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Road Traffic Act 1988

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

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

(1)The Secretary of State may make regulations generally as to the use of motor vehicles and trailers on roads, their construction and equipment and the conditions under which they may be so used.

Subsections (2) to (4) below do not affect the generality of this subsection.

(2)In particular, the regulations may make provision with respect to any of the following matters—

(a)the width, height and length of motor vehicles and trailers and the load carried by them, the diameter of wheels, and the width, nature and condition of tyres, of motor vehicles and trailers,

(b)the emission or consumption of smoke, fumes or vapour and the emission of sparks, ashes and grit,

(c)noise,

(d)the maximum weight unladen of heavy locomotives and heavy motor cars, and the maximum weight laden of motor vehicles and trailers, and the maximum weight to be transmitted to the road or any specified area of the road by a motor vehicle or trailer of any class or by any part or parts of such a vehicle or trailer in contact with the road, and the conditions under which the weights may be required to be tested,

(e)the particulars to be marked on motor vehicles and trailers,

(f)the towing of or drawing of vehicles by motor vehicles,

(g)the number and nature of brakes, and for securing that brakes, silencers and steering gear are efficient and kept in proper working order,

(h)lighting equipment and reflectors,

(j)the testing and inspection, by persons authorised by or under the regulations, of the brakes, silencers, steering gear, tyres, lighting equipment and reflectors of motor vehicles and trailers on any premises where they are (if the owner of the premises consents),

(k)the appliances to be fitted for—

(i)signalling the approach of a motor vehicle, or

(ii)enabling the driver of a motor vehicle to become aware of the approach of another vehicle from the rear, or

(iii)intimating any intended change of speed or direction of a motor vehicle,

and the use of any such appliance, and for securing that any such appliance is efficient and kept in proper working order,

(l)for prohibiting the use of appliances fitted to motor vehicles for signalling their approach, being appliances for signalling by sound, at any times, or on or in any roads or localities, specified in the regulations.

(3)The Secretary of State may, as respects goods vehicles, make regulations under this section—

(a)prescribing other descriptions of weight which are not to be exceeded in the case of such vehicles,

(b)providing for the marking on such vehicles of weights of any description or other particulars by means of plates (of any material) fixed to them,

(c)providing for the circumstances in which any particulars which are to be marked on such vehicles are to be so marked,

(d)providing that weights of any description or other particulars which are to be marked on particular goods vehicles may be determined in accordance with regulations under section 49 of this Act.

(4)Regulations under this section with respect to lighting equipment and reflectors—

(a)may require that lamps be kept lit at such times and in such circumstances as may be specified in the regulations, and

(b)may extend, in like manner as to motor vehicles and trailers, to vehicles of any description used on roads, whether or not they are mechanically propelled.

(5)Different regulations may be made under this section as respects different classes of vehicles or as respects the same class of vehicles in different circumstances and as respects different times of the day or night and as respects roads in different localities.

(6)In framing regulations under this section prescribing a weight of any description which is not to be exceeded in the case of goods vehicles of a class for which a certificate of conformity or Minister’s approval certificate may be issued under section 57 or 58 of this Act the Secretary of State must have regard to the design weight of the like description determined by virtue of section 54 of this Act for vehicles of that class and must secure that the first-mentioned weight does not exceed the design weight.

(7)In this Part of this Act—

  • “construction and use requirements” means requirements, whether applicable generally or at specified times or in specified circumstances, imposed under this section,

  • “plated particulars” means such particulars as are required to be marked on a goods vehicle in pursuance of regulations under this section by means of a plate,

  • “plated weights” means such weights as are required to be so marked.

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