With UK motoring laws constantly changing, it’s hard for drivers to keep up – especially if you passed your test a long time ago.

However, in the eyes of the law, naivety isn’t an excuse. So to help you avoid a fine or penalty points, we’ve included seven obscure motoring laws you might have either forgotten or simply didn’t know about.

See how many you know…

Switching off your engine

Did you know, according to The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, you must switch off your engine when your vehicle is stationary?

While this law doesn’t apply when you are sitting in a traffic jam, it does when you are sitting in your car waiting to pick someone up. Failure to do so can result in a £20 on-the-spot fine and can be even more in some areas of London.

The rules around mobile phone use

In March 2022, the law changed around using a mobile phone, sat nav, or tablet while driving a car or riding a motorcycle. The definition of ‘using a mobile device’ while driving was previously restricted to making calls and texts. However, in today’s technological age, ‘using a device’ has now expanded to include various actions such as illuminating the screen, unlocking the device, and checking notifications.

Currently, the only exceptions to using a phone while driving are making calls to emergency services or making a contactless payment when the car is stationary i.e. while at a drive-thru. You can find more details on the mobile phone law change here.

Splashing pedestrians with puddles

There’s nothing more frustrating than when some person thinks it’s funny to drive through the biggest puddle and splash you on the side of the road. Well, it turns out the joke could be on them! This act is deemed as ‘driving without due care or consideration’ and can land the accused with three penalty points and a fine ranging from £100-£5,000!

Clearing snow from your roof

That’s right, simply clearing the snow off your windscreen isn’t enough. The main reason behind this is that snow and ice can fall off and obstruct your own view and other drivers around you. Failing to remove it from your car roof can result in a cold £60 fine and three penalty points.

Sleeping in your car while intoxicated

A night on the tiles doesn’t always end up the way you want it to. Whatever the reason, taking a crafty nap in your car while under the influence of alcohol can lead to a minimum (yes minimum) of ten penalty points and a possible hefty fine.

So before you get the first round of shots in, you might want to make sure you’ve got somewhere to stay afterwards.

Flashing your headlights

If you’re caught flashing your headlights to passing drivers to warn them about an upcoming speed trap, you could find yourself in a spot of bother. While to some, it’s an act of goodwill, the law sees it as obstructing an officer’s duty. Being caught can cost you between £30 and £1,000.

Driving too slowly

Drivers who are caught going too slow can also be pulled over by the police and penalised for ‘careless driving’. Depending on the circumstances, the result could be anything from a verbal warning to a maximum of nine penalty points!

For more information on the latest Highway Code and motoring laws, click here.