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A Careless Driving Reminder for the New Year

Posted: Friday, 05 January 2018

Now that we've officially turned the page on 2018, we thought it might be helpful to remind our readers about some of the lesser-known offences that could get drivers in trouble. Said offences are all listed as 'careless driving' under the law. Being found guilty of any of them could lead to penalty points and fines.

As a company that promotes electronic licence checks among employers with drivers on the payroll, we understand just how important it is for those who drive for a living to avoid violating the law. Just one misdemeanour could put a driver's job in jeopardy as well as exposing his or her employer to liability.

With that in mind, here are some of the more common careless driving offences:

Hogging the Middle Lane

Believe it or not, maintaining a position in the middle lane on a motorway and thereby forcing faster traffic around you is considered an offence. Slower traffic should always keep to the far-left lane; the middle lane is reserved for overtaking. Part 264 of the Highway Code says so:

"You should always drive in the left-hand lane when the road ahead is clear. If you are overtaking a number of slower-moving vehicles, you should return to the left-hand lane as soon as you are safely past."


Tailgating is an offence for obvious reasons. Driving too closely to the driver in front of you is dangerous. Safety demands that you leave at least one or two car lengths between you and the car ahead, more distance if the weather is bad.

Driving Too Slowly

Although there is no minimum speed in the UK – except in areas that are clearly marked as such – driving too slowly is also an offence. If you are driving slowly enough to cause others around you to have to slow down significantly, you are creating a safety issue. The same is true for unnecessary braking.

There are many other offences that fall under the careless driving category not listed here. Know this: thousands of drivers every year receive fines and penalty points as a result of being found guilty of one of them. Protect yourself by being a better driver in 2018. If you are an employer with drivers on the payroll, protect your company by committing to regular electronic licence checks for the coming year.

Source: Highway Code UK