New Highway Code rule means drivers can be fined £200 for listening to music


All drivers in the UK have been warned about listening to music in their car.

People with streaming music apps like Spotify and Apple Music are more likely to be affected, but the rules apply to anyone with a mobile phone.

People have been warned that if they are caught changing a song, they risk an immediate £200 fine.

The warning comes ahead of impending changes to the Highway Code, which are set to shake up the hierarchy of people on the road, making it safer for the most vulnerable users.

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Andrew Marshall of financial firm CarMoney says: “More and more drivers are being caught on the roads by unexpected fines. The new changes to the Highway Code will impose more responsibility on road users and it will be a criminal offense to disobey them.

“More publicized offences, like making phone calls while driving, are already considered unacceptable in our society, but simple things like throwing a cigarette out the window are what we see on the road every day and often without consequence.

“We remind road users to be considerate of other road users and obey traffic laws for their own safety and the safety of others while traveling.”

With an entirely new set of codes about to go into action, read on for the rules that already exist, according to CarMoney.

Here is a list of some of the lesser-known rules that will go into effect:

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Stopping beyond the white line at traffic lights

Crossing this line can cost you up to £100 and can even add three points to your license.

Advanced Stop Lines, or ASL, mark areas reserved for bicyclists.

Motorists who creep over the line and into the box risk a ticket and points.

Use the phone to change the playlist while driving

New laws aimed at eliminating dangerous driving now state that people who change the song on their phone while driving can be fined.

This also includes doing things like taking photos or videos. Doing anything of the sort can get you slapped with a £200 fine.

While driving by phone was banned in 2003, this new change brings other phone use laws up to date, making motorists who use their phone in a variety of ways liable for dangerous driving.

Throwing cigarettes out of a car window

‘Improperly disposing of a cigarette’ can land motorists a fixed penalty notice fine of between £50 and £100 because throwing butts out of the window is no different from littering.

Although smoking in a car is not a crime as long as the passengers are over the age of 18, this fine was introduced to limit littering and prevent the casual disposal of plastic butts to align with current littering laws.

Have a dirty license plate

In winter, it can be very easy for dirt and grime to build up on your vehicle’s license plate when driving on wet roads. But failing to keep your plate clear and visible can result in a whopping £1,000 fine.

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If your license plate is illegible, you are going against the Highway Code, which says: “Lights, indicators and license plates must be kept clean and uncluttered.”

So be sure to thoroughly clean your vehicle after driving on dirty roads.


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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