· Any special requirements for driving in England?
· What should I know about Parking in England?
· How much does fuel cost in England?
· What is the speed limit on English roads?
· What is the conversion for kph to mph?
· What is the alcohol limit in England?
· Are there any Toll roads in England?
· What are the seat belt regulations in England?
· What is the minimum age for driving in England?
· Can I use my domestic licence in England?
· What documents may I need to carry?
· What terms may I find useful when driving in England?
· What do I do in the case of an accident?
· What number do I call for the emergency services in England?
· To check driving conditions, telephone…
In England motorists drive on the left and overtake on the right. Most Roads in England are actually of very good quality, there is an excellent motorway system and the surfaces are well maintained in most areas. British roads are actually the safest in the EU even though they can be very busy at peak times. Small country lanes are extremely narrow, with large hedgerows. Don’t, however, shrink from driving such roads, as they can be avenues to beautiful scenery. When driving on these roads you must be constantly prepared to bring your vehicle to a crawl and negotiate some sort of compromise with the oncoming traffic. Generally, priority is given to vehicles on the right. Where priority is the prime control, vehicles entering priority roads are under no obligation to stop unless yielding to a vehicle on the priority road. This may be a surprise to foreign drivers at first, as vehicles seem to come flying out of side roads and partially onto the priority road with little thought of stopping; but really they do stop. Vehicles on a roundabout have priority so vehicles entering a roundabout must yield. Traffic coming from the right hand side has precedence at roundabouts.
Yellow lines indicate parking restrictions. Nearby there will be a sign which details the exact parking restrictions, but typically a double yellow line means no parking at any time, a single yellow line means no parking from 8am to 6 30pm Monday to Saturday, and a broken yellow line means that there are few restrictions. You should check the nearest sign for details of these. Red lines mean that you cannot park or stop at any time on the side of the road that they are painted on. They are usually placed on busy commuter roads in big cities. Pay-and-display machines are very common throughout Britain as well as parking meters. In pay and display machines you need to put in the money for the required amount of time, collect a small ticket and display it CLEARLY on your dashboard. If there are parking meters, just park beside the one allocated for your parking space and then put in money for the time allocation that you require. The tariff and time limit are shown on the machine. Cars illegally parked or causing obstructions can be fined or towed away. Never park on white zigzag lines, found next to school entrances and at zebra crossings.
Petrol prices in Britain are a very emotive issue at the moment because they have risen so quickly over the past number of years. Current fuel prices vary between 75 and 85p per litre (depending on the area) diesel being only a few pence cheaper.
Speed limit on Motorway: 112kph/70mph
Speed limit in Towns: 48kph/30mph
Speed limit on Major roads: 65kph/40mph
Speed limit in residential areas: 35kph/20mph
Round signs indicate speed limits with the limit amount circled by a red band. When the speed limit has stopped then there is a black line at an angle crossing over the speed limit indicated.
1 mile=1.6 km 1 U.S.
Currently the blood-alcohol level is at 35mg/100ml. Recently, there have been discussions on reducing this limit so you may need to check again before you depart – just to be sure.
Unlike most European countries there are no toll roads in Britain. All tolls in Britain are used to cross bridges such as the Humber Bridge in Hull or the Severn Bridge in Bristol. Costs on toll bridges depend on what type of vehicle that you are driving. Charges start from about £2.00 pounds to £2.50 for a car this goes up to £14.00 pounds for a truck. The prices are one-way.
In the UK seat belts are compulsory in the front and the rear if fitted.
The minimum driving age in England is 17.
For driving in Britain you won’t need an international driving licence if your driving licence is a EU style (pink) one and/or includes a clear description in English. If your licence isn’t in English, it may be useful to have a translation in the unlikely event that the police stop you. You are entitled to drive for a year in Britain without getting a British licence.
You are legally required to carry your driving licence , insurance papers and registration papers (proof of ownership) with you at all times. If you have a hire car you will need to carry all the necessary documents with you also. If you fail to produce these documents the police may ask you to present them at a police station within a specified number of days.
If you are an American visitor you may find some differences in the language used in relation to driving. Here are some of the main words that you may find difficulty with:
Petrol = Gasoline
Petrol station = Gas station or garage (for buying fuel)
Number plate = License plate
Gallon = About 1.2 US gallons
Fuel consumption = Gas mileage
Lorry = Truck
Saloon = Sedan
Car park = Parking lot or garage (for parking)
Bonnet = Hood
Manual gearbox = Stick shift
Handbrake = Parking brake
Boot = Trunk
Windscreen = Windshield
Tyre = Tire
Kerb = Curb
Pavement = Sidewalk
Dual carriageway = Divided highway
Motorway = Freeway
Car hire = Car rental
You will need to call one of the following: Police and Ambulance, tel. 999.depending on the severity of the accident they should be called straight away. If there is any damage to the car or to a passenger of yours or another car then calling the police is essential. You will need to take contact details and the registration number of all witnesses to the accident. If have a camera make sure you take photographs from all angles before any vehicles is moved. You may need to call the Royal Automobile Club (RAC), FIA member, tel. 0181 686 0088, 8710 or the Automobile Association (AA), tel. 01256 20123 if you need to get your car repaired.
Police/Fire/Ambulance Service – 999
For hourly U.K traffic reports call the British Automobile Association on 01336 401 110.