Tag Archive: road traffic

  1. Changes to Motoring Law We Should Expect in 2020

    Leave a Comment

    In 2020, we can expect to see some changes to the law regarding road traffic and motoring. We’ve outlined some of them below, allowing you to stay informed and alter any driving habits to avoid incurring fines or penalties whilst you’re on the road.


    Smart motorways

    The new smart motorway network is expected to cover 488 miles by April, bringing with it some changes that motorists need to be aware of in order to use these motorways safely.

    With speed cameras in operation on each lane of the smart motorway, there are already fines issued to motorists who exceed the speed limit. However, this year may see the enforcement of stronger penalties, and motorists could expect to receive a fine for driving in a closed lane also.


    Intelligent speed assist

    New this year, car models in the UK are to be fitted with intelligent speed assist (ISA) systems. Developed for the safety of drivers and passengers on the road, the technology features smart cameras which observe and interpret road signs in order to adjust the vehicle’s operation, including limiting the speed that the vehicle is able to reach.

    ISA systems are set to become mandatory features in new cars from 2022, with some car manufacturers proposing to introduce them to their production line sooner. Others, such as Volvo, have announced that, from this year, all new cars will have a top speed capability restricted to 112mph.


    Restricted access zones

    In the interests of reducing the country’s carbon emission figures, a new Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) was introduced to Central London in April of last year. This saw restrictions being placed on certain high-emission vehicles, and the plan is for the zone to be extended to encompass all of inner London next year. The ULEZ replaces the T-charge scheme and involves drivers of high-emission vehicles having to pay a charge in order to drive within the zone.

    Similar Ultra Low Emission Zones are said to be under consideration for introduction this year to a number of cities around the UK, including Leeds, Newcastle, Cardiff and Edinburgh, with a confirmed ULEZ being launched in Birmingham this July.


    EU driving permits

    With Britain set to leave the EU, government guidelines have warned drivers that they may need an international driving permit in order to drive legally whilst abroad in EU countries following Brexit.


    Pavement parking bans

    A ban on pavement parking has been in place in London for over 40 years. However, over the course of this year and next, motorists are to expect the ban to be rolled out further across the UK, potentially with stricter penalties in place.


    DRN Solicitors – Experts in Road Traffic Law

    The Road Traffic Department at DRN Solicitors accept instructions from across the United Kingdom. Keith Rennison explains: “Perhaps unsurprisingly, clients want to instruct a firm they know and trust, rather than an unknown quantity. Our fee earners have advanced special reasons and exceptional hardship arguments nationwide. In an area that is not often covered by Legal Aid, people want to pay for an expert service. Our solicitors have decades of experience between them and can provide honest and efficient advice.”

    If you are at risk of disqualification for repeated offences, speak to a qualified lawyer today. S35(1) of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 sets out the minimum periods of disqualification for repeated offences. If the penalty points to be taken into account number 12 or more a minimum disqualification will follow unless the court is satisfied, having regard to all the circumstances, that there are grounds for mitigating the normal consequences of the conviction. The court can order an offender be disqualified for a shorter period or not at all.

    “If there are mitigating circumstances, the court does not necessarily have to disqualify for the minimum period. This can mean that there is no disqualification, or one that is shorter than the minimum.”


    Need assistance? Call us today on 01282 433241 for further advice.

  2. Emergency Breaking For Drowsy Drivers, Just One of The New Safety Features.

    Leave a Comment

    Within 3 years, cars sold in Europe will have automatic emergency braking and technology that spots when drivers are drowsy or speeding.  

    It will be one of 15 new safety features fitted as standard to cars, HGVs or buses. Other measures include technology that detects when drivers are losing concentration or falling asleep. 

    David Lawson head of DRN’s Road Traffic team said: “the UK Government has already said that vehicle standards will be aligned with those in Europe, meaning the same will apply on British roads, irrespective of Brexit.” 

    The potential impact is significant and it could drastically reduce the number of offenders coming before the courts in relation to speeding, careless driving and dangerous driving amongst others.

    There are significant numbers of people at the moment who are facing the loss of their licence through offences that may in the future be avoidable.

    At present, anyone who accumulates 12 or more points must be disqualified unless they can show it would cause exceptional hardship.

    Anyone facing the loss of their licence should contact our expert road traffic team on 01282 433241, where we will do our utmost to help you keep your license.

  3. Do You Use Your Phone In Traffic? Don’t do it.

    Leave a Comment

    David Leach is a member of our Criminal Department. He specialises in Criminal Matters, Claims Against the Police and Road Traffic Offences.


