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The Simple Thank You Gesture That Could Land A £1,000 Fine

The Simple Thank You Gesture That Could Land A £1,000 Fine - News

  • Warning that motorists thanking someone by flicking on the hazard lights momentarily could result in a fine
  • The Highway Code states that drivers should not use hazard lights while driving unless warning someone behind them of an obstruction or hazard
  • Over the past ten years, over 13,000 car collisions were caused by motorists incorrectly using car signals

A thank you gesture often used on Britain's roads could actually lead to motorists being slapped with a £1,000 fine.

Indeed, the simple act of using a car's hazard lights as a thank you gesture may not be against the law, but it could result in a large fine due to it breaching The Highway Code.

Rule 116 of The Highway Code states that drivers 'must not use hazard warning lights while driving or being towed unless you are on a motorway or unrestricted dual carriageway, and you need to warn drivers behind you of a hazard or obstruction ahead.'

Dan Jones, operations manager at TrackDays.co.uk, warns drivers that in fact, being polite could cost a driver a lot: "One of the issues is that although the motorist you're responding to may understand the gesture, others may not be aware why your hazard lights are on."

"Pressing the hazard button is meant to be a warning to others that there is an obstruction or hazard they should be alert to. Incorrectly using it may cause someone else to suddenly brake and cause an accident."

In fact, a recent report by the Department for Transport (DfT) revealed that 13,559 car collisions over the last decade were caused by drivers failing to signal correctly or give a misleading signal.

Dan concludes: "The darker autumn and winter seasons makes it harder for drivers to see further ahead down the road which impacts hazard perception reactions."

"Us Brits tend to have a reputation for being overly polite and apologetic, so it is worth considering whether you really need to pop your hazards on if someone lets you out."

Visit our Driving Lessons page today on the Driving Experience website to browse and book from our range of driving sessions, including our Safer Driving Course to help with ensuring you are driving safely on the UK's roads.

22 November 2023
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