What changes are being made to the Highway Code?
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With Britain expected to bathe in sunshine this weekend, motorists have been warned of massive fines they could receive for simply wearing sunglasses. This is if they prevent drivers from correctly operating a vehicle.
Driving experts say that while sunglasses are an essential eye protection accessory, some styles can restrict vision while driving.
For instance, some lenses might be tinted too dark and restrict daylight vision on the road.
Additionally, bulky frames can cause a blind spot, so drivers have been advised to test them out first or stick to using just the built-in car sun visors.
Currently, a driver who is found wearing inappropriate clothing that could restrict manoeuvring can face on-the-spot fines of £100 plus three penalty points.
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However, these fines can increase to £5,000 plus nine penalty points and even a driving ban if the case is taken to court.
According to Rule 97 of the Highway Code, “the clothing and footwear you choose to wear whilst you are driving must not prevent you from using the controls in the correct manner”.
Unfortunately for drivers, in some instances, they could also be fined for not wearing sunglasses.
Andrew Jervis from ClickMechanic said: “Many of us will welcome a few days of sun, but it could spell disaster for unprepared motorists.
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“We all have a responsibility to drive with care and attention, and we need to be on alert for anything that can affect our ability to do that.
“Sun glare is often tricky to drive with as it can affect how we perceive the road conditions, while an unexpected short burst of light from behind a cloud can really harm our ability to see.
“It can be worse when the roads are wet after a rainy spell, with sunlight reflecting off puddles and into our eyes.
“It’s important to be on guard for the adverse effects of sun glare while driving, whether this is through wearing sunglasses, removing any shiny objects from the dashboard or lowering the sun visors.”
With a lot of confusion surrounding different types of clothing and accessories, motoring experts have put together a list of rules surrounding them.
Here are some of them:
A long skirt or dress
Maxi dresses and skirts are in fashion, but when it comes to wearing this type of clothing while driving you could be faced with a fine and even penalty points on your licence. The material could get caught underneath the pedals or restrict your use of them, which is obviously far from ideal.
Very baggy jeans
For the same reason as above, if your jeans are too baggy they are likely to be unfit for driving in, meaning you could be penalised.
Thousands of motorists get behind the wheel every year in their flip-flops and sliders when the sun hits, but just how safe are they? Shoes with a thin sole, with less than 10mm in thickness, are classed as unsafe to drive in. Just remember, flip-flops are for the beach, not the driver’s seat.
Your footwear should not limit your ankle movement. Alastair Grier, Managing Director of CarMoney says “If you are planning on driving somewhere where the dress code is smart, we recommend you take a change of sensible shoes for the car ride”. According to the RAC, 40 percent of women have admitted to driving in high heels. Although they may look classy, high heels are simply not practical for the pedals.
If your slippers are open-backed, they are highly likely to be unsafe to drive in due to your feet being likely to slip out when using the pedals. Mr Grier said: “If your shoes do not provide enough grip to stop your foot from slipping off the pedals then they are classed as unsafe.”
Maxi dresses and skirts are in fashion, but when it comes to wearing this type of clothing while driving you could be faced with a fine and even penalty points on your licence.
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