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Move over! Fixed Penalties for middle lane hogs

Wed, 05 Jun 2013

Move over or get a fine! Middle lane hogs to get fixed penalties

It really is remarkable the number of drivers who think three-lane motorways are split in to three lanes – lorries, them and idiots in the outside lane – and spend their whole journey sat in lane two regardless.

That’s bad enough if you’re driving a car, but it’s much worse if you’re driving a heavy goods vehicle that can’t use lane three and ends up baulked and frustrated by the man with the pipe and elbow patches driving ‘steadily’ on his way.

To combat this, police are being given power to issue fixed penalties to middle lane hogs – and give them three penalty points too – in a move to try and curtail the inevitable frustrations that stem from the thoughtlessness of middle lane drivers.

It’s a sensible plan, and comes along with additional powers to issue on the spot fines to tailgaters and an increase in fixed penalties for no seat belt and using a mobile whilst driving rising to £100 too.

It’s also thought that the fixed penalty for driving without insurance will be raised from the current £200 and 6 penalty points to £300.

It all sort of makes sense, but there are a couple of issues that make it all a bit of trumpeting about nothing.

As far as the fixed penalty for driving without insurance is concerned, that should reflect the actual cost of insuring a car. With average car insurance premiums probably around £2k a year, that should be the minimum fixed penalty or, for a certain type of driver, where’s the incentive to buy insurance in the first place?

As far as the fixed penalties for middle lane hogs go, it’s all very sensible in theory, but how many Plod do you see, even on our motorways? It’s all very well giving the Police powers to issue fixed penalties, but if there are precious few police on the roads, nothing is going to change.

And if we’re tinkering with fixed penalty notices, please can we have them for HGVs that spend an hour passing other HGVs on dual carriageway roads? That causes more frustration than all the middle lane hogs and tailgaters combined.

By Cars UK