Bank holiday DIY warning as drivers face hefty fines for illegally transporting materials

DIY-ers could end up with a fine and points on their licence this bank holiday weekend if they'[re not clear on the rules
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Drivers in England have been issued a stern warning ahead of the bank holiday weekend: incorrect transportation of DIY materials could result in hefty fines. Swansway Motor Group has cautioned that failure to adhere to vehicle loading regulations could lead to a fine and points on one's licence during the upcoming three-day break.

With many individuals planning to tackle long-overdue DIY projects over the extended weekend, it's crucial to be aware of the legalities surrounding the carriage of such items in vehicles. The driving experts have advised: "It's quite possible that at some point drivers will need to transport materials that are too big to fit in their vehicle, this is not something to worry over as long as common sense is applied and the rules of the road are followed."

The law permits driving with an open boot to accommodate oversized items, but there are strict limitations: "It is not illegal to drive with your car boot open when transporting something that doesn't quite fit in your vehicle, however, drivers must ensure that the item they are carrying protrudes no more than three feet to the rear of the outline of the car, or more than six inches to the side of the vehicle."

Visibility of a vehicle's lights and registration plate is mandatory; non-compliance can attract a fine of up to £100 and three penalty points. Moreover, securing the load properly is essential to prevent road obstructions or damage to other vehicles, as unsecured loads can shift or fall out.

Experts have warned: "Drivers should ensure that they have a clear line of version when driving, they can achieve this by not loading up their vehicle higher than the line of the back seats. There are no penalties if visibility out of the back window is blocked, providing that a vehicle has two functional wing mirrors, however, it's important to consider the impact this will have on driving.", reports Birmingham Live.

They also caution: "One area drivers must proceed with caution, is ensuring that they don't overload their car when loading it up with DIY supplies. Many building materials are quite weighty, which can add unnecessary strain on a vehicle. A heavy load can impact driving performance in several ways, such as increasing stopping speed or decreasing responsiveness, making it harder to control."

Furthermore, they advise: "Overloading your vehicle means exceeding the Maximum Authorised Mass (MAM) or Maximum Permitted Weight (MPW) whether this is through what's on or in the car, including driver and passengers. The MAM differs for each vehicle and can be found on the 'VIN plate' in a handbook or under the bonnet."

And they highlight: "It can lead to a fixed penalty between £100 to £300 depending on how overloaded the vehicle is, e.g. £100 if the vehicle is less than 10% overloaded, £200 if the vehicle is between 10% -14% overloaded and £300 if the vehicle is over 15%."

"Things really start to escalate when the car is over 30% overloaded, you could receive a court summons for dangerous driving under the Road Traffic Act 1988."

They suggested: "Considering the use of a roof rack to transport DIY materials could be one way around fitting bulky items in a car. All items should be attached securely, at the front you should ensure its secure to stop any airflow from lifting the item up, whilst at the back, securing an item will stop it from sliding forward when braking."

"Like within the vehicle, any items on the roof must not obstruct the driver's vision, and it cannot overhang more than 50cm to the rear or side of the vehicle and no more than 15cm over the front of the car."