4th February 2019

Unfortunately those cold frost mornings are back. Those of us up early and driving to work are often faced with having to scrape car windows.

It can be tempting to clear just enough windscreen to see before driving off and letting the car heater defrost the rest. Obviously this is far from a good idea. Not only are you at risk of an accident being possibly unable to see other vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists but you could also be breaking the law.

If you fail to properly clear your car windows you may be prosecuted for failing to have a clear view of the road. The offence carries a penalty of 3 points on a driver’s licence and a £100 fine.

Other offences include leaving a car engine running while you scrape the car windows. You can be hit with a £20 fine rising to £40 if not paid within 2 weeks if you leave a parked vehicle unattended with the engine running.

And remember to clean your number plates! Number plates need to be capable of being read. Authorities are keen to enforce this because Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras struggle to read dirty/obscured plates. This offence can result in a fine of up to £1000.

Finally if you are running late do not opt for breakfast at the wheel. There is no specific criminal offence of eating at the wheel but if you take your eyes off the road you could face a charge of careless driving resulting in a fine and an endorsement of between 3 and 9 penalty points or a disqualification.

If you receive a summons or otherwise find yourself being prosecuted for a driving offence our specialist criminal defence solicitors are happy to advise on all road traffic matters. Please contact Sophie Cohen, Alastair Naismith, Paul Green or Mark Richardson to discuss further.