Have you read the updated Highway Code?
An AA survey is suggesting more than three-fifths of UK motorists have not read the changes that came into force in January.
The changes saw 10 sections of The Highway Code updated, with 50 rules added or updated. They effect all types of road user and aim to improve the safety of people walking, cycling and riding horses.
Key changes to The Highway Code include:
- Hierarchy of road users – those road users most at risk in the event of a collision have been placed at the top of the hierarchy, e.g. pedestrians.
- Updates on safe passing distances and the speeds for people driving when overtaking more vulnerable road users – this includes when overtaking people walking in the road, cycling or people riding horses or driving horse-drawn vehicles.
- Priority at junctions – when people are crossing or waiting to cross at a junction, other traffic should give way.
- Safely opening doors – drivers and passengers should open the door using their hand farthest to the door they are opening, making them turn their head to look over their shoulder.
With several of the rules clarifying the hierarchy and priority for particular road users, the fact that potentially so many aren’t aware of the code changes is worrying.
“It is important that all road users are aware of The Highway Code.” Comments Chris Brown, Partner and head of motoring at Fosters Solicitors.
“It is often viewed as something you only need to read when you’re learning to drive, but as this latest update shows, ongoing changes can have a significant impact on how we should all be using the road.
“Many of the rules The Highway Code contains are legal requirements and failure to follow the new rules could itself form evidence of driving without due care and attention, an offence that can have severe consequences for a driving licence.
“We therefore welcome more awareness surrounding the changes, which will hopefully lead to more people taking the opportunity to refresh their understanding of the rules and how they might apply to them, whether as a pedestrian, cyclist or driver.”
For more information on the changes to The Highway Code, please visit gov.uk.
Fosters Solicitors are available to provide expert legal advice regarding these road rule changes, please contact us directly by calling 01603 620508, or follow the links to our relevant services below.
Contact our Motoring offence specialists – find out more about our motoring services.
This article was produced on the 6th September 2022 for information purposes only and should not be construed or relied upon as specific legal advice.