This Month’s New Driving Rules
Buckle up and get up to date with this month’s new driving rules. As lockdown eases there have been a few changes to driving in the U.K. so don’t get caught out.
From raising the fines on mobile phone use when driving to increased road tax for petrol and diesel vehicles. Have a look through our guide and make sure you’re ahead of the game.
Penalty points and even fines could be on the cards, so it’s definitely worth a look at what’s changed.
Fuel Duty Freeze
Ok, let’s start off with a positive! Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced at this year’s budget a fuel duty freeze. After initially considering a 5P per litre increase, he backed down due to people’s reliance on cars during the pandemic.
The tax on a litre of fuel currently is 57.95p, which will stay unchanged for the next ten years.
In a drive towards more eco-friendly streets in Britain, the U.K. Energy Research Centre has proposed a raised tax for the purchase of petrol and diesel cars.
The hike in tax is to make environmentally-friendly vehicles more affordable. Petrol and Deisel cars emitting over 225 grams of Co2 per KM (cubic meter) will be required to pay a 50% purchase tax from this year. We’re not entirely sure how much this tax is at the moment.
Larger Fines For Mobile Phone Users
Motorists could now face larger fines and more penalty points if caught using their mobile phones when driving. The fine has been increased to £200 pounds and SIX penalty points on your licence.
Remember, if you have just passed your test within the last two years, 6 points is enough to lose your licence. Get caught now, you’ll have your theory and practical tests to sit again.
A revision to the wording of the law is also planned. It will now include “other hand-held interactive communication devices” such as tablets, gaming devices and electronic notepads.
Local Clean Air Zones
In an aim to lower pollution in certain areas, local clean air zones have been introduced.
Motorists in cities such as Bath and Birmingham could face extra daily charges. Birmingham will charge £8 per day and a clean air zone in Bristol is also being considering.
The development of self-drive cars is starting to make an appearance. Although not as far ahead as predicted back in 2018 the driverless car certainly looks like it’s taking a step forward.
The department for transport has announced new ALKS lane-changing technology could be seen in vehicles as early as spring 2021. Autocar has some great detail here on ALKS technology and for more information on driverless cars have a look at The best autonomous car developers in the world.
This last proposed change is likely to affect us the most. A recent review found that a third of visually impaired people and nearly half of wheelchair users are less willing to go out alone due to anti-social pavement parking.
As it stands at the moment parking on pavements in England is only illegal or a must not in the highway code in London. Everywhere else is only a should not, which means you would not receive a fine for it at the moment.
New laws expected to be rolled out this year will ban parking on pavements across the whole of England. The new law is in response to complaints from people that rely on pavements to travel.
If the law is introduced you could get a £70 fine for leaving a couple of wheels up on the curb.