What is legal behind the wheel? Many drivers don't know

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Do you know what's legal behind the wheel? A recent survey by dealership group Robins & Day found that many drivers don't really know what we legally can and can't do while driving -- risking fines of up to £1,000.

The survey found that 26% of motorists think it's legal to use the car horn when stationary, but the Highway Code states that drivers must not use their horn in stationary traffic or aggressively. Fines for this can range from £30 up to £1,000.

Meanwhile, 55% of respondents said it's illegal to eat food at the wheel, but in fact this is legal unless it distracts the driver and causes careless driving. Then, it can result in a fixed penalty of three points and a £100 fine.

Nearly 8% of the 1,000 drivers surveyed think it's fine to throw an apple core or banana skin out of the window, but this is classed as littering, and can carry a £75 fixed penalty fine. Meanwhile, splashing pedestrians with a puddle and can lead to a £100 fixed penalty.

Sleeping in your car is OK, as long as it's parked legally -- unless you are drunk. In the survey, 11% of motorists believed sleeping in your car while drunk is perfectly fine -- but in fact, you could be found to be 'in charge' of the vehicle while inebriated. This could lead to a fine, points on your licence, and even a driving ban.

Most of those questioned are aware that using a handheld mobile phone behind the wheel is an offence -- but did you know that includes mobile payment? Paying for fast food at a drive-thru using Apple Pay or Android Pay could potentially result in a £1,000 fine, Robins & Day warned.

But on the other hand, there were various things respondents to the survey thought were illegal when behind the wheel but which are perfectly legal. These include wearing headphones, playing loud music, and driving with your interior light on.

Did any of these come as a surprise to you? Do you think the law is about right?







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