Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984

142 General interpretation of Act.E+W+S

(1)In this Act, except where the context otherwise requires, the following expressions have the meanings hereby assigned to them respectively, that is to say—

  • bridge authority” means the authority or person responsible for the maintenance of a bridge;

  • bridleway” means a way over which the public have the following, but no other, rights of way, that is to say, a right of way on foot and a right of way on horseback or leading a horse, with or without a right to drive animals of any description along the way;

  • [F1credit card” and “debit card” have the meanings given by section 35A(6) of this Act;]

  • designation order” means an order under section 45 of this Act (including any order so made by virtue of section 50(1) of this Act) and “designated parking place” means a parking place designated by a designation order;

  • disabled person’s badge” means any badge issued, or having effect as if issued, under any regulations for the time being in force under section 21 of the M1Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970;

  • disabled person’s vehicle” means a vehicle lawfully displaying a disabled person’s badge;

  • “driver”, where a separate person acts as steersman of a motor vehicle, includes that person as well as any other person engaged in the driving of the vehicle, and “drive” and “driving” shall be construed accordingly;

  • excess charge” has the meaning assigned to it by section 46(1) of this Act;

  • experimental traffic order” has the meaning assigned to it by section 9(1) of this Act;

  • except in section 71(2) of this Act, “footpath” means a way over which the public has a right of way on foot only;

  • [F2GLA road” (subject to subsection (4) below) has the same meaning as in the M2Highways Act 1980 (see sections 329(1) and 14D(1) of that Act);]

  • [F2GLA side road” shall be construed in accordance with section 124A(9) of this Act;]

  • F3 . . .

  • initial charge” has the meaning assigned to it by section 46(1) of this Act;

  • F3 . . .

  • F3 . . .

  • magistrates’ court[F4has the same meaning] as in the M3Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980;

  • the Ministers” means the Secretaries of State charged with general responsibility under this Act in relation to England, Wales and Scotland respectively;

  • subject to section 111(3) and (4) of, and paragraph 11(2) and (3) of Schedule 12 to, this Act, “owner”, in relation to a vehicle which is subject to a hiring agreement or hire-purchase agreement, means the person in possession of the vehicle under that agreement;

  • [F5off-street parking accommodation” means parking accommodation for motor vehicles off the highway or, in Scotland, off the road;]

  • parking device” has the meaning assigned to it by [F6section 35(3B) or, as the case may be,] section 51(4) of this Act;

  • parking meter” has the meaning assigned to it by section 46(2)(a) of this Act;

  • prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Secretary of State;

  • [F7public road” has the same meaning as in the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984;]

  • public service vehicle[F8has the same meaning] as in the M4Public Passenger Vehicles Act 1981;

  • [F9road”—

    (a)

    in England and Wales, means any length of highway or of any other road to which the public has access, and includes bridges over which a road passes, and

    (b)

    in Scotland, has the same meaning as in the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984;]

  • F3 . . .

  • [F10 “special road”, in England and Wales, has the same meaning as in the Highways Act 1980, and in Scotland has the same meaning as in the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984;]

  • statutory”, in relation to any prohibition, restriction, requirement or provision, means contained in, or having effect under, any enactment (including any enactment contained in this Act);

  • “street parking place” and “off-street parking place” refer respectively to parking places on land which does, and on land which does not, form part of a road;

  • [F11traffic authority” and “local traffic authority” have the meaning given by section 121A of this Act;]

  • traffic sign” has the meaning assigned to it by section 64(1) of this Act; and

  • traffic regulation order” has the meaning assigned to it by section 1 of this Act.

  • [F2trunk road” has the same meaning as in the M5Highways Act 1980 (see section 329(1) of that Act)]

[F12(1A)In this Act—

(a)any reference to a county shall be construed in relation to Wales as including a reference to a county borough;

(b)any reference to a county council shall be construed in relation to Wales as including a reference to a county borough council; and

(c)section 17(4) and (5) of the Local Government (Wales) Act 1994 (references to counties and districts to be construed generally in relation to Wales as references to counties and county boroughs) shall not apply.]

(2)Any reference in this Act to a tricycle shall be construed as including a reference to a cycle which is not a motor vehicle and has 4 or more wheels.

(3)References in this Act to a class of vehicles or traffic (other than the references in section 17) shall be construed as references to a class defined or described by reference to any characteristics of the vehicles or traffic or to any other circumstances whatsoever.

[F13(4)Any reference in this Act to a GLA road includes a reference to a GLA side road.]

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Amendments (Textual)

F2S. 142(1): definitions of “GLA road", “GLA sideroad" and “trunk road" in s. 142(1) inserted (3.7.2000) by 1999 c. 29, s. 292(3) (with Sch. 12 para. 9(1)); S.I. 2000/801, art. 2, Sch.

F3S. 142(1): definition of "highway authority", "local highway authority", "local roads authority" and "roads authority" omitted (1.11.1991) by virtue of New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22, SIF 59, 108), s. 168(1), Sch. 8 para. 78(2); which is in force for Scotland only by S.I. 1991/2286, art. 2(2), Sch. 2 and for England and Wales only by S.I. 1991/2288, art. 3, Sch.

F4Words in the definition of “magistrates' court" in s. 142(1) substituted (27.9.1999) by 1999 c. 22, ss. 76(2), 108(3)(c), Sch. 10 para. 38 (with s. 107, Sch. 14 para. 7(2))

F5S. 142(1): definition of "off-street parking accommodation" inserted (1.11.1991) by New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22, SIF 59, 108), s. 168(1), Sch. 8 para. 78(3); which insertion is in force for Scotland only by S.I. 1991/2286, art. 2(2), Sch. 2 and for England and Wales only by S.I. 1991/2288, art. 3, Sch.

F9S. 142(1): definition of "road" substituted (1.11.1991) by New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22, SIF 59, 108), s. 168(1), Sch. 8 para. 78(4); which substitution is in force for Scotland only by S.I. 1991/2286, art. 2(2), Sch. 2 and for England and Wales only by S.I. 1991/2288, art. 3, Sch.

F10S. 142(1): definition of "special road" substituted (1.11.1991) by New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22, SIF 59, 108), s. 168(1), Sch. 8 para. 78(5); which substitution is in force for Scotland only by S.I. 1991/2286, art. 2(2), Sch. 2 and for England and Wales only by S.I. 1991/2288, art. 3, Sch.

F11S. 142(1): definition of "traffic authority" and "local traffic authority" inserted (1.11.1991) by New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22, SIF 59, 108), s. 168(1), Sch. 8 para. 78(6); which insertion is in force for Scotland only by S.I. 1991/2286, art. 2(2), Sch. 2 and for England and Wales only by S.I. 1991/2288, art. 3, Sch.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S. 142(1) definition of "disabled person's badge" applied (5.7.1993) by Road Traffic Act 1991 (c. 40, SIF 107:1), s. 70(3); S.I. 1993/1461, art. 2(d)

Marginal Citations

M41981 c. 14(107:1).