Millions of drivers could face £100 on-the-spot police fine for common car error

A busy motorway

The police could issue an on-the-spot fine

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 10/08/2023

- 16:45

Motorists could be handed a fine inside their car for a mistake which more than half of drivers could fall for

Drivers could be hit with a £100 on-the-spot fine this year if they are caught out by a little-known motoring error.

Failure to keep up with simple maintenance tasks could see motorists hit with costs and even receive three points on their driving licence.

If someone is out on the roads and they have not topped up their washer fluid or checked their windscreen wipers, they could be fined.

Data has found that 53 per cent of motorists check their fluid levels less than once every three months, with one in 20 not checking at all.

Checking engine oil

Drivers should check their fluid levels before setting off


Section 34 of the Road Vehicles Regulations 1986 states that cars must be fitted with a windscreen wiper and washer capable of cleaning their windscreen at all times.

According to the RAC, if a car doesn’t have any washer fluid, motorists could be charged with careless driving.

For this offence, the police can issue an on-the-spot fixed penalty notice of £100 and licence points.

Lower than necessary levels increases the risk of a breakdown and could seriously damage the vehicle.

This could be even more disastrous over the summer with many drivers out on the road with 18 per cent of drivers admitting to not having roadside assistance cover.

The data, from Skoda, found that motorists are dramatically unprepared in the event of a breakdown.

More than four in 10 drivers don’t carry additional water in case of long delays, while more than half avoid keeping a first aid kit in their car.

It is believed that more than 12 million leisure trips have already been taken, with more expected over the coming months.

During the busier periods of the year, drivers should avoid travelling at peak times to avoid the bulk of the traffic, especially on motorways.

Experts from Skoda are urging motorists to ensure their vehicles are prepared in the event of a breakdown or emergency.

This could include packing high-visibility jackets. While they are not a legal requirement in the UK, they could come in handy if the driver and passengers need to get out of the car at night.

Before setting off on a long journey, motorists should ensure all of their fluid levels are safe to reduce the chance of a breakdown or being fined.


A man checking his car engine

Motorists should prepare before a long trip to avoid the chance of breaking down


In the event of bad traffic and potential gridlock, drivers are advised to make sure they have enough water to reduce the effect of fatigue and dehydration when at the wheel.

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