Did you know you could end up being fined if you vape while driving? That’s the message issued by senior police officers recently. You may wonder why you could be fined for using an electronic cigarette while driving. It’s not illegal, as has been pointed out.
However, it is not illegal to eat or drink while driving either. Yet you could still be fined for doing that if police officers see you and deem you were distracted or driving dangerously.
What is the major issue here?
There are several key differences between vaping and smoking, namely that vaping has been proven to be far better for your health than smoking cigarettes. However, many people will have noticed e-cigs produce far more vapour than cigarettes do. It is this vapour that appears to be the main concern here.
The excessive amount of vapour emitted by an e-