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Do you know the rules of the road?

Driving a car

New research has revealed that millions of UK drivers are clueless about the basics of motoring.

Around one in seven were unaware that it is an offence to use a handheld phone while supervising a learner driver.

More than half also have no idea that cursing a fellow motorist could result in a fine of 75% of your weekly income, while 48% don’t know it’s illegal to pay at a drive-thru with a smartphone if your engine is on and your handbrake off.

The sequence of traffic lights puzzles many. Researchers found that more than one in 10 believe a single amber light is followed by a green signal, while 13% mistakenly think it goes to a red and amber together. Less than three quarters correctly said it leads to a red light.

The stats emerged in a quiz created by Jardine Motors Group as part of its ongoing campaign to help raise awareness of road safety, with only TWO PER CENT of the 1,558 drivers who took part getting all 12 questions correct.

“Everyone works hard to swot up before their driving test, but how many of us actively keep up to date with the rules of the road?” said spokesman Matt Wrigley.

“Our Driving Genius quiz highlighted a number of areas where misunderstanding exists, particularly around new rules which have been introduced since that magical moment that we passed our test.

“For example, over a quarter of respondents could not identify the correct penalty for using a handheld mobile phone.”

It also emerged just half of drivers know you are allowed to use your mobile phone while driving to call 999, while one in five didn’t realise it’s illegal to flash your headlights at others to warn them of a speed camera.

And in the event of a breakdown on the motorway with an animal in the vehicle, just 45% thought leaving them in the car was the best course of action.

Instead, 48% would get the animal out and keep them by their side, while more than one in twenty would stay in the vehicle with them.

Worryingly, one in 100 drivers even admitted that rather than pulling into a service station to have a rest when you are feeling tired, they think you should simply put your foot down to your destination in less time.

About Gareth Herincx

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who's worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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