MOTORISTS could land themselves with a £40 fine simply for waiting in their car with the engine running.
It is illegal to keep an car engine idling under Section 42 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
The act enforces Rule 123 of the Highway Code, which says: "You must not leave a vehicle’s engine running unnecessarily while that vehicle is stationary on a public road."
Breaking this law can result in a £20 fixed-penalty fine, rising to £40 if not paid within the timeframe, and local councils may add an additional fine on top of this.
In London, for example, emission measures will escalate this fine to £80.
Car finance experts CarMoney has revealed the impact motorists reducing car idling could have on the environment and found that 10 seconds of idling wastes more fuel than restarting the engine.
Marketing and Partnerships Manager at CarMoney Andrew Marshall said: “Now more than ever it is important to be aware of our impact on the environment.
"By minimising car idling on our daily commutes, school drop-offs and simply waiting in traffic, we can contribute less CO2 emissions.
“Aside from switching to electric vehicles or hybrid car models, motorists can be more mindful of their idling habits by switching off their engine if waiting for long periods of time.
"As winter approaches, lessen the need for idling whilst waiting for the windows to defrost by covering your windscreen overnight, or using a can of de-icer and a manual scraper to clear the windscreen.”
Drivers could also face a stiff £5,000 fine for blasting out Christmas tunes and having a bit of a singalong.
And a new law coming in next year could also see drivers handed a £200 fine for scrolling though social media sites like Facebook or changing the music on their phone.
Ministers are bringing in changes to make it illegal for motorists to even touch their phones or devices except in an emergency.
Those who flout it by scrolling, taking selfies or playing games while driving face fines and six points on the licence under the beefed up rules.
Hands-free calling and using a phone for sat-nav will still be allowed.
And hungry Brits will still be able to use their phone to pay for takeaways at drive-thrus and road tolls.
Brits have been able to dodge hefty fines since a High Court ruling in 2019 which said drivers only commit an offence if they use it for "interactive communication" such as making a call or testing.
Ramsey Barreto escaped a fine for filming a pile up in West London in August 2017.
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