The first official rules of the Road were published in the UK in 1931 and the publication was called The Highway Code, which means that the UK drivers ‘manual’ (today) in 2008 is 77 years old.
When the original Highway Code was sold there were 2.3 million vehicles in the UK that’s compared to at least 31.1 million cars in the UK and about 4.1 million commercial vehicles, these figures are correct up until 2007. (These figures are taken from research carried out by the Society of Motor Manufacturers).
The Highway Code has never left the bestsellers list since records began. This is thanks to its readership of several hundred thousand each year. Before the Highway Code was first introduced 7,000 people were killed in road accidents, this has been halved largely as a result of the Highway Code, greater public awareness and the advances in technology.
When it first came out the Highway Code cost one old penny and it contained 18 pages of advice, this is compared to the latest edition that has 135 pages filled with how to use the road and obey the instructions, which are given via signs or road markings.The original edition informed the public and encouraged road users to be careful and considerate towards others, putting safety first. Today’s Highway Code remains true to its original version but it goes into greater depth on the rules of the road and how motorists and pedestrians should use the public highway.
In today’s Code there are rules for pedestrians, users of powered wheelchairs and mobility scooters, cyclists and motorcyclists. Firstly we are going to focus on some of the rules for drivers and motorcyclists.
Disclaimer: The information in the article is for general purpose information only and should not be constituted as legal advice. This article has been produced by a third party and Jardine Motors does not take any responsibility for the completeness, accuracy, or reliability with respect to the website or the information provided. Article last updated March 2016.