The beginning of a new year often brings some new laws along with it, and for 2023, there are a few new driving rules that all motorists in Scotland should be aware of.
Setting off on a journey without knowing about these regulations could mean that you're slapped with a fine or licence points, so it's worth brushing up on your knowledge before getting behind the wheel.
Used car buying service Choosemycar.com has pulled together a list of the new rules that drivers should keep in mind whilst behind the wheel, as well as some introduced last year that you might have missed.
Founder of the site Nick Zapolski said the new rules must be well-publicised or they may well catch drivers out.
He explained: "Changing clean air or low emission zones, or local speed limits, is a great idea to reduce pollution and lower accident levels. But local councils must make sure they are sufficiently publicising these changes, or many drivers will get caught out."
New driving rules for 2023
Clean Air Zones (CAZ) to be implemented in Scotland
Glasgow became the first city to use CAZ last year, but now it plans to install cameras to catch and monitor those vehicles which don’t meet its standards. However, don’t panic yet as enforcement won’t start until 2024, when other areas may also roll out CAZ.
Pavement parking could be banned
Campaigns have been underway for several years to ban parking on pavements in Scotland, and it was actually approved back in 2019. However, this year the ban may well come into place, meaning that Scotland will fall into line with London and Wales, where it’s already illegal to park on pavements.
Fuel duty likely to increase in March
While we’ve all been enjoying the slightly lower cost of fuel, plans are underfoot to raise fuel duty. The Government made the decision last year to lower tax on fuel by 5p for 13 months, but it is widely believed that this will be scrapped in the Spring, resulted in fuel going up by up to 12p per litre.
Older laws you might not know about
Using your aircon 'incorrectly'
The heatwave of last summer probably means most of us won’t fall foul of this rule - but Highway Code 237 insists that drivers keep their cars “well ventilated” at all times. Apparently, this is more to do with drowsiness than overheating, and if you’re deemed to be incorrectly ventilating your car, you could face a fine of up to £5,000.
Leaving animals in cars on hard shoulder
Most motorists are aware that if they break down on the motorway, they and their passengers should vacate the vehicle immediately and find a safe place to await help. But what many don’t know is that they can’t take any pets with them.
Rule 56 of the Highway Code states that pets cannot be on the hard shoulder in any circumstances; failure to comply can result in a fine of up to £2,500.
Drenching a pedestrian
Despite being depicted in many a TV or film comedy, it’s actually illegal to drench a pedestrian by driving through a puddle. Section 3 of the Road Traffic Act counts this act as “driving without reasonable consideration for other people” and can land you a £100 fine.
Parking your car after dark
One little known rule means that it’s illegal to park your car at the side of the road facing against the direction of traffic after dark. This is due to Highway Code 248, and going against this guidance can land you a fine of up to £2,500.
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