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Prime Mover Magazine

Teletrac Navman reveals the obscure road laws that might catch truck drivers unaware

Did you know that beeping your horn for any reason other than alerting road users to danger is illegal – or that having dirt on your registration plates could violate road law and land you a fine and a loss of three demerit points? Teletrac Navman has revealed the obscure road laws that drivers might not be aware of in a new infographic.

Here’s how these laws might impact you down the road:

Maintaining the speed limit and keeping left

Everyone knows the risks of driving over the speed limit – but driving under it is just as illegal, and can lead to a large fine and 4 demerit points for obstructing the path of other vehicles.

The ’10 per cent’ speed myth has also been effectively busted by Teletrac Navman, as driving more than 10 kilometres over the speed limit carries significant fines for truck drivers because of the extreme risks they present to others on the road.

Another important road rule for all truck drivers is to keep left at all times – this clears the way for drivers to overtake when travelling with heavier or more unwieldy loads. Fines and two demerit points await drivers who don’t follow this rule.

Driving while distracted

Truck drivers have big responsibilities, and you don’t need distractions that take your eyes off the road while you work. Eating or drinking while driving causes lapses in concentration that could be deadly – even looking away from the road for a few seconds can lead to an accident. Distracted drivers can be slapped with a fine and three demerit points for risking their safety and putting other road users in danger. It’s essential to plan for rest breaks on long haul trips so you can take a break and recover. This can also prevent the onset of fatigue and encourage safer driving habits.

Harsher penalties apply for those drivers using a phone on the road without attaching it to a stand – even for navigational purposes. An in-cabin device that can guide your journey and provide audio and visual alerts when on the road is a better option – so there’s no reason to need your phone while on the road. If caught handling a phone at all, you can score a major fine and up to 5 demerit points depending on your local state law.

Correct use of headlights

While it might seem like common courtesy to warn other drivers of approaching police cars or cameras ahead, this practice is actually illegal because it could inadvertently dazzle other road users. Flashing and dipping your lights could earn you a small fine and attract a loss of 1 demerit point.

Not using your headlights at all also carries heavy penalties during night hours, particularly on roads with poor illumination, carrying a fine and a loss of two demerit points.

While these laws may not be well known, they’re essential to ensure everyone has a safe journey on our roads, and will help you, or your drivers, avoid any unexpected incidents or fines in the future.

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