Every month we receive a dozen or so phone calls from panic-stricken motorists desperate to book a last minute MOT.
It either runs out in a few days or - gulp - has already expired.
Which means that technically, laws of the land are being broken.
I was thinking about this the other day whilst idly flicking through my coffee table copy of the Highway Code… surely everybody has one of these?!
It was surprising to think about the many other driving laws we break with alarming regularity.
Some are actual law, that could land you with a fine or penalty points for violating, and others are recommendations that, although not bound by law, would be taken as evidence in any kind of dangerous driving charges.
Here are 3 ‘recommendations’ from the Code that I suspect we’re not all innocent of…
1) Middle lane hogging
We all get frustrated when somebody refuses to budge from the middle lane, but most people don’t realise that by doing so they’re breaking the law.
The law changed in 2013 to allow officers to dish out on the spot fines and penalty points for not returning to the left hand lane as soon as it’s safe to do so.
2) Driving over painted roundabouts
How many times have you darted across the roundabout at the top of East Street outside the Cross Keys? Or turning right onto Bell Lane from Lower High Street?
It seems almost ridiculous to labour around the full circle, especially when the rest of the road is empty.
But… it’s against the law!
3) Always let busses out
This one isn’t actually law, but it’s a strong recommendation in the Code. Part courtesy, part safety, allowing larger vehicles out in front of you is good - if not common - practice.
4) Avoid in-car distractions
We all know we can’t use our mobile phones at the wheel, but ‘in-car distractions’ runs to a whole lot more than texting at the wheel.
Listening to loud music, eating and drinking, and even arguing with other passengers constitutes distractions, and contravenes the Highway Code.
5) Flashing headlights
Some of the narrow streets around town necessitate a bit of give and take.
Driving down Wellington Street for example, and typically you’ll find cars flashing you to beckon you on whilst they duck in between 2 parked cars.
Helpful though this may be, it goes against the Code which states we should never flash our lights to convey any kind of message.
It’s not law, but it can still cause problems if you happen to misinterpret a signal.
Makes you want to have another proper flick through of your copy of the Highway Code doesn’t it!
No? Just me? Well, you can rely on me to share the best bits with you ;)
At Thame Cars we do try our hardest to keep our customers on the right side of the law.
We send out MOT reminders in plenty of time, and make it really simple to book in over the phone or online.
If your annual test is coming up, hop over to our Service & MOT online booking page and schedule it at a convenient time.