Baffled Brits in the dark about basic rules of the road

Baffled Brits in the dark about basic rules of the road
Baffled Brits in the dark about basic rules of the road

Millions of British drivers admit to being ignorant of even basic motoring laws, according to new research.

Even those who have been driving for years are leaving themselves vulnerable to prosecution for everything from speeding to using their horn incorrectly because they have forgotten the rules or think they know better.

The study by insurer 1st Central found that a third of drivers didn’t even know the correct speed limit on a dual carriageway – wrongly guessing that it is 60mph rather than the correct 70mph.

Even more drivers were ignorant of the rules around child seats, with 44 per cent wrongly thinking that children need to use a special seat until they are 14.

And 32 per cent can’t correctly identify the basic “mirror, signal, manoeuvre” sequence, wrongly thinking that signal comes first.

Nearly one in 10 are also risking driving without insurance because they think their policy remains valid for a period even if they don’t have an MOT.

Changing rules

One in 10 drivers blames forgetfulness for their ignorance but twice as many say that changes in regulations since they passed their test are to blame.

The study found that most drivers chose to ignore the rules even when they are aware of them. Nine in 10 men admitted to using their own rules because they think they know better, as did three quarters of women.

Commenting on the research, Andy James, CEO at 1st Central, said: “Whilst experienced drivers may be comfortable behind the wheel, it’s concerning to see how many people have forgotten speed limits, or don’t understand how car insurance works in relation to the other key legal requirements needed to be road worthy.

“No matter how many years of driving you have under your belt, it’s important to remember the correct rules of the road to ensure a safe drive for all.”

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