Millions of road users could be hit with £5,000 charge for driving in the rain today
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Motorists could be hit with charges for careless driving if their windscreen wipers develop faults during wet conditions. Road users are likely to first be issued with a £100 fixed penalty notice for driving a vehicle which has a defective part.
However, as wiper blades help clear rainwater off your windscreen this could be viewed as a dangerous hazard and further penalties can be issued.
Driving without a clear view of the road ahead could be considered careless driving which carries a £5,000 fine if the case is taken to court.
Drivers could also be hit with up to nine penalty points and be issued a temporary driving ban in some extreme cases.
Research form Halfords has revealed that millions of road users could be unexpectedly caught out by the charge.
They have revealed that 6.5million cars are being driven with faulty wiper blades across the UK in a major safety risk.
A recent poll by the firm has found that 17 percent of road users claim to have driven with faulty or broker blades at some point.
Rebecca Davis, spokesperson for Halfords said it was likely that “many motorists” were “struggling to see” the road due to the faulty car part.
She said: “Strong wind and torrential rain could cause trouble for those with dodgy wiper blades.
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“Our research shows that there are likely to be many motorists out there struggling to see as their wiper blades fail to cope with the elements.
“Poor visibility doesn’t just make driving in the rain unpleasant and more tiring but failing to see a hazard quickly slows your reaction time.
“This can add several car lengths to your stopping distance and make the difference between avoiding a collision and not.”
Analysis by the firm has revealed that a lack of knowledge of basic car maintenance is also to blame with many road users unaware of warning signs or how to get them fixed.
The research found that one-fifth of road users revealed they were nor aware of whether their wiper blade needed changing at all.
A total of 16 percent said they would wait for a garage to tell them that a wiper blade needed replacing before doing so.
However, this could see many drivers risking penalties as garages are unlikely to notice an issue until their next MOT or car service.
A total of 15 percent said they would wait until the wiper blade began to screech before changing it despite the safety risks.
Halfords will check wiper blades as part of a free five-point winter check but they can also be assessed at many local garages.
Ms Davis says motorists can identify whether their wiper blades need replacing with a few tell-tale warning signs.
Motorists should take action as soon as they can to avoid facing the consequences of running dangerous parts on their vehicle.
“As soon as a wiper begins to smear rather than clear your windscreen it is past its best and should be changed.
“Modern flat wiper blades don’t screech on the windscreen, so drivers listening for this audible warning are likely to miss the signs that their blades aren’t cutting it anymore.”
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