Planning A Summer Road Trip In Europe? Make Sure You Know The Law

With the sunshine coming out and a number of bank holiday weekends to get us all in the mood for the warmer weather and longer days to come, you might be considering a road trip to Europe this summer.

If you’re taking your own car, you’ll no doubt be planning to book it in for car servicing in Hillingdon before your journey, but you should also make time to familiarise yourself with the driving laws in any European countries you’ll be visiting.

The RAC recently highlighted the introduction of the EU Cross-Border Enforcement Directive, which essentially makes it easier for drivers who commit offences overseas to be prosecuted. Police forces and other enforcement authorities share information about vehicles involved in traffic offences, such as speeding, using a mobile phone while at the wheel, and drink-driving.

So far, 23 of the EU’s 28 member states have signed up to the directive, with the UK, Ireland and Denmark rolling it out from 6th May this year.

For the vast majority of drivers, it will make very little difference in practice, but it does mean you’re more likely to receive a fine if you break any driving laws on the continent.

Simon Williams, RAC spokesman, commented: “We strongly recommend that every motorist travelling to Europe by car familiarise themselves with the local rules of the road as it is ultimately their responsibility to do so.”

You should also make sure you know what you’re required to have in your car when driving on the continent. The AA has produced a handy guide to help drivers get ready for a road trip, which points out that carrying things like a warning triangle, reflective vest and first aid kit is compulsory in countries such as Austria and Croatia.

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