While changes to driving laws can be a pain for everyone, they can be downright devastating to anyone who makes their living from a courier job. For paid drivers, points on your licence and fines aren’t just a nuisance: they can be the end of a livelihood. |
In this article, we’ll help keep you on the right side of the law by listing some of the most significant changes to road law introduced in 2018. You should remember to keep checking back and talking to other drivers, though. Road laws change frequently, and ignorance is no defence.
With this in mind, then, be sure to remember these changes and share them with others working courier jobs. In addition to having their backs, you might find you pick up some important information on the grapevine – about how these laws are being enforced, for instance.
On the Motorway
Picture this: you’re sitting in a queue, almost stationary. You can see your exit up ahead, and there’s clear hard shoulder all the way to it. You’ve got a delivery to make, and the line doesn’t look to be shifting. What do you do?
If you said nip onto the hard shoulder to make the exit, you wouldn’t be alone. We’ve all done it, and although it’s unconventional, it’s never been a problem before.
Not anymore. As of 2018, new cameras are being installed up and down along Britain’s roadways. Equipped with Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR), these cameras aim to catch out any and all drivers using the hard shoulder for anything they shouldn’t be. To avoid a £100 fine and three points on your licence, you’re best off waiting in traffic or finding another route.
Here’s another scenario familiar to anyone who’s ever worked doing a delivery or courier job. You get called in to deliver something on a small, busy street. There’s traffic up ahead and behind you. The delivery point, meanwhile, is just a quick dash out of your car.
It’s entirely natural in these situations to pull up slightly onto the pavement and keep the road free for other drivers. Under proposed new laws, though, it could land you a bad fine. At present, this is only illegal in London, but there’s a lot of talk about extending it. To stay out of trouble, it’s best to park up properly. Other drivers will just have to work around you.
In the Car, Not on the Phone
Finally, new laws aim to crack down on mobile phone use among road users. While most will know not to check their phone at stoplights already, the new laws also extend to phones kept in mounts.
Previously, a mounted phone might have been a decent enough substitute for satnav. Now, though, you could face a fine of £1,000, or £200 and six points on your licence for using one. Your best bet to avoid falling foul of these new restrictions is to invest in a decent satnav. They’re very affordable these days, and are better for anyone working on a courier job anyway, as most are able to give updates on construction, traffic, weather and more.
And there you have it: a short list of some of the biggest changes to recent road laws. Make sure you don’t get caught out – as we said earlier, ignorance of the law is no excuse, even when the law is changed quietly and recently.
Norman Dulwich is a correspondent for Courier Exchange, the world's largest neutral trading hub for same day courier job capacity in the express freight exchange industry. Over 5,400 member companies are networked together through the Exchange to fill empty capacity, get new clients and form long-lasting business relationships.
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