Weird and Wonderful Highway Code Rules

Posted on 30 March 2022 by CarTakeBack

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Following the important, and as it turned out, relatively controversial, updates to the UK's Highway Code at the end of January, we decided to take a look at the whole code and route you out the weirdest and most interesting pieces of information in there!

Did you know these little driving gems?!…

Rule 16

Moving vehicles. You MUST NOT get onto or hold onto a moving vehicle.

Holding onto a moving vehicle

Not sure any of us need this one spelling out (although let's admit it - we're all thinking about the glorious scene in Back to the Future when Marty hitches a ride on his hoverboard!)

Rule 25

Toucan crossings are light-controlled crossings which allow cyclists and pedestrians to share crossing space and cross at the same time. They are push-button operated. Pedestrians and cyclists will see the green signal together. Cyclists are permitted to ride across.

Toucan crossing

You might already know about Pelican and Puffin crossings, but did you honestly know there were Toucans too?! 

Rule 58

Animals being herded. These should be kept under control at all times. You should, if possible, send another person along the road in front to warn other road users, especially at a bend or the brow of a hill. It is safer not to move animals after dark, but if you do, then wear reflective clothing and ensure that lights are carried (white at the front and red at the rear of the herd).

Herding animals on a highway

Did you know herding animals was in the Highway Code? And according to the rules, at night there should be a red light at the rear… We wonder if they make sheep tail lights. 

Rule 98

Before towing. As a driver you MUST NOT tow more than your licence permits. If you passed your car driving test on or after 1 January 1997, you are restricted on the weight of trailer you can tow.

Your license determines what you can tow

When you passed your test determines the weight you are allowed to tow!

Rule 102

Children in cars, vans and other goods vehicles. Drivers who are carrying children in cars, vans and other goods vehicles should also ensure that…

• children should get into the vehicle through the door nearest the kerb
• child restraints are properly fitted to manufacturer's instructions
• children do not sit behind the rear seats in an estate car or hatchback, unless a special child seat has been fitted
• the child safety door locks, where fitted, are used when children are in the vehicle
• children are kept under control

Children in the car

 The last point in this rule certainly made those of us with children chuckle. We're wondering what would be classed as out of control?!

Rule 110

Flashing headlights. Only flash your headlights to let other road users know that you are there. Do not flash your headlights to convey any other message or intimidate other road users.

Flashing your headlights

Did you know that it is actually specified in the Highway code that there is only one use for flashing your headlights? So, no more morse code light messages!

Rule 112

The horn. Use only while your vehicle is moving and you need to warn other road users of your presence. Never sound your horn aggressively. You MUST NOT use your horn
    • while stationary on the road
    • when driving in a built-up area between the hours of 11.30 pm and 7.00 am
except when another road user poses a danger.

Using your car horn

The next time that waiting taxi wakes up your baby or disturbs your lie-in, you may wish to calmly remind them that it is against the highway code!

Rule 116

Hazard warning lights. These may be used when your vehicle is stationary, to warn that it is temporarily obstructing traffic. Never use them as an excuse for dangerous or illegal parking. You MUST NOT use hazard warning lights while driving or being towed unless you are on a motorway or unrestricted dual carriageway and you need to warn drivers behind you of a hazard or obstruction ahead. Only use them for long enough to ensure that your warning has been observed.

Hazard lights

That's another rule that after a quick survey in the office we realised no one actually knew…

Rule 147

Be considerate. Be careful of and considerate towards all types of road users, especially those requiring extra care.
Including: do not allow yourself to become agitated or involved if someone is behaving badly on the road. This will only make the situation worse. Pull over, calm down and, when you feel relaxed, continue your journey.

 Agitated driver

Read the 'including' point again and try not to raise your eyebrows! "do not allow yourself to become agitated if someone is behaving badly on the road" …We know it's right, but we feel agitated just reading this one!

Rule 148

Safe driving and riding needs concentration. Avoid distractions when driving or riding such as
    • loud music (this may mask other sounds)
    • trying to read maps
    • starting or adjusting any music or radio
    • arguing with your passengers or other road users…

Safe driving without distraction

This is another rule that may be right, but we're not sure there's many couples or families that have managed a long journey without doing at least one of these things!

While every rule is undoubtedly important, we had great fun reading through and finding these funny, unusual or hard-to-avoid regulations, we hope you enjoyed them too!

This year's Highway Code updates will affect how you should drive - do read up on the latest rules and regulations on the government website.