Over 50% of drivers admit to copying offenses on the road

Traffic lights turning red and yellow with Great Britain flag in the background

In a recent survey, over 50% of drivers admitted they would commit a driving offence if they saw another driver do the same! Doing this could put them at risk of a fine of up to £2,500. 

Car and van leasing company Vanarama surveyed 1,000 drivers and asked, “Which of the following driving actions are you more likely to carry out if you see others doing it first? Speeding, parking on double yellow lines, running a red light, undertaking, hogging the middle lane of a motorway, or using the wrong lane to shortcut traffic.” 

Speeding was the offence drivers tend to copy the most

Drivers were asked which of these fines they would commit if they saw another driver do it first. Offences included speeding, parking on double yellow lines, running a red light, undertaking, hogging the middle lane of a motorway, or using the wrong lane to shortcut traffic. Drivers were able to pick as many answers they would commit or have committed before.

Out of all the offences listed, it was speeding that was voted the most likely thing drivers would copy each other doing, with almost one in six drivers (14%) admitting to it. The second and third offences drivers are most likely to copy are sitting in the middle lane of a motorway and using the wrong lane to shortcut traffic, with almost one in ten drivers (9%) admitting they were likely to commit these offences.

According to the Highway Code, Speeding could land you with a £1,000 fine, with it increasing to £2,500 for some motorway offences. Drivers could also receive 3-6 points on their licence and a disqualification. The minimum fine is £100. So while others may be doing it, to avoid this illegal offence, it’s best not to follow the crowd or risk the fine and points. 

Belfast is the worst city for drivers breaking the law if another driver does it first

In Belfast, two-thirds (66%) of people surveyed admitted they would break the law while driving if someone else did it before them. The highest offence, with over one in six (17%) drivers likely to commit the offence, was using the wrong lane as a shortcut past traffic, e.g., at a multi-lane roundabout. 

Norwich drivers are the most prolific when it comes to speeding; almost one in four (23%) of drivers in Norwich admitted they would break the speed limit if another driver did so before them, with them most in danger of receiving an £1,000 fine. 

Liverpool drivers were the most likely to park on double yellow lines, while London motorists were most likely to run a red light. 

Drivers in Plymouth were the safest drivers, with less than one in six drivers (14%) admitting they would follow other drivers in breaking the law when it comes to driving, meaning if you live there or are heading there this summer, hopefully it will be a safer driving experience. 

Drivers could face nearly £4k in fines by following other drivers offences

If drivers copied each other on all the driving offences listed in the survey, they would have a staggering £3,380 to pay. Drivers are urged to follow the highway code to avoid causing accidents and risking receiving a fine and points on their licence. This is essential to learn while learning to drive to make sure you aren’t breaking the law.

1. Keep to the speed limit to avoid a maximum £2,500 fine

Speeding is one of the most common offences, and the survey backs that up. To avoid a maximum £2,500 fine for speeding, make sure you stick to the speed limit. This is to avoid accidents, but it will also help save on petrol and the maintenance of your car. Sitting in the middle line of a motorway.

2. Using the wrong lane as a shortcut past traffic could be classed as dangerous driving

If you are in the wrong lane going around a roundabout, this could be classed as careless driving and could be cause for an offence. Especially if you undertake a car, this could cause an accident. This can be an unlimited fine, and you could get 3-9 points on your licence. Normal fines can start from £100. If the lane goes into a bus lane, there could be a charge of around £70 for going into a lane like this, so think twice before trying to switch lanes to get away quicker, as it may end up costing you more in the long run. 

3. Sitting in the middle lane of a motorway IS an offence!

If you are caught sitting in the middle lane of the motorway it is classed as an offence! The Highway Code states ‘If you are overtaking, you should return to the left lane when it is safe to do so.’ This could be classed as careless driving, with an unlimited fine proposed for this offence, it is likely you may receive an £100 fine as standard.

4. Parking on double yellow lines can be an offence by local councils

Waiting and parking on double yellow lines is an offence as stated in the Highway Code. There can only be some exceptions, including for blue badge holders, and if a timeframe is set for you to park. Local councils could have different amounts due their enforcement officers, but you could typically expect to receive a fine of £50-£80, which would reduce if you paid it quicker.

5. Undertaking could still cost you £100 despite not being an official Highway Code offence

Undertaking may not be an illegal manoeuvre per say but the Highway Code states drivers should only overtake on the right (Rule 267), it can also fit into careless driving on a motorway, if a driver does it in a way that could cause an accident. This can also mean three points on your driving licence and at least an £100 fine.

6. Driving through a red light can cost you up to £1,000

While some traffic lights have cameras fixed upon them, not all of them do. However this doesn’t mean you won’t get caught driving through a red light. You can receive a minimum of £100 fine for this offence, but it can go to a maximum of £1,000 based on the circumstances. So always check the traffic lights are on green before pulling away.

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