The new driving laws you might have missed

by admin | Posted on Saturday, August 27th, 2016

With so many driving laws that UK motorists need to be aware of, you may have missed some of the new regulations that have been introduced over the past year or so.

driving laws

Join Pass ‘N’ Go as we guide you through the new UK driving laws to ensure that you steer clear of a fine, penalty points or even a prison sentence.

Stricter drug driving laws

The UK introduced stricter drug driving laws on March 2nd 2015, which looked to combat those driving while under the influence of both legal and illegal drugs.

As a result, the illegal drugs which are covered under the new law include the following:

  • Cannabis
  • Cocaine
  • Ecstasy
  • Heroin
  • Ketamine

Meanwhile, prescribed drugs found to be more prone to abuse include the following:

  • Diazepam
  • Flunitrazepam
  • Temazepam

Saying goodbye to the paper counterpart of the driving licence

Since 1998, motorists in the UK have been issued with both a photocard driving licence and a paper counterpart driving licence. On June 8th 2015 though, it was ruled that paper counterpart driving licences would no longer be issued across the country.

As a result, you will only need a photocard driving licence — or a paper driving licence if this was issued before 1998. All information about your existing penalty points and the status of your licence will now be held on a DVLA database.

Speed limits rise for HGVs

From April 2015, drivers of HGVs were given the opportunity to drive legally at higher speed limits across England and Wales. The revised speed limits are as follows:

  • The speed limit for HGVs on single carriageways in England and Wales increased from 40mph to 50mph.
  • The speed limit for HGVs on dual carriageways in England and Wales increased from 50mph to 60mph.

No smoking when in a vehicle that is carrying a child

As of October 1st 2015, it was deemed an offence for adults to smoke in a vehicle that is carrying an individual under the age of 18 years old.

If any person in the vehicle fails to obey this law, the driver will be at risk of a fine that can range from £60 all the way up to £10,000. There is also a chance that they will face penalty points on their licence.

Changes to the rules regarding car tax

You are very likely to have noticed by now that you no longer receive a paper tax disc to display on your car’s windscreen when paying for car tax—this information is now held by the police on a national computer.

However, you might not have realised that you can no longer transfer tax to a new owner when selling a car. Gone are the days when used vehicles were advertised as being taxed then.


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