UK mobile phone driving laws explained by the RAC

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With Christmas in full swing, it is not uncommon to pop on a bit of Wham! or Michael Bublé to get into the spirit of things. However, drivers are being warned that if their Christmas sing-a-long gets too lazy when behind the wheel, they could face drastic fines.

Why might Christmas music put you at risk of a fine?

Experts from Nationwide Vehicle Contracts explained that the reason fees are most likely to be dished out is if your volume is up too high.

They pointed out that, according to the Highway Code rule 148, if you were to play your music too loud it could be classed as a distraction.

In the event you are pulled over for such a “distraction”, in a severe scenario it could result in up to three points on your license and a £100 fine this Christmas.

Rule 148 of the Highway Code states: “Safe driving and riding needs concentration. Avoid distractions when driving or riding”.

This rule also applies to people on motorbikes and bicycles.

According to AskThePolice: “It is not an offence in itself to listen to music on a mobile device whilst driving, riding or cycling.

“However, listening to music can be distracting.

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“You need to be able to bring to bear all the senses you can and being able to hear is important in enabling you to be in proper control of your vehicle in traffic.

“A person using a device playing loud music, may, therefore, be deemed not to have proper control of their vehicle or to be driving without reasonable consideration for others, both of which are relatively serious offences.”

In more severe cases, if your music was loud enough to obstruct you from hearing potential hazards, this could put others at risk and you could be liable for “driving without due care and attention” or “dangerous driving” charges.

These are serious charges that can lead to driving bans and up to £5,000 in fines from your Local Authority.

Of course, the rule does not only apply to Christmas music but loud music year-round.

Is music the only distraction that can land drivers with a fine?

Music is not the only thing classed as a distraction according to the Highway Code.

Arguing with fellow passengers, trying to read maps while driving, as well as eating and drinking, are also classed as distractions.

However, it is not common for fines to be dished out for eating and drinking unless the police deem you to be driving “carelessly”.

Careless driving can make motorists liable for an on-the-spot fine of £100.

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