Drivers face £1,000 fine for not turning headlights on in bad weather
21st November 2022

Drivers face £1,000 fine for not turning their headlights on in bad weather under new highway code rule

  • Drivers could find themselves being fined for making a mistake in bad weather
  • All cars in the UK have automatic ‘daytime running lights’ (DRLs) for visibility
  • However, motorists must switch on brighter lights at night or in poor conditions
  • Failure to do so can see drivers slapped with a fine of up to £1,000 from police  

A rule over car lights could see motorists slapped with a £1,000 fine for making a mistake or driving in bad weather.

All British cars must have ‘daytime running lights’ (DRLs) that switch on when the engine starts and help with visibility during the day.

However, at night drivers and in bad weather, drivers must switch on their dipped headlights, which also turn on brighter rear lights, to avoid accidents.

If motorists rely on their low-level lights in poor visibility instead of using dipped headlights, they could be hit with fines of up to £1,000 by police.

Motorists could find themselves being fined up to £1,000 if they don’t get their lights right in bad weather

Drivers are legally required to switch on their bright lights at night and in poor visibility due to bad weather 

Graham Conway, managing director at Select Car Leasing told Somerset Live: ‘DRLs have been helping to improve road safety for more than a decade now. But I’d urge motorists to understand precisely how they work and what job they’re supposed to do. 

‘Here at Select, we’ve heard countless reports of people failing to illuminate their headlights and taillights while driving in poor visibility in recent weeks, and there’s a fear motorists might mistakenly believe that their DRLs are sufficient in those sorts of conditions. They’re not!

Failure to illuminate properly can lead to a £1,000 fine if spotted by the police. Taking proactive control of the different lights you use will increase your safety and reduce any risk on winter journeys.’ 

Mr Conway added that storms and heavy rain across the UK last week had seen motorways full of cars only using their low-light DRLs.

He said doing so was ‘incredibly dangerous’ and could lead to serious car crashes, adding it was also ‘extremely foolish’ not to switch on brighter lights when driving at night.

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