As we bid farewell to the mini heatwave, UK drivers are being alerted to potential fines of up to £5,000 for improper use of air conditioning.
The warning comes as much of the UK basked in temperatures of up to 30℃ following the damp and gloomy summer, tempting many motorists to rely on car air-con to beat the heat while driving.
Under Highway Code rule 237, drivers are mandated to maintain “well-ventilated” conditions within their cars. This regulation is in place primarily to combat drowsiness that could impair a driver’s control over their vehicle. Motorists are being warned that disregarding this guide may lead to severe consequences.
In cases where drivers flout this rule and subsequently lose control of their motor, they face the possibility of receiving substantial fines, with the most severe penalties reaching £5,000. The stringent enforcement of this rule underscores the importance of staying vigilant while behind the wheel, especially during hot weather conditions.
The government states that ‘many of the rules in the Code are legal requirements, and if you disobey these rules you are committing a criminal offence.’ The RAC confirms that the Highway Code alone is not the law, but that many of its instructions are supported by law.
The DVLA states: ‘You may be fined, given penalty points on your licence or be disqualified from driving. In the most serious cases, you may be sent to prison.’ Authorities are urging all drivers to adhere to these guidelines, not only to avoid financial penalties but to enhance road safety during future heatwaves.
Motorists are reminded to use air-con judiciously and responsibly. Taking regular breaks during long journeys, staying hydrated and keeping vehicles well-ventilated are essential measures to ensure road safety and avoid fines.