There are NEW driving laws being introduced into the UK in 2019. But how will these affect you?
MOT rules

Following the alteration to the MOT rules that occurred in 2018, these are set to change once again in 2019.

The new rules would mean that if a car was found to have a recall against it, then it would instantly fail the annual roadworthiness test.

It has been suggested that there are around 2.39 million cars on the road with existing recalls against them.

There were changes to the MOT test in 2018 in which three new categories, Minor, Major and Dangerous were introduced. New checks and stricter testing of  vehicles was also introduced.

The new MOT rule is expected to be introduced sometime in 2019, although as yet, there is no indication of exactly when that may be.

Car tax

Well, it looks as though car tax rates will be increasing again in 2019 for the third consecutive year in the UK.

VED (Vehicle Excise Duty) will increase in line with inflation this year. This announcement was made in the 2018 Autumn budget.  This will be effective from 1st April 2019 for cars, vans, and motorcycles adding between £5 and £65 to the annual cost of your VED bill.

Based on their tax brand, here is what motorists can expect to pay:

76g/km and 150g/km CO2 – +£5

151-170 g/km CO2 – +£15

171-190g/km CO2 – +£25

191-225g/km CO2 – +£40

226-255g/km CO2 – +£55

255g/km CO2 – +£65

Highway Code

The Highway Code is set to be altered to accommodate a new rule relating to passing cyclists.

Under the new rules, there must be at least 1.5-metres (4ft 11 inches) between the driver and the cyclist when overtaking. Drivers that fail to leave at least this gap will be fined £100.

Smart motorways

Ignoring a red X closure sign on a smart motorway could see motorists landed with a £100 fine from this year! Often a red X can signify a lane closure due to an accident, therefore it is crucial that motorists don’t ignore these.

Graduated driving licence

It has been proposed that new drivers are given a graduated driving licence, which, if introduced, would impose certain restrictions in a bid to make them safer on the roads.

New drivers are the most inexperienced, therefore create the most risk on the roads. This proposal could help to reduce the number of accidents involving new and younger motorists.

The RAC believes that these could be some of the restrictions imposed:

  • Mandatory P plates – These are optional at present, however, could be made mandatory for up to two years
  • Passengers – There would be a limit to how many passengers are a new driver can have
  • Curfews – Times when they are allowed to be on the road
  • Speed – Lower speed limits for new drivers
  • Engine sizes – Restricted to how powerful their car can be
  • Alcohol – Lower limits for new drivers
Dutch reach

Less so a law change and more a suggestion by authorities is the ‘Dutch reach’ car door technique. The practice instructs drivers to use the hand furthest away from them to open their car door.

This forces you to glance behind you which should inform you if there is something behind you.

The reason for this is to prevent you from hitting cyclists, pedestrians or other cars.

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