IF YOU spend a lot of time on motorways and A roads you may have noticed something odd about the road signs. Many direction signposts include a square, circle, triangle or diamond - symbols which have long baffled motorists. Here's what they mean and how to use them on the road.What do the symbols mean? An urban legend suggests the shapes are secret symbols to guide the great and good to the nearest bunker in a nuclear attack. But there is actually a much less sinister explanation behind the mysterious markers. The symbols direct traffic onto emergency diversion routes in the event of a road closure. There are eight variations of the symbol for up to eight different exits or alternative routes. How do they work? Some motorway and A road signs will permanently display a designated symbol for each or some of the exits. Other signs have a trigger that unfolds a panel showing a symbol when there is a road closure. Temporary yellow-coloured diversion signs are then put up by the police … [Read more...] about Here’s what the yellow box symbols mean on motorway and A road signs – and no, they’re not for a nuclear disaster
THOUSANDS of Brits are risking a fine up to £1,000 and a failed MOT because of illegal registration plates. Number plates designed to add "personalisation" to your motor are invalid and could land you in hot water with cops. Here are the important rules and regulations to bear in mind when you customise your plates.Is your number plate legal? While buying an approved personalised reg is fine, carefully placed bolts or tweaking the spacing to spell out a message is illegal. Under law, plates must be legible and conform to a set standard so they're easy to read as they provide essential info about your vehicle to insurers, police and other drivers. Failing to do this can land you with the hefty fine, a failed MOT and the loss of the plate. In a bid to cull the numbers of drivers out on the roads with dodgy plates, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and traffic officers are cracking down.What are the five mistakes that could get you fined? To help drivers stay on the … [Read more...] about Is your number plate legal? Five mistakes that could see you fined up to £1,000 and fail your car’s MOT
THE UK is set to be hit by a flurry of snow and drivers could be in danger of a fine if they don't clear it properly from their car. While many drivers know about clearing ice and snow from the windscreen, they don't know you can still be penalised even if the covering has no impact on their vision. Can you get a fine for driving with snow on your car? If you're caught by police driving with snow still on your car (even on the roof), or an officer sees it fall onto the road from your vehicle, you can be given a £60 fine and have three penalty points added to your licence. The fine falls in line with section 229 of the Highway code which outlines correct guidelines for driving in adverse weather conditions. The rule states that drivers must "remove all snow that might fall off into the path of other road users". This could pose a potential hazard for other drivers. What do the experts say about driving with snow on your car? A representative from the AA said that drivers could … [Read more...] about How leaving snow on your car roof can land you THREE penalty points on your driving license and a £60 fine
THE nightmare of dealing with frozen windscreens is back for another year as the UK is set to be struck by snow. It means more motorists are now running the risk of a fine by using this common technique to de-ice their cars. Is leaving your car engine idle an illegal way of de-icing your car? Leaving your engine running while your car is stationary on the road could land you in hot water. Stationary idling is an offence under section 42 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, which means leaving the car running with the heater on the windscreen is off-limits. The Act enforces rule 123 of the Highway Code which states: "You must not leave a vehicle engine running unnecessarily while that vehicle is stationary on a public road." And if a fine is not enough to deter you - or you're lucky enough to have a driveway - there's an even better reason not to leave your motor running. What is the penalty for leaving your car with its engine running? If you are caught by a copper you will be slapped with a … [Read more...] about Is it illegal to leave your car engine idle to de-ice the windscreen, can you get a fine and how’s your insurance affected?
DRIVING in the snow can be hugely difficult on its own, let alone having to worry about breaking the law. But these seemingly innocent practices are to be avoided if you would rather not get slapped with a fine or violate the terms of your insurance. Defrosting your car - the lazy way Nipping out to switch your engine on early may seem like a clever way to make your car comfy and defrost the windscreen. But you can invalidate your insurance if you leave the motor running unattended. That is because most brokers will refuse to pay out if drivers fail to live up to their "duty of care" — a common clause in contracts. Michael Lloyd, the AA’s insurance director, said: "Every winter we get reports of members’ cars that have disappeared off drives. The fact is that the keys are the weakest link in the car security chain and leaving your car unattended, unlocked and with the keys in in it is simply inviting it to be stolen. "If it is ticking over, warming up, it makes … [Read more...] about How to drive in the snow without breaking the law – from removing snow on your car roof to de-icing the windscreen