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Road Traffic Act 1988

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  1. Introductory Text

  2. Part I Principal Road Safety Provisions

    1. Driving offences

      1. 1. Causing death by dangerous driving.

      2. 2. Dangerous driving.

      3. 2A. Meaning of dangerous driving.

      4. 2B.Causing death by careless, or inconsiderate, driving

      5. 3. Careless, and inconsiderate, driving.

      6. 3ZA.Meaning of careless, or inconsiderate, driving

      7. 3ZB.Causing death by driving: unlicensed, disqualified or uninsured drivers

      8. 3A. Causing death by careless driving when under influence of drink or drugs.

    2. Motor vehicles: drink and drugs

      1. 4. Driving, or being in charge, when under influence of drink or drugs.

      2. 5. Driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle with alcohol concentration above prescribed limit.

      3. 6. Power to administer preliminary tests

      4. 6A.Preliminary breath test

      5. 6B.Preliminary impairment test

      6. 6C.Preliminary drug test

      7. 6D.Arrest

      8. 6E.Power of entry

      9. 7. Provision of specimens for analysis.

      10. 7A. Specimens of blood taken from persons incapable of consenting

      11. 8. Choice of specimens of breath.

      12. 9. Protection for hospital patients.

      13. 10. Detention of persons affected by alcohol or a drug.

      14. 11. Interpretation of sections 4 to 10.

    3. Motor racing and motoring events on public ways

      1. 12. Motor racing on public ways.

      2. 13. Regulation of motoring events on public ways.

      3. 13A. Disapplication of sections 1 to 3 for authorised motoring events.

    4. Protective measures: seat belts, helmets, etc.

      1. 14. Seat belts: adults.

      2. 15. Restriction on carrying children not wearing seat belts in motor vehicles.

      3. 15A. Safety equipment for children in motor vehicles.

      4. 15B.Requirement to notify bus passengers to wear seat belts

      5. 16. Wearing of protective headgear.

      6. 17. Protective helmets for motor cyclists.

      7. 18. Authorisation of head-worn appliances for use on motor cycles.

    5. Stopping on verges, etc., or in dangerous positions, etc.

      1. 19. Prohibition of parking of HGVs on verges, central reservations and footways.

      2. 19A. Prohibition of parking of vehicles on verges, central reservations and footways.

      3. 20. Definition of “heavy commercial vehicle” for the purposes of section 19.

      4. 21. Prohibition of driving or parking on cycle tracks.

      5. 22. Leaving vehicles in dangerous positions.

      6. 22A. Causing danger to road-users.

    6. Other restrictions in interests of safety

      1. 23. Restriction of carriage of persons on motor cycles.

      2. 24. Restriction of carriage of persons on bicycles.

      3. 25. Tampering with motor vehicles.

      4. 26. Holding or getting on to vehicle in order to be towed or carried.

      5. 27. Control of dogs on roads.

    7. Cycling offences and cycle racing

      1. 28. Dangerous cycling.

      2. 29. Careless, and inconsiderate, cycling.

      3. 30. Cycling when under influence of drink or drugs.

      4. 31. Regulation of cycle racing on public ways.

      5. 32. Electrically assisted pedal cycles.

    8. Use of motor vehicles away from roads

      1. 33. Control of use of footpaths and bridleways for motor vehicle trials.

      2. 34. Prohibition of driving mechanically propelled vehicles elsewhere than on roads.

      3. 34A. Exceptions to presumption in section 34(2).

    9. Directions to traffic and to pedestrians and traffic signs

      1. 35. Drivers to comply with traffic directions.

      2. 36. Drivers to comply with traffic signs.

      3. 37. Directions to pedestrians.

    10. Promotion of road safety

      1. 38. The Highway Code.

      2. 39. Powers of Secretary of State and local authorities as to giving road safety information and training.

      3. 40.Road safety grants

  3. Part II Construction and Use of Vehicles and Equipment

    1. Using vehicle in dangerous condition

      1. 40A. Using vehicle in dangerous condition etc.

    2. General regulation of construction, use etc.

      1. 41. Regulation of construction, weight, equipment and use of vehicles.

      2. 41A. Breach of requirement as to brakes, steering-gear or tyres.

      3. 41B. Breach of requirement as to weight: goods and passenger vehicles.

