UK Smokers Set to Ignore Changes to Highway Code

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

OK, so the UK hasn't banned smoking in cars– with or without kids in situ. But changes to the Highway Code– the rules and regulations governing all road users– have empowered police to ticket puffing motorists for "not allowing proper control of a car" (allowing?). Although police pedants have previously cited UK drivers for drinking from a water bottle in slow-moving traffic and other petty distractions, a survey from the esure auto insurance company reveals that 45 percent of smoking motorists have a simple response to the new prohibition: piss off. esure surveyed a thousand UK motorists to discover than a little less than half would ignore the rule change entirely. To ensure esure's survey adopted the correct line on the matter, their research company winkled-out some "worrying" statistics: a "massive" 80 per cent of smoking motorists admit to taking their hands off the wheel to fire-up a fag; 75 per cent of them think smoking whilst driving on a motorway is acceptable and poses no risks; 46 per cent admit to dropping their cigarette in the car (26 per cent said they took their eyes off the road to retrieve it); and 45 per cent admit to throwing fag ends out the window. esure's Head of Risk and Underwriting sounded the appropriate note: "At esure, driver safety is our top priority and so the risky habits carried out by some smokers are a cause for concern. We advise drivers to always pay the road their full attention." That's it then. Carry on.

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

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4 of 6 comments
  • Confused1096 Confused1096 on Oct 16, 2007

    Brings to mind the bumper sticker: "Warning: Bothering me about my smoking may be hazardous to your health".

  • Quasimondo Quasimondo on Oct 16, 2007

    This is insane. What's next? Citations for failing to pull over to change a radio station? Will it be unsafe if you had only one hand on the steering wheel, while the other hand rested on the gearshift?

  • Ref Ref on Oct 17, 2007

    I'd guess the next thing they forbid is having little children on the back seat - as everyone knows, those guys tend to throw their toys around. I mean, you'd have to take your eyes of the road to retrieve it. Oh brave new world with such laws in it!

  • Ricky Spanish Ricky Spanish on Oct 17, 2007

    So . . . . lets charge smokers higher car insurance premiums While we're at it, lets charge them higher health insurance premiums as well (though I guess this is a non-issue in most of the civilized world where they have universal health care)