    Recently, David has advised a client convicted whilst unrepresented of using a mobile telephone whilst driving. David explains “It is illegal to hold a phone or sat nav while driving. You must have hands-free access and the device must not block your view of the road and traffic ahead. It is imperative that you must stay in full control of your vehicle at all times.”


    “My client was queuing in traffic. This is sufficient for the offence to be committed. As is supervising a learner driver or waiting at traffic lights. You can only use a hand-held phone if either you are safely parked or you need to call 999 in an emergency and it’s unsafe or impractical to stop.”


    “The penalties can have a real effect on clients. You can get 6 penalty points and a £200 fine if you use a hand-held phone when driving. You’ll also lose your licence if you passed your driving test in the last 2 year. You can also be taken to court where you can be banned from driving and fined.


    If you require any assistance, you can contact Mr Leach on 01282 433 241
    at our Burnley Office.

  4. Be Careful Out There – Dark Evenings and Cyclists are a Lawsuit Waiting to Happen

    Leave a Comment

    In the UK, Autumn 2018 saw a 15% increase in road traffic accidents compared to spring and summer, according to a report by a group of well-known accident claim solicitors. How did they know this? Well, we’d say that’s because more road users than ever before are taking to litigation and accident claims to resolve their issues, especially pedestrians and cyclists.

    It can be dangerous out there for road users when the nights are longer and the conditions are more treacherous. Dark evenings mean it’s easier for dog walkers and joggers to be caught out without reflective gear on, and cyclists can be easily missed if their lights are dim or a driver is being blinded by an oncoming car’s full beam headlights.

    There are ways to prevent accidents though. Read on to find out more.

    Tips to stay road-safe this winter

    For drivers

    As a driver, you’ll know that checking your mirrors and being aware of cyclists and other road users is vital, but in the darker mornings and evenings it’s even more important. Make sure your own lights are all fully functional including your fog lights, and that you’re giving plenty of room to other road users. Carry sunglasses in your car too – accidents often happen when the sun is shining  over the road making it hard to see other road users.

    For cyclists

    As a cyclist, make sure that your lights are fully charged or the batteries aren’t running low so that they remain bright and visible. Wear bright, reflective clothing and remember to take the correct position in the road when turning or using a roundabout so that cars, vans and other road users can make room for you.

    For walkers and joggers

    If you’re walking or jogging and using the roads during the darker hours of the morning and evening, be aware that your visibility is extremely reduced to drivers. Their cars may have steamed-up windows, they may have headlights reflecting on their windscreen and they might even just miss you.

    Make yourself more visible with bright clothing and reflective strips on your arms, ankles and shoes. If you’re walking your dog, consider a light-up or glow in the dark collar to keep them safe and visible too. Also remember that in frosty and icy conditions, vehicles need more time to slow down and stop, so bear this in mind when crossing roads in cold weather.

    What to do if you’re in an accident

    If you’re in a road traffic accident as a driver or other road user, you may be eligible for compensation. If you have been injured and someone else is to blame, at DRN we have a team of expert personal injury lawyers who can advise you as to whether you have a claim. We will work closely with you to ensure you get the compensation you deserve.

    This service is absolutely no win, no fee, so that you have complete peace of mind.

    If you’d like to talk to our expert team about our accident and personal injury claim services, call our Burnley office today on 01282 433241 or our Colne office directly on 01282 864500.

  5. David Leach Secures No Ban For Drink Driving Offence In Case of R v JH

    Leave a Comment

    Client Keeps his driving licence following the crown offering no evidence in relation to offences of; Driving with Excess Alcohol, No Licence and No Insurance. These offences were substituted with a single offence of being in charge of a motor vehicle where the level of alcohol exceeded the prescribed limit.

    The case involved a witness seeing a male and female driving a motor vehicle, both whom appeared to be under the influence of drink. The police were called and after the witness followed the two suspect for some distance the police arrived at the scene where the vehicle had parked up. The police arrested the male and took the female home.

    The witness who initially reported the incident and followed the vehicle lost sight of the vehicle for some time. When she located the vehicle sometime later the male was no longer in the driving seat. Two police officers arrived at the scene and their evidence was somewhat contradictory to each other, together with the break in the sighting of the vehicle, the crown could not be sure that the defendant, who denied driving or having any connection with the vehicle, was the same male who was seen close to the vehicle where it was parked.

    Although the defendant received a financial penalty and 10 points on his licence, he managed to keep his driving licence, had he been convicted of the driving with excess alcohol offence he would have been disqualified from driving for a period of 14 – 18 months.

    DRN Solicitors is committed to working within the law to help you contest any charges of motoring and driving offences and keep your licence so you can stay on the road.