      4. 41C.Breach of requirement as to speed assessment equipment detection devices

      5. 41D.Breach of requirements as to control of vehicle, mobile telephones etc.

      6. 42. Breach of other construction and use requirements.

      7. 43. Temporary exemption from application of regulations under section 41.

      8. 44. Authorisation of use on roads of special vehicles not complying with regulations under section 41.

    3. Tests of vehicles other than goods vehicles to which section 49 applies

      1. 45. Tests of satisfactory condition of vehicles.

      2. 46. Regulations under section 45.

      3. 46A. Use of records of vehicle examinations, etc.

      4. 46B. Evidence from records of vehicle examinations.

      5. 47. Obligatory test certificates.

      6. 48. Supplementary provisions about test certificates.

    4. Tests of certain classes of goods vehicles

      1. 49. Tests of satisfactory condition of goods vehicles and determination of plated weights, etc.

      2. 49A.Use of records of goods vehicle examinations, etc.

      3. 50. Appeals against determinations.

      4. 51. Particular aspects of regulations under section 49.

      5. 52. Supplementary provisions about tests, etc., of goods vehicles.

      6. 53. Obligatory goods vehicle test certificates.

    5. Approval of design, construction, equipment and marking of vehicles

      1. 54. Type approval requirements.

      2. 55. Type approval certificates.

      3. 56. Conditions of, and cancellation or suspension of, type approval certificates.

      4. 57. Certificates of conformity.

      5. 58. Minister’s approval certificates.

      6. 59. Supplementary provisions as to certificates of conformity and Minister’s approval certificates.

      7. 60. Appeals.

      8. 60. Appeals.

      9. 61. Regulations for the purposes of sections 54 to 60.

      10. 62. Other supplementary provisions.

      11. 63. Obligatory type approval certificates, certificates of conformity and Minister’s approval certificates.

      12. 63A. Alteration of plated weights for goods vehicles without examination.

      13. 64. Using goods vehicle with unauthorised weights as well as authorised weights marked on it.

      14. 64A.Failure to hold EC certificate of conformity for unregistered motor cycle or tractor

      15. 65. Vehicles and parts not to be sold without required certificate of conformity or Minister’s approval certificate.

      16. 65A.Motor cycles not to be sold without EC certificate of conformity

    6. Conditions for grant of excise licence

      1. 66. Regulations prohibiting the grant of excise licences for certain vehicles except on compliance with certain conditions.

    7. Vehicle examiners

      1. 66A. Appointment of examiners.

    8. Testing vehicles on roads

      1. 67. Testing of condition of vehicles on roads.

      2. 67A. Remedying defects discovered on roadside test.

      3. 67B. Tests to check whether defects have been remedied.

    9. Inspection of public passenger vehicles and goods vehicles

      1. 68. Inspection of public passenger vehicles and goods vehicles.

    10. Prohibition of unfit vehicles

      1. 69. Power to prohibit driving of unfit vehicles.

      2. 69A. Prohibitions conditional on inspection etc.

      3. 70. Power to prohibit driving of overloaded goods vehicles.

      4. 71. Unfit and overloaded vehicles: offences.

      5. 72. Removal of prohibitions.

      6. 72A. Official testing stations.

      7. 73. Provisions supplementary to sections 69 to 72.

    11. Miscellaneous provisions about vehicles and vehicle parts

      1. 74. Operator’s duty to inspect, and keep records of inspections of, goods vehicles.

      2. 75. Vehicles not to be sold in unroadworthy condition or altered so as to be unroadworthy.

      3. 76. Fitting and supply of defective or unsuitable vehicle parts.

      4. 77. Testing condition of used vehicles at sale rooms, etc.

      5. 78. Weighing of motor vehicles.

      6. 79. Further provisions relating to weighing of motor vehicles.

      7. 80. Approval marks.

    12. Pedal cycles and horse-drawn vehicles

      1. 81. Regulation of brakes, bells etc., on pedal cycles.

      2. 82. Regulation of brakes on horse-drawn vehicles.

    13. Miscellaneous

      1. 83. Offences to do with reflectors and tail lamps.

      2. 84. Appointment of officials and destination of fees.

      3. 85. Interpretation of Part II.

      4. 86. Index to Part II.

