Have your say on updating the Highway Code

Cars on a motorway

What new rules and advice would you like to see included in the Highway Code?

Highways England is giving all drivers a chance to express their views on proposed changes to the national motoring handbook, as part of a four-week consultation process.

The proposed changes

Among the suggested updates, Highways England has provided:

  • Additional guidance on safe use of emergency areas (including their availability and what they look like)
  • Guidance around what to do in emergencies (such as always having a charged mobile phone with emergency numbers, and high visibility clothing)
  • Updated advice on smart motorways (specifically the use of hard shoulders as extra lanes in high congestion periods)
  • More on how safety cameras are used (enforcing speed limits and lane closures)
  • Advice targeted at ‘red X’ lane closures (plus what to do if broken down in these areas)
  • Information around the use of variable speed limits (to manage traffic flow)
  • Updated guidance on driving when fatigued, unsafe towing, tailgating and driving unroadworthy vehicles

The consultation process started on 1st March 2021 and will continue until 23:59 on 29th March 2021. To have your say on the changes, you’ll need to make sure you complete the online response form before the closing date.

Improving safety awareness

Highways England is working together with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) to update guidance and ensure journeys on motorways and high-speed roads are made safer. Improving our understanding of what to do in an emergency is another key focus.

Jeremy Phillips, Highways England’s head of road safety, said: “The Highway Code is the go-to guide for road users to help make journeys as safe, efficient and sustainable as possible.”

He admitted that more needs to be done to help motorists understand exactly how modern motorways and high-speed roads operate.

Mr Phillips added that the updated edition of the Highway Code will help inform the next generation of road users, as well as provide important updates to those with “many miles under their belt,” to help us all stay safer.

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