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New Road Laws and MOT Changes 2019

03 January 2019

As we enter each new year, new technologic advancements take place within our modern cars. As a result, the Department for Transport is required to make any necessary changes to the highway code and MOT regulations.

MOT Rule Changes

If your MOT fell before May 2018, you may not be aware of the new MOT rules that were introduced last year. New categories were added to the MOT Test, these include the following:

You Will Fail Your MOT If Your Car Falls Into These Categories

·         Dangerous – Direct of immediate risk to road safety or the environment.

·         Major – Could affect the vehicle’s safety and put other road users at risk, or affect the environment

You Will Pass Your MOT If Your Car Falls Into These Categories

·         Minor – No significant effect on safety, but should be repaired as soon as possible

·         Advisory – Could become more serious in the future

·         Pass – Meets the current minimum legal standards

New MOT Checks

Alongside the new MOT Categories, drivers must also be aware that there are new MOT Checks in place:

·         Under-inflated tyres

·         Contaminated brake fluid

·         Reversing lights (for vehicles made since September 2009)

·         Brake pad warning lights/ missing break discs

·         Daytime running lights (for vehicles produced since March 2018)


New Road Laws 2019

Overtaking Cyclists

Road-users could now be faced with a £100 fine if they are caught overtaking cyclists with less than 1.5m (4.9ft) distance. The highway code states that drivers should leave at least 1.5m between the car and a cyclist, which is approximately the width of a standard car door.

Learner Drivers Can Now Take To The Motorways

Learner drivers were once only allowed to star motorway driving after passing their driving test. However, learners can now opt to take to the motorway as a part of their driving lessons. All unqualified drivers must be accompanied by an instructor with dual controls.

Smart Motorway Fines

Motorists who are caught driving on lanes with a red “X” on the automated signs above can now face a fine of £100 and three points on their licence. These lanes are closed when an accident or blockage is ahead and are often used to avoid an accident and ease congestion.

Graduated Driving Licences

The government are pilot testing graduated driving licenses in Northern Ireland this year. The graduated license applies to new drivers who have been driving for less than two years. It puts in place stricter penalties and additional rules and regulations for new drivers.

It’s believed that the licences will focus on:

·         Curfews

·         Passenger Limits

·         Separate Lower Speed Limits

·         Limits on Engine Sizes

·         Mandatory P Plates

·         Lower Alcohol limits