  4. Part III Licensing of drivers of vehicles

    1. Requirement to hold licence

      1. 87. Drivers of motor vehicles to have driving licences.

      2. 88. Exceptions.

    2. Tests

      1. 89. Tests of competence to drive.

      2. 89A. The alternative requirements to those in section 89.

      3. 90. Review of conduct of test.

      4. 91. Repayment of test fees.

    3. Physical fitness

      1. 92. Requirements as to physical fitness of drivers.

      2. 93. Revocation of licence because of disability or prospective disability.

      3. 94. Provision of information, etc. relating to disabilities.

      4. 94A. Driving after refusal or revocation of licence.

      5. 95. Notification of refusal of insurance on grounds of health.

      6. 96. Driving with uncorrected defective eyesight.

    4. Granting of licences, their form and duration

      1. 97. Grant of licences.

      2. 98. Form of licence.

      3. 98A.Compulsory surrender of old-form licences

      4. 99. Duration of licences.

    5. Driver training

      1. 99ZA. Compulsory driver training courses.

      2. 99ZB. Requirements to complete training courses.

      3. 99ZC. Driver training courses: supplementary.

    6. Community licence holders

      1. 99A. Authorisation to drive in Great Britain.

      2. 99B. Information about resident Community licence holders.

      3. 99C. Revocation of authorisation conferred by Community licence because of disability or prospective disability.

      4. 99D. Information relating to disabilities etc.

      5. 99E. Return of Community licences delivered to Secretary of State.

    7. Appeals

      1. 100. Appeals relating to licences.

    8. Disqualification (otherwise than on conviction)

      1. 101. Disqualification of persons under age.

      2. 102. Disqualification to prevent duplication of licences.

    9. Disqualification if disqualified in Northern Ireland etc.

      1. 102A.Disqualification while disqualified in Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, Channel Islands or Gibraltar

    10. Effects of disqualification

      1. 103. Obtaining licence, or driving, while disqualified.

    11. Miscellaneous

      1. 104. Conduct of proceedings in certain courts by or against the Secretary of State.

      2. 105. Regulations.

      3. 106. Destination of fees for licences, etc.

      4. 107. Service of notices.

      5. 108. Interpretation.

      6. 109. Provisions as to Northern Ireland drivers’ licences.

      7. 109A.Counterparts issued to Northern Ireland licence holders

      8. 109B.Revocation of authorisation conferred by Northern Ireland licence because of disability or prospective disability

      9. 109C.Information relating to disabilities etc

  5. Part IV Licensing of drivers of large goods vehicles and passenger-carrying vehicles.

    1. Licensing of drivers of large goods vehicles and passenger-carrying vehicles.

      1. 110.(1) Licences under Part III of this Act to drive...

      2. 111. Functions of traffic commissioners.

      3. 112. Grants of licences: fitness as regards conduct.

      4. 113. Grant of licences: referral of matters of conduct to traffic commissioners.

      5. 114. Conditions of certain licences.

      6. 115. Revocation or suspension of licences.

      7. 115A.Community licence holders: cessation of authorisation, etc.

      8. 116. Revocation or suspension of licences: referral of matters of conduct to traffic commissioners.

      9. 117. Disqualification on revocation of licence.

      10. 117A. Community licences: disqualification etc.

      11. 118. Revoked or suspended licences: surrender, return and endorsement.

      12. 119. Appeals to magistrates’ court or sheriff

      13. 120. Regulations.

      14. 121. Interpretation.

      15. 122. Provisions as to Northern Ireland licences.

  6. Part V Driving Instruction

    1. Instructors to be registered or licensed

      1. 123. Driving instruction for payment to be given only by registered or licensed persons.

      2. 123A.Paid driving instruction: offences

      3. 124. Exemption of police instructors from prohibition imposed by section 123.

    2. Registration

      1. 125. The register of approved instructors.

      2. 125ZA.Conditions of registration

      3. 125A. Registration of disabled persons.

      4. 125B. Provisions supplementary to section 125A.

      5. 126. Duration of registration.

      6. 127. Extension of duration of registration.

      7. 128. Removal of names from register.

      8. 128ZA.Suspension of registration by Registrar

      9. 128ZB.Compensation in respect of suspension

      10. 128A.Power to give direction as to further applications

    3. Licences

      1. 129. Licences for giving instruction so as to obtain practical experience.

      2. 130. Revocation of licences.

    4. Appeals

      1. 131. Appeals.

    5. Compensation

      1. 131A.Compensation in respect of suspension

    6. Examinations and tests

      1. 132. Examinations and tests of ability to give driving instruction.

      2. 133. Review of examinations.

      3. 133ZA.Training

    7. Disabled persons: emergency control certificates, etc

      1. 133A. Assessment of disabled person’s ability to control a motor car in an emergency.

      2. 133B. Further assessments.

      3. 133C. Duty to disclose further disability.

      4. 133D. Offences relating to giving by disabled person of paid driving instruction.

    8. General and supplemental

      1. 134. Power to alter conditions for entry or retention in, and removal from, register and for grant or revocation of licences.

      2. 135. Power to prescribe form of certificate of registration, etc.

      3. 136. Surrender of certificates and licences.

      4. 137. Production of certificates and licences to constables and authorised persons.

      5. 138. Offences by corporations.

      6. 139. Service of notices.

      7. 140. Receipts.

      8. 141. Regulations.

      9. 141A. Meaning of “motor car".

      10. 142. Index to Part V.

  7. Part VI Third-Party Liabilities

    1. Compulsory insurance or security against third-party risks

      1. 143. Users of motor vehicles to be insured or secured against third-party risks.

      2. 144. Exceptions from requirement of third-party insurance or security.

      3. 144A.Offence of keeping vehicle which does not meet insurance requirements

      4. 144B.Exceptions to section 144A offence

      5. 144C.Fixed penalty notices

      6. 144D.Section 144A offence: supplementary

      7. 145. Requirements in respect of policies of insurance.

      8. 146. Requirements in respect of securities.

      9. 147. Issue and surrender of certificates of insurance and of security.

      10. 148. Avoidance of certain exceptions to policies or securities.

      11. 149. Avoidance of certain agreements as to liability towards passengers.

      12. 150. Insurance or security in respect of private use of vehicle to cover use under car-sharing arrangements.

      13. 151. Duty of insurers or persons giving security to satisfy judgment against persons insured or secured against third-party risks.

      14. 152. Exceptions to section 151.

      15. 153. Bankruptcy, etc., of insured or secured persons not to affect claims by third parties.

      16. 154. Duty to give information as to insurance or security where claim made.

      17. 155. Deposits.

      18. 156. Power to require evidence of insurance or security on application for vehicle excise licence.

    2. Payments for treatment of traffic casualties

      1. 157. Payment for hospital treatment of traffic casualties.

      2. 158. Payment for emergency treatment of traffic casualties.

      3. 159. Supplementary provisions as to payments for treatment.

    3. General

      1. 159A.Disclosure of information

      2. 160. Regulations.

      3. 161. Interpretation.

      4. 162. Index to Part VI.

  8. Part VII Miscellaneous and General

    1. Requirement for approval of persons to assist at tests

      1. 162A.Approved test assistants

    2. Powers of constables and other authorised persons

      1. 163. Power of police to stop vehicles.

      2. 164. Power of constables to require production of driving licence and in certain cases statement of date of birth.

      3. 165. Power of constables to obtain names and addresses of drivers and others, and to require production of evidence of insurance or security and test certificates.

      4. 165A.Power to seize vehicles driven without licence or insurance

      5. 165B.Retention etc. of vehicles seized under section 165A

      6. 166. Powers of certain officers as respects goods vehicles and passenger-carrying vehicles.

      7. 167. Power of arrest in Scotland for reckless or careless driving or cycling.

    3. Duty to give name and address

      1. 168. Failure to give, or giving false, name and address in case of reckless or careless or inconsiderate driving or cycling.

      2. 169. Pedestrian contravening constable’s direction to stop to give name and address.

    4. Duties in case of accident

      1. 170. Duty of driver to stop, report accident and give information or documents.

    5. Other duties to give information or documents

      1. 171. Duty of owner of motor vehicle to give information for verifying compliance with requirement of compulsory insurance or security.

      2. 172. Duty to give information as to identity of driver etc in certain circumstances.

    6. Forgery, false statements, etc.

      1. 173. Forgery of documents, etc.

      2. 174. False statements and withholding material information.

      3. 175. Issue of false documents.

      4. 175. Falsification of documents.

      5. 176. Power to seize articles in respect of which offences under sections 173 to 175 may have been committed.

      6. 177. Impersonation of authorised examiner, etc.

    7. Offences in Scotland

      1. 178. Taking motor vehicle without authority, etc.

    8. Inquiries

      1. 179. General power to hold enquiries.

      2. 180. General provisions as to inquiries.

      3. 181. General provisions as to accident inquiries.

      4. 182. Special provisions as to accident inquiries in Greater London.

    9. Application to the Crown

      1. 183. Application to the Crown.

      2. 184. Application of sections 5 to 10 to persons subject to service discipline.

    10. Interpretation

      1. 185. Meaning of “motor vehicle” and other expressions relating to vehicles.

      2. 186. Supplementary provisions about those expressions.

      3. 187. Articulated vehicles.

      4. 188. Hover vehicles.

      5. 189. Certain vehicles not to be treated as motor vehicles.

      6. 190. Method of calculating weight of motor vehicles and trailers.

      7. 191. Interpretation of statutory references to carriages.

      8. 192. General interpretation of Act.

      9. 192A. Tramcars and other guided vehicles: drink and drugs.

      10. 193. Exemptions for tramcars, trolley vehicles, railway locomotives, carriages and trucks.

      11. 193A. Tramcars and trolley vehicles.

      12. 194. General index.

    11. Supplementary

      1. 195. Provisions as to regulations.

      2. 196. Provision, etc., of weighbridges.

      3. 197. Short title, commencement and extent.

  9. SCHEDULES

    1. SCHEDULE 1

      Supplementary Provisions in Connection with Proceedings for Offences under Sections 15A, 17 and 18(4)

      1. Proceedings in England and Wales

        1. 1.(1) A person against whom proceedings are brought in England...

        2. 2.(1) Where— (a) it appears that an offence under section...

        3. 3.(1) Where proceedings are brought in England and Wales against...

      2. Proceedings in Scotland

        1. 4.(1) Where a contravention of section 15A, 17 or 18(4)...

      3. Proceedings in Great Britain

        1. 5.(1A) Subject to the provisions of this paragraph, in any...

        2. 6.(1) An accused who in any proceedings for an offence...

        3. 7.In this Schedule, “equipment” means equipment to which section 15A...

    2. SCHEDULE 2

      Deferred Tests of Condition of Vehicles

      1. 1.Where the driver is the owner of the vehicle, he...

      2. 2.When the driver is not the owner of the vehicle...

      3. 3.(1) Where under the preceding provisions of this Schedule a...

      4. 4.The owner of the vehicle must produce it, or secure...

      5. 5.(1) References in this Schedule to the owner of a...

    3. SCHEDULE 2A

      Offence of keeping vehicle which does not meet insurance requirements: immobilisation, removal and disposal of vehicles

      1. Immobilisation

        1. 1.(1) Regulations may make provision with respect to any case...

      2. Offences connected with immobilisation

        1. 2.(1) The regulations may provide that a person contravening provision...

      3. Removal and disposal of vehicles

        1. 3.(1) The regulations may make provision with respect to any...

      4. Offences as to securing possession of vehicles

        1. 4.The regulations may provide that where— (a) a person makes...

      5. Disputes

        1. 5.The regulations may make provision about the proceedings to be...

      6. Authorised persons

        1. 6.As regards anything falling to be done under the regulations...

      7. Application of Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988

        1. 7.The regulations may make provision for the application of any...

      8. Interpretation

        1. 8.(1) The regulations may make provision as to the meaning...

        2. 9.(1) The regulations may make provision as to the meaning...

        3. 10.In this Schedule— (a) references to an immobilisation device are...

    4. SCHEDULE 2A

      Form of seat belt symbol for buses

    5. SCHEDULE 3

      1. 1.On an appeal under section 131 of this Act, the...

      2. 2.(1) The Secretary of State shall refer every such appeal...

      3. 3.(1) The Secretary of State may by rules made by...

      4. 4.(1) The Secretary of State may on an appeal under...

      5. 5.Section 180 of this Act, in its application to an...

    6. SCHEDULE 4

      1. 1.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      2. 2.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      3. 3.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      4. 3A.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      5. 4.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      6. 5.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      7. 6.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      8. 7.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      9. 8.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      10. 9.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      11. 10.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      12. 11.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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