This is why you should NEVER splash pedestrians as weather warnings are issued for potential flooding in Derbyshire

Storm Bronagh battered the county yesterday with more severe weather warnings in place for rain over the weekend.

Friday, 21st September 2018, 1:59 pm
Updated Friday, 21st September 2018, 2:07 pm

Drivers were spotted trying to navigate flood water while huge puddles remain on many roads.

But, is it illegal to splash a pedestrian with your car while going through a puddle, even by accident?

It seems, the answer is yes.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Traffic negotiating a flood on the main road through Baslow

Drivers could be fined up to £5,000 for splashing puddles over pedestrians with their cars. Even though it is highly unlikely such a huge fine would be doled out for such an offence, it is possible for the punishment to be hnaded down in extreme cases.

This is because, under British law, it is illegal to splash a pedestrian with water from the road while your driving your car, even if it’s accidental. You could also be handed a public order offence is you deliberately drive through the puddle to target a pedestrian. Under section three of the Road Traffic Act 1988, it is an offence to drive “without reasonable consideration for other persons”, and this includes any instance of “driving through a puddle causing pedestrians to be splashed”. Despite the law, it’s more likely you will get a £100 fixed penalty notice and three penalty points if caught.

However, should motorists be deemed to be driving in a manner that “amounts to a clear act of incompetence, selfishness, impatience, and aggressiveness” then the maximum punishment of a £5,000 fine could be levelled. I

f drivers fail to pay the £100 fixed penalty or refuse the penalty notice they could also face the maximum £5,000 fine if the case is taken to court.

RAC road safety spokesman Pete Williams said: “Anyone unfortunate enough to have suffered a drenching by an inconsiderate motorist splashing them when driving through a puddle would probably welcome a sizeable financial penalty for the driver.

“Since 2013 careless driving can be dealt with by a Fixed Penalty Notice with a £100 fine and three penalty points.

“This is a take it or leave it offer for the motorist if they accept that they have committed the offence.

“If, however, they refuse then they will face a magistrate who could impose a fine up to £5,000, although the maximum is very unlikely.

“In such a case the fine would be appropriate to the level of distress and inconvenience caused and would hopefully send a clear message that inconsiderate and potentially aggressive driving is simply not acceptable.

“Drivers have a duty to show respect and care for their fellow road users and pedestrians.”