Highway Code updated – new penalties for being too tired to drive

Every UK driver could face ‘unlimited fines’ under new sleeping law. (Manchester Evening News)

This should be of interest to all Bectu members working in production, as well as being useful evidence in support of the campaign we are running in partnership with our union kin, IATSE at the moment.

Clauses 90 – 94 of the Highway Code have been updated to say…

Driving when you are tired greatly increases your risk of collision. To minimise this risk

  • make sure you are fit to drive. Do not begin a journey if you are tired. Get sufficient sleep before embarking on a long journey
  • avoid undertaking long journeys between midnight and 6 am, when natural alertness is at a minimum
  • plan your journey to take sufficient breaks. A minimum break of at least 15 minutes after every two hours of driving is recommended
  • if you feel sleepy, stop in a safe place. Do not stop in an emergency area or on a hard shoulder of a motorway (see Rule 262 for guidance on places to take a break when travelling on motorways).

As the RAC explains:

Any accident that occurs as a result of falling asleep at the wheel is usually classified as ‘dangerous driving’.

Dangerous driving is described as driving which “falls far below the standard expected of a competent and careful driver and it would be obvious that driving in that way would be dangerous.”

It can include driving aggressively, overtaking in dangerous locations and racing other vehicles. It also covers “driving when unfit, including having an injury, being unable to see clearly, not taking prescribed drugs, or being sleepy.” (Link to CPS website)

Dangerous driving offences will be dealt with by the Magistrates’ Court or Crown Court, depending on the seriousness.

If found guilty, you could be hit with an unlimited fine, a driving ban and up to 14 years in prison.”

This is a long-running campaign from the RAC.

This entry was posted in Bectu Agreements, Long hours, Major Motion Picture Agreement, Safe working practices, Trades Unions, TV Drama Agreement, Wellbeing, Work-life balance and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *