One common mistake can lead drivers to pay a hefty penalty this winter. As the clocks have turned back, drivers are warned in advance of driving dangers this winter which could result in a £1,000 fine, 3 points on their driving license, and even the disqualification of their license in some rare cases. As the winters are approaching, there is pressure on drivers to ensure that they remain cautious while they drive and follow all safety measures when out on the roads. This includes maintaining their vehicles properly, keeping windscreens and windows clean, and other necessary precautions. The Highway Code Section 6 also mentions that windows and windscreens must be kept clean so that they don’t obstruct the view.
Driving in low-setting sun is a major setback for drivers and it can be both dangerous for them and others on road. Not having proper control of the vehicle or dirty windows that cause any kind of obstruction to vision can lead to heavy penalties as per the UK laws. Harsh weather conditions, snow-laden roads, and driving in low sunlight all seem to not work in the favour of drivers. However, it’s their responsibility to take care of their safety and others on road. In such a scenario, drivers need to be extra alert and careful as failing to do so can be dangerous for their and other people’s lives.
In this regard, car experts, Vanarama warned the drivers to take utmost care while taking out their vehicle on roads as a small mistake can prove to be costly. Even the CEO and founder of Vanarama, Andy Anderson, advises drivers to keep enough distance between themselves and cars in front to avoid road accidents. According to him, drivers should make it a point to check if their windscreen is clean, wear polarised glasses, and maintain a safe distance between their vehicles and that of others.
There are a number of other tips that are shared by different experts to ensure safe driving during winter. It is also clearly stated in Regulation 30 of the Road Vehicles (1986) that vehicles should only be fitted with transparent window panes so that the vision of drivers is not obstructed while driving. It is also worth noting for drivers who park their vehicles under trees to ensure that no leaves or twigs get stuck to their windows and block the view.
Any damage done to your car due to dirty windows is also not covered under insurance. For instance, if a dirty windscreen is disclosed to be the reason behind an accident, the car insurance companies have the right to refuse to cover the damage under insurance. It will mean a double loss to drivers as they will have to get their car repaired and also pay a fine of £1,000. Therefore, this winter, drivers have to be really careful. It’s also advised by experts to stay at home as much as possible.
In wake of the ongoing news about hefty penalties on drivers this winter, many driving experts have shared safe driving tips for darker months. As per one of the experts, drivers are advised to use a tarp sheet to prevent their car from getting covered in snow. If that’s not possible, snow should be strictly scraped from car windows.
Similarly, Peter Vardy, the famous car dealership, has urged drivers to refrain from washing their cars with hot water as it can result in glass shattering due to temperature differences. It is further added that the roof of cars should be cleaned properly, as the snow from the roof could fall into the view of the driver.
Drivers are also suggested to use the windscreen clearing setting in their cars instead of using a cloth to wipe the windscreens every now and then as they are likely to become foggy often during this time. Since it is illegal to not de-ice your car, drivers are advised to do it regularly. Moreover, they are asked to use a proper purpose-based ice scraper for de-icing their cars.
Claire Rogan, from Peter Vardy, calls it a “legal responsibility” of drivers to ensure that their vehicles are ready for winter conditions. She agrees that the cold weather is quite inconvenient for drivers, but at the same time, she emphasized enough the risk involved in driving poorly maintained vehicles in winter.
Below is a quick summary of all important safety tips shared by some well-known driving experts to drive safely this winter.
• Invest in Tinted Windows: Although a bit costly, tinted windows are perfect for combating winter sunlight. Moreover, they can also help to keep your cars cooler in summer.
• Maintaining Proper Distance: Another tip shared by experts is to keep enough distance between your car and the car in front to avoid any road accidents.
• Be Extra Careful on Wet Roads: Drivers are urged to remain extra careful in wet road conditions as wet roads can reflect light, making it problematic for drivers to see. A solution to this is to drive slower and keep enough distance between vehicles.
• Turn on the Windscreen Clearing Setting: Drivers should either keep their windscreens clean at all times or turn on the windscreen clearing setting in their cars to avoid obstructed vision.
• Keep Spare Screenwash: Experts also advise drivers to always keep their screenwash liquid handy at all times. Make sure you fill it regularly or keep some spare washer bottles in your car.