Motorists have been told how to drive correctly on motorways to avoid being slapped with fines of £5000. Experts advise drivers to brush up on their understanding of motorway rules or risk hefty penalties.
A motorway is a significant road explicitly built for fast travel over long distances with multiple lanes, so rules and laws vary compared to usual roads.
Motorway offences include breaking the 70mph speed limit, tailgating and lane hogging, and drivers caught out could be prosecuted for careless or dangerous driving if taken to court.
If a motorway offence has endangered others or caused an accident, penalties could increase to a £5,000 fine, a driving disqualification and prison sentences.
Tim Alcock from LeaseCar.uk said: “Driving on a motorway can be intimidating because of the higher speed limits, multiple lanes, and general fear of accidents.
“Brushing up on driving laws and the Highway Code can not only help ease anxiety when it comes to driving on the motorway but also help to stay safer on the roads.
“Taking the time to remind yourself of must-know motorway laws will also minimise the risk of hefty fines and penalties.
“Many drivers will be surprised to know that any offences which could endanger others or cause an accident could lead to a careless or dangerous driving charge, with penalties including a £5,000 fine and a prison sentence.”
Six Motorway Offences Which Carry Hefty Penalties:
Anyone caught travelling over 70mph on a motorway is breaking the law. Penalties for speeding on the highway are usually £2500. Still, more serious cases will lead to careless or dangerous driving charges, which carry more serious penalties such as a driving ban or £5000 fine.
Going Too Slow
Driving too slowly is a hazard, creating congestion and promoting unsafe overtaking and tailgating. In extreme cases, drivers could be disqualified, given an unlimited fine, and three to 11 points on their licence if charged with careless and inconsiderate driving. However, a fixed penalty notice of £100 to £200 is more common.
Even if a motorist has gone the wrong way, driving back up the slip road could lead to a fine of £2500, three penalty points and a discretionary disqualification. Driving in reverse on the motorway also faces the same penalties.
Middle lane hogging is listed under offences of ‘driving without due care and attention.’ However, in most cases, it is three points and an FPN of £100, although some police forces may offer a driver education course as an alternative.
Tailgating is considered careless driving and usually carries a £100 fine and penalty points. However, if a serious collision occurred due to tailgating, it could result in a driving ban or a prison sentence.
Under rule 268 of the Highway Code, it is strongly discouraged to overtake on the left or move lanes on the left to overtake. Overtaking on the left is lawful in some circumstances, including if someone is hogging the middle lane, but motorists could be prosecuted for careless driving.