- A complete immobilisation of your vehicle through mechanical failure or a crash
- A serious medical emergency
- Being told to stop by the police
- On smart motorways (where permitted)
Nonetheless, people frequently risk their lives by parking on the hard shoulder for trivial reasons, including: reading maps, making mobile phone calls and going to the toilet. Even if your car has a minor fault that may become serious, it is still safest to leave the motorway at the next exit. If caught stopping on the hard shoulder without justifiable reason, you can receive an on the spot fine of £50 – particularly dangerous use could involve points on your licence.
To stop on the hard shoulder:
- Signal and pull onto the hard shoulder, as far over as possible, turning your wheels away from passing traffic. Try to park near an emergency phone if possible
- Turn on your hazard warning lights
- You and your passengers should leave the vehicle via the left passenger doors and wait on the verge until help arrives
Trying to stay on top of all things road law? Nationwide Vehicle Contracts produce a range of blogs on UK Road Law, from Mobiles Phones to Parking.
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