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A good number of the laws pertaining to driving have been around for many years. The spring of 2017 is likely to see a range of changes to the laws governing driving and how these will affect drivers as a whole. If you’ve not yet taken your driving test then you need to understand that the law governing drivers are changing. The authorities are cracking down on people using their mobile phone while they are driving, and road tax is set to rise – so how will this affect you?
The Driving Test
Under the new rulings, the driving test will see considerable changes. Rather than having to memorise and learn about routes and the local area, learner drivers will be tested more on their use of satellite navigation.
At present, the independent driving part of the test takes ten minutes, but under the new ruling, you will need to demonstrate your independent driving for twenty minutes, which is probably a good thing! These changes will come in later in 2017.
Using Mobile Phones
Research has shown that there is a direct link between some road accidents and drivers using their mobile phones while they are on the move. There are already penalties in place for this type of dangerous driving, but these are set to increase this year. If you decide to risk breaking this particular law, then if you are caught, you could have six penalty points added to your licence, as well as a £200 fine.
Penalties increase for drivers caught flouting this law a second time; you could be taken to caught, have twelve points added to your licence and be faced with a fine of £1,000. The message is that if you decide to use your mobile phone while you are driving, and get caught several times, you could lose your licence altogether.
Car Seats for Children
The law on booster seats for kids should already have changed by the time you read this. Children up to the age of 12 and whose height is 135cms or less, will legally need a car seat. Car seats will need to be labelled showing the weight and height that is suitable.
Speeding and Causing Death by Driving Dangerously
As from April this year, if you are caught exceeding the speed limit (which can be up to 70 mph on motorways, and stated speed limits on town and country roads) you could face a fine of up to one and a half times of your weekly income as well as points on your licence.
If you are involved in a road accident that results in the death of another road user, you could be facing a life sentence rather than the current fourteen years maximum. If you are found to be at fault when another road user is seriously injured, then you could face going to prison for three years. The period for these last issues is not yet set, but should come into force sometime this year if campaigners have their way.