Your Guide to Road Traffic Law

There are many laws a motorist has to abide by. You are taught them when you learn to drive, but with so much information to take on board, it is hardly surprising that some of them get forgotten as time goes by. Whether you are a first time driver, or have been on the road for years, your understanding of the law might be a little hazy.

As road traffic lawyers in Glasgow, we are always dealing with people who feel trapped and confused by the law. Here’s a quick overview of some of the most important areas of road traffic law that you really need to know.


One of the more common road traffic law offences. All roads have a set speed limit, put in place to ensure the safety of drivers, pedestrians, and other road users. Travelling faster than the set speed limit is a very common offence that can have serious consequences.

The penalty for speeding depends upon where you are and how much faster than the legal limit you were driving. Speeding fines start at £100 and can go to a maximum of £2,500. You could also find yourself with 3-6 points added to your license, and be required to appear before court.

If your speeding was very far over the limit you could be automatically disqualified for at least six months, and charged with Dangerous Driving (see below).

Mobile Phone Offences

Using your mobile phone while driving has been a road traffic law offence since 2007. If you accept a fixed penalty at the roadside you will have to pay £60, while taking the matter to court could land you with a fine of up to £1,000. You will also receive three penalty points on your license. Drivers of goods or passenger vehicles could find themselves with a fine of up to £2,500. If a clean driving license is required for your work, a mobile phone offence could lose you your job.

Scottish courts also have the discretionary power to disqualify you from driving if you are caught using your mobile phone.

Drink Driving

Drink driving is a serious road traffic law offence that can have severe consequences, both for yourself and those around you. The drink driving limit in Scotland has recently been lowered, making it possible to fail a breath, blood, or urine test with a smaller amount of alcohol in your system. If you are suspected of drink driving you will be breathalysed on the roadside. If you have 22 microgrammes of alcohol or more per 100ml of breath you will be taken to a police station for further tests.

If found guilty of drink driving you could be hit with a heavy fine, receive several points on your licence, be required to attend a rehabilitation or driver training programme, or be disqualified from driving.

Dangerous Driving

Dangerous driving can be a complicated area of road traffic law, one that encompasses many types of offences. What is determined as dangerous driving can vary, but driving is said to be classed as dangerous if it falls below the standard of a competent driver, or if a competent driver would find it obvious that your driving was dangerous. You can receive up to 11 penalty points for dangerous driving, an automatic 12 month disqualification from driving, and even up to two years in prison.

If you have been charged with any kind of road traffic offence, get in touch with our road traffic lawyers in Glasgow today.