Sitting in your car with the engine running could get you in trouble with the law


Auto experts have warned that idling your car’s engine is illegal under traffic laws and could put you in hot water.

It comes after delegates to last month’s COP26 climate summit in Glasgow came under fire after fleets of luxury chauffeured vehicles were spotted parked in nearby streets with their engines running.

Campaigners claimed this sends the wrong message as world leaders craft plans to reduce the impact of fossil fuels on the health of the planet.

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Duncan McClure Fisher, of the leading automobile association MotorEasy, said: “Rule 123 of the Highway Traffic Act states,” You must not leave a vehicle’s engine running unnecessarily when the vehicle is stationary in a lane. public “.

“This is enforced under section 42 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, with local authorities being able to impose a fine of up to £ 80.

“And besides being against the law, it’s obviously not great for the environment to have an increase in emissions escaping into the atmosphere.”

A study last year found that 60% of UK motorists were unaware that it was illegal to sit in a stationary vehicle while the engine was running.

The research, conducted by auto giants Renault, also found that male drivers were 50% more likely to leave the engine running on the school circuit than women.

The idling rules apply even if you try to defrost your windshield in cold weather.

This is a situation that often occurs when waiting at a red light or in heavy traffic. However, many modern cars are equipped with stop and start systems that shut off the engine when stationary.

The idling rule is one of a series of lesser-known regulations set out in the traffic laws that have the potential to intercept people.

Others include sleeping in a drunken car, honking your horn while stationary, and paying in drive-thru with a cell phone.

The Highway Code was first published in 1931, establishing guidelines and rules for road users, including drivers, motorcyclists, horse riders, cyclists and pedestrians.

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