5 driving laws you didn’t know you were breaking

A recent government report from the Department of Transport has shown a range of statistics which highlight the current dangers on our roads. In 2018, there were 160,378 injuries reported due to road traffic accidents (RTA). Of those 160,378 incidents, there were 1,782 reported deaths. While casualities seem to be decreasing year on year, this could be because the government and policing authorities are cracking down on dangerous driving to make roads safer.

If you’ve ever flicked though the Highway Code you’ll know just how many things drivers need to remember, but there are some laws people still don’t know they are breaking.


Recently, the punishment for not wearing a seatbelt has changed. Previously, drivers and/or passengers who were found in a moving vehicle without a seatbelt on would have been fined at least £100. This has transformed into the driver potentially losing their licence due to the increase in points they can receive.

Seatbelts haven’t always been an important element within the car. Back in 1983, seatbelts were made mandatory to include during manufacture, but actually wearing them to the individual’s discretion. It’s a good thing that our laws and safety regulations have come a long way since then.

Not clearing your windscreen before driving

With the winter months drawing in, this is one of those laws that people are aren’t aware of. If you are caught driving while peering through a small clear spot because the rest of your windscreen isn’t clear, or you have snow, frost or even dirt clouding your view out of any of your windows or mirrors, you could land yourself in trouble.

Paying with your phone at a drive-through restaurant

The rise of online banking has brought the ability to directly pay with our phones. While this use of technology helps make our lives easier, it can be a danger also. Just as though driving on the phone is strictly not allowed, using your phone to pay at drive-throughs falls under that same title.

If you are caught using your contactless payment to get your tasty treat while your engine is running and the handbrake has not been applied, you could find yourself with a £1,000 fine or six points on your licence. Is it really worth the risk?

Letting pets out of the car if you’re broken down on the hard shoulder

As stated in the Highway Code, if you break down on the motorway and manage to get yourself over to the hard shoulder, you should stand on the verge away from your car.

However, this doesn’t apply to your furry best friend who may be in the car with you. Unless there’s a real emergency, your pet should be left within the vehicle if you have pulled over on the hard shoulder ad failing to do so could land you with a driving offence charge.

Driving too slowly

The most common driving offence has to be speeding, but did you know that it’s actually just as dangerous to drive too slowly? While there is no such thing as a minimum speed limit in the UK, slow driving can be hazardous, causing disruption to other motorists.

The maximum penalty for driving slowly – nine points or an unlimited fine.

As the number of penalties continues to remain high, it could be that other seemingly smaller driving laws could have their punishment increased as well. The best thing to do is to be aware and be safe.

Have you been seriously injured during a road traffic accident and need advice or representation? Get in touch with our team at Lysander law for more information.