PET-LOVING-loving Britons are risking a hefty fine and voiding their insurance by driving with the animals roaming around in their cars.
Creatures of all shapes and sizes have crammed into owners’ cars, but uncontrolled pets can cause accidents, near misses or emergency stops.
Pets are often considered an extension of the family, so they are frequent passengers on our roads.
But nearly two-thirds of motorists in the UK are unaware that driving with an unbridled pet can result in a fine of up to £5,000 for careless driving.
According to research by Confused.com, more than half of pet drivers don’t realize leaving their pet loose in the car can also void their insurance.
Research shows that one in 10 drivers has been in an accident while traveling with a pet or knows someone who has been involved in an accident.
While one motorist said their dog jumped out of a window while standing at a traffic light – and another was fined for letting their dog climb in front.
Not only dogs, cats are equally dangerous. One driver said their monster was stable in the footrest next to the pedals after coming out of its box.
By letting their pet ride a shotgun or hang their head out of a window, millions of motorists are unwittingly breaking the law and leaving themselves with fines, points, and lapses in insurance.
Rule 57 of the Highway Code states: “When in a vehicle, ensure that dogs or other animals are restrained appropriately so that they cannot distract you while driving or injure you. or themselves, if you stop quickly.
“Wearing seat belts, pet racks, dog cages, or dog guardians are all ways to restrain animals in cars.”
TOP TIPS FOR DRIVING WITH YOUR PET
- The Highway Code recommends the use of “seat belts, pet carriers, dog cages or dog guards” to restrain animals in vehicles
- Experts believe that using a cage or crate in a trunk is the safest way to transport your pet
- Do not feed your pet within two hours of starting a long car trip to avoid motion sickness
- Pack favorite toys or blankets to give your pet a sense of belonging
- Use sunshades on windows when it’s hot or sunny, and never leave pets in a hot car.
- Always carry a large water bottle (minimum 5 liters) in case your pet overheats and needs to be cooled down quickly in an emergency.
- Do not allow your pet to ride with its head facing out the window, as it can be dangerous and may cause injury.
(Source: Animal Company)
And while disobeying the Highway Code is not a direct penalty, motorists can be pulled over by police and fined up to £1,000 for driving without proper control if their pet causes they lose focus.
That can lead to failure to drive with care and attention (careless driving), leading to a maximum fine of £5,000 and nine penalty points if the case goes to court.
In severe cases, the problem can lead to a driving ban and a mandatory re-inspection.
To make matters worse, your insurance company is likely to refuse to pay in the event of an accident, leaving you with a major damage repair bill.
Amanda Stretton, driving editor at Confused.com, said: “Many motorists will be joined by four-legged companions as they embark on trips across the UK.
“But drivers must properly lock their dogs, or else
can receive fines of up to £5,000.
“Driving with an unrestrained pet can also void your car insurance, which means you have to pay for repairs yourself in the event of a claim.”
We previously revealed the cheap price £7 items that can save you a heavy fine when driving with your pet.
Ford has released a dog crate fitted to their brand new Ford Focus estate.
And Tesla Introduces “Dog Mode” to Their Electric Vehicle Fleetallowing pet owners to safely leave furry friends locked in their engines.
https://www.thesun.ie/motors/1068197/driving-car-pet-risk-fine/ Driving with your pet in the car could land you a £5,000 fine and void your insurance