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Fines and points for middle-lane motorway drivers

  Friday, 5 July 2013

Motorway drivers who hog the middle lane will face on-the-spot fines and license points under new laws which are expected to be implemented by the Government.

The prospective laws will give police the ability to penalise drivers for other poor driving practises like tailgating, queue jumping or using the wrong lane on a roundabout.

Fixed penalty notices of £100 will be accompanied by three penalty points, in a similar fashion to other motoring offences.

The Government will also increase the fixed penalty fine given to motorists using mobile phones at the wheel, from £60 to £100; the penalty for driving without insurance is also likely to double.

“Careless drivers are a menace and their negligence puts innocent people’s lives at risk,” said Transport minister Stephen Hammond.

“That is why we are making it easier for the police to tackle problem drivers by allowing them to immediately issue a fixed penalty notice rather than needing to take every offender to court.

“We are also increasing penalties for a range of driving offences to a level which reflects their seriousness and which will ensure that they are consistent with other similar penalty offences,” he added.

For years fair playing motorists have been frustrated by dangerous motorists, with poor drivers being seen as getting away with foul behaviour, particularly from undertaking, sitting in overtaking lanes or driving dangerously close to the rear of other vehicles.

AA president, Edmund King, feels that new laws would help deter poor driving practices and improve the safety of our roads:

“An increase in the standard motoring fixed penalty fine will help deter those who commit motoring offences including mobile phone use.

“We are also pleased to see that at long last new powers and fines will be given to the police to tackle the top three pet hates of drivers - tailgaters, mobile phone abusers and middle-lane hogs.”

Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said:

“Anti-social behaviour is as big a problem on the roads as it is in wider society. Giving police more discretion to act, and freeing up resources to allow them to do so by cutting procedural delays in court, is good news.

“We are also pleased to see that the stick is accompanied by the chance of re-education for moderate offenders.

“Raising the fine level to £100 is justifiable to tackle the plague of handheld mobile phone use which slows drivers’ reaction times even more than being at the drink-drive limit or taking cannabis.”

With the government acting to clean up our environment, with subsidies encouraging consumers to trade-in their gas guzzlers for more environmentally friendly alternatives, it seems fitting that they are now moving to clean up our motorways of poor drivers, too.  

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