiderate driving.
- Headlights at night should be used between one half hour after sunset and one half hour before sunrise.
- They should be dipped in built up areas including when approaching other road users such as pedestrians, cyclists or horse riders.
- These should always be maintained in working order and kept clean.
- The use of a vehicle with defective brake lights may result in Police action including:
- A Fixed Penalty Notice – £60 fine and three points on your licence.
- A Vehicle Defect Rectification Notice – 14 days to fix the fault and provide proof of the fix.
- Your car taken off the road immediately.
- Hazard lights should only be used where the vehicle is completely stationary, perhaps due to a breakdown.
- They should not be used as an excuse to drive illegally, dangerously or for illegal parking.
- Where visibility is at a minimum, fog lights should be used.
- However, fog lights should not be used where there is clear visibility, especially at night when other drivers may be easily dazzled.
- Illegal use could be construed to be dangerous or could result in a non endorseable Fixed Penalty Notice involving a £50 fine.
- Windows should be kept clean at all times.
- Where vehicles are fitted with tinted windows, at least 75% of light should be allowed through the front windows and 70% through the front side windows.
- There is no rule in relation to rear passenger windows.
- Breach of these requirements may lead to insurance being invalidated and vehicle seizure.
- Windscreen cracks, depending on the size, could be construed as dangerous or could lead to a number of different motoring offences being committed.
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