New DVLA rules and driving laws coming in 2022
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As the colder weather creeps in, and with UK motorists already worried about increased living costs, Graham Conway, Managing Director at Select Car Leasing has put together five key winter driving fines motorists need to be aware of this year to minimise any unexpected costs.
Cold weather charging
The batteries in electric vehicles are impacted by cold weather.
When the mercury drops, the chemical and physical reactions that take place inside a lithium-ion battery begin to slow down.
As a result, drivers can expect overnight charging to take slightly longer in cold weather, and, similarly, rapid charging could take longer than the usual 20-30 minutes.
With all this in mind, motorists might be slightly pushed for time and in a greater rush during the winter months if they’re EV owners.
But it’s important that drivers don’t succumb to the urge to increase their pace on the road.
Mr Conway stressed that being in too much of a rush could also result in dangerous driving, an unlimited fine and a driving ban.
If drivers know that their EV’s range and charging capabilities might be impacted by the colder weather, they need to make sure they plan their time accordingly.
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Colder weather causes tyre pressure to fall.
Tyre manufacturer Continental suggests that for every temperature decrease of 10C, tyres will lose between one to two PSI (Pounds per Square Inch) of pressure, which is enough to be detrimental to the car’s handling and stopping capabilities.
It’s recommended in the winter months that drivers check their tyre pressure at least once a week, or they could be fined £2,500 and handed three penalty points for each tyre that fails to meet tyre pressure regulations, if faulty tyres are a contributing factor in an accident.
Drivers may already be aware that leaving snow and ice on the windscreen or roof can result in a fine, but if they don’t clear their registration plate, they could be facing up to £1,000 in fines.
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A concealed registration plate, whether covered in snow or dirt from the roads, is considered an obstruction to the police as they use the registration plates to check if cars are properly taxed, insured and have a valid MOT.
Drivers could be found guilty of careless driving and face a discretionary ban or up to nine penalty points if snow and ice cause motorists to have an accident on the road.
Mr Conway said: “If the police or other road users consider that a car owner has been driving without reasonable consideration for others, even if they’ve been driving slowly if they lose control of their vehicle on a slope, bend or on black ice, they may be charged with careless driving.”
The Highway Code states drivers should consider clothing and footwear that don’t prevent them from using the controls in the correct manner.
Violating this code can result in a £1,000 fine and three points on the driving licence.
While there is no specific rule that states what drivers can and cannot wear, items of clothing like padded winter coats or festive jumpers that have 3D elements could restrict movement, affecting the ability to drive.
Other common winter clothing like boots, hats and gloves can also impact driving ability. So, when possible, it’s best to take these items off before driving and place them in the back of the car.
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