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5 Changes to Motoring Law 2018

A number of new driving changes were introduced and are set to impact the way that both new and experienced motorists drive on the roads.

MOT changes

This will be the year that it becomes harder to pass your MOT, due to tougher emissions tests. Vehicles will now be rated in three categories: dangerous, major and minor. Those cars given a “major” or “dangerous” rating will automatically fail.

Additional criteria to be introduced effects vehicles with diesel filters, with filters that look like they’ve been removed or tampered with granted an automatic fail. Filters that give out visible smoke of any cooler will also be considered a major fault and an automatic fail. As for other rules, a steering box leaking oil is a minor fault but if it is dripping a lot it will be moved to the major category.

MOT rules coming into force could leave drivers with a huge £2,500 fine.

Beware using a phone for navigation

Most people are aware that driving and using a phone is illegal. If you are found to be using your phone as you drive you could receive a £1000 fine, or £200 with six points if you’re given a fixed penalty notice. It should be noted that you can also get three points if you have an obstructed view of the road. So, don’t be tempted to play with your phone whilst driving.

Even when in a mount it’s not legal to use your phone, this is why Sat Navs are great as they provide you with directions without causing too much distraction. Modern sat navs also feature alerts about heavy traffic.

Learners on the motorway

Learner drivers will be allowed to take lessons on the motorway, as long as they are with an approved instructor and in a car with dual controls. This has been introduced with the aim of getting new drivers ready for the motorways. We have recently written an article regarding this topic, check it out if you’re looking for some more information.


Motorways are administering official fixed penalties if you drive in a lane marked with a cross. This was already illegal but it’s now punishable with three points and a £100 fine. ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) cameras will be monitoring for the misuse of the hard shoulder and can impose automatic penalties.

Pavement parking

A nationwide pavement parking ban has been proposed in the UK. This has been looked into in order to make roads more accessible for pedestrians with pushchairs or in wheelchairs. Currently pavement parking is only illegal in London but under the new laws, it could become illegal to park on the pavement, unless the car has been granted explicit permission, across the country.

Changes to driving tests

Changes to the driving in December 2017, various changes were made to the driving test. These included increasing the time of independent driving (up from 10 minutes to 20), where the person taking the test is asked to follow directions on a sat nav, as well as changed to man-oeuvres and knowledge of car functions.

You’ll now be tested on one of the following three man-oeuvres: parallel park at the side of the road; park in a bay – either driving in and reversing out or reversing in and driving out; pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse for two car lengths and reentering traffic. The final change can be found within the test section You are still asked the ‘tell me’ question at the start of the test but the ‘show me’ question is asked during the test – for example, demonstrating you know how to use the windscreen wipers.

Here at Speed Couriers, we keep you up to date with the latest information on our roads. Stay up to date with our blog for more.

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