BIGGEST CHANGE IN TRAFFIC POLICING FOR DECADES BEGINS TODAY
August 16 2013.


Fixed penalty notices for careless driving offences such as middle lane hogging come into effect today (Friday 16 August 2013), according to road safety charity IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists).

Following a government consultation announced in June, the £100 fine will be introduced for a wide range of careless driving offences including tailgating and middle lane hogging.

The IAM advise that in car distractions that cause you to swerve or drive badly could lead to prosecution, you don't have to inconvenience other road users to be issued with a ticket. Some typical examples of careless driving are:

- overtaking on the inside;

- driving inappropriately close to another vehicle;

- inadvertently driving through a red light;

- emerging from a side road into the path of another vehicle;

- tuning a car radio; when the driver was avoidably distracted by this action;

- selecting and lighting a cigarette or similar when the driver was avoidably distracted by that use.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said: "If the police target the worst and most persistent offenders, this could be good news for road safety. If, however, it just becomes another numbers game with thousands of careless driving tickets issued then the impact will be limited. The IAM believes that driver retraining courses have a much bigger potential to actually improve poor driving than simply issuing a standard fine and should always be offered as the first stage of prosecution."