New driving law: Thousands of motorists could be fined for driving too close to other cars

New driving law: Thousands of motorists could be fined for driving too close to other cars

05/19/2021

Tailgating: UK police gives advice on motoring offence

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Almost 90 percent of drivers said they support plans to fine drivers for the minor offence to boost road safety. The new survey from Motorpoint was filled out by over 1,600 people with 87 percent agreeing more action needed to be taken.

Data from recent tailgating trials suggests any new rule could see thousands of road users caught out

The Government has recently been trialling new tailgating technology on parts of the M1 in Northamptonshire.

The tool can detect whether drivers are maintaining a two-second gap to the car in front at all times.

However during the trial last year some 26,000 people were caught out by the scheme.

But tailgating is now a major issue for drivers with this listed as the cause in almost 600 serious accidents last year.

According to the data, 28 of these accidents resulted in someone being killed.

Mark Carpenter, Chief Executive Officer at Motorpoint said they were delighted the Government was “taking action”.

He warned the trails would not “solve the problem overnight” but said the new plans were a “step in the right direction”.

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He said: “Tailgating has become commonplace on our roads in recent years and we are delighted to see the Government finally taking action to address something that can quite literally cost people their lives.

“The issue of tailgating extends far beyond just motorways, and this step won’t solve the problem overnight, but at least it is a move in the right direction.”

Late last year, Northamptonshire Police said almost 10,000 vehicles were caught tailgating in the first two weeks of the new cameras being tested.

It said those caught out by the cameras received letters advising them they were too close to other cars.

The force said tailgating now accounts for around one in eight casualties on England’s motorways and A-roads.

Highways England Head of Road Safety, Jeremy Phillips said tailgating can often be “unintentional” but still “very frightening and intimidating”.

He said: “These new cameras have, sadly, highlighted just how many people are driving too close on our roads.

“We understand that most tailgating is unintentional by drivers who are simply unaware they are dangerously invading someone else’s space.

“But not leaving enough space between you and the vehicle in front can be very frightening and intimidating – it could also prove fatal.

“We are trialling the new cameras to make drivers aware of their behaviour and encourage better driving.

“We are also using the Space Invader video game character as a quick reminder to drivers of the risks of tailgating. Our message is simple – Don’t be a Space Invader, Stay safe, stay back.”

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