Drivers urged to use common household items to clear windscreen frost or risk hefty fines

Car covered in frost

Drivers could be fined for not clearing away frost

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 29/11/2023

- 08:24

A motorist in Scotland was hit with a driving ban for not clearing frost from his windscreen

Drivers are being urged to clear frost from their windscreens or they could face a fine, with experts highlighting how motorists can make use of household items to get the job done.

Temperatures are already dropping with the Met Office issuing a number of yellow snow and ice warnings applying to various parts of the UK this week.

Scotland and Eastern England are most likely to experience snow and ice, with warnings of showers falling as snow which could lead to icy patches and hazardous conditions.

Motorists are being urged to ensure they clear their windscreen before setting off or they could face hefty fines of £60 or £100.

Frosted windows

The driver was handed a 12-month disqualification 


Some experts are even calling on drivers to beat the weather and prepare their vehicle the night before by spraying vinegar on their windscreen.

Vinegar’s freezing point is a lot lower than water, meaning the water does not have a chance to settle and freeze on top of the vinegar.

This should help prevent frost from building up, and if it does, drivers will be able to clear the frost or ice more easily with a scraper.

Experts at Icelandic company Lotus Car Rental, have also suggested that drivers remain patient in the morning and allow it to clear naturally.

They said: “From credit cards to key rings, it’s common for many people to grab the first item they have to shovel the ice out of the way.

“Both of these options risk breaking or chipping the glass of the windscreen - which can be expensive to fix.

“Instead, leave a good 10-15 minutes to leave your front and rear demister on max to see the ice begin to melt from the heat. You’re then able to wipe away any excess water with your wipers.”

David Hyslop was driving with a “very limited view of the road” when he was charged with road traffic offences in December 2022.

The 54-year-old was stopped by Scottish police on the A701 at Dumfries when his van was seen with a frozen windscreen and windows.

Images posted on social media by Police Scotland show that the driver had only cleared a small gap at the bottom of the windscreen and side mirrors.

The majority of the van was still covered in frost with the driver being unable to see anything but the road ahead of him.

Following a trial at Dumfries Sheriff Court on November 22, 2023, the motorist received a 12-month driving disqualification and a £500 fine.

Inspector Gavin McHallum commented on the conviction, saying it was vital for drivers to ensure their windscreen was completely clear before setting off on their journey.

He said: “As we move into the winter months and a drop in temperatures I hope this case acts as a reminder of the importance of ensuring your vehicle is in a safe condition to be driven on our roads.


Frosted windows

The driver could barely see out of the windows


“It is absolutely vital that there is no snow or ice on your windows before you set off so please take the time to properly clear your vehicle because if you cannot see clearly you are putting yourself and others on the road at risk.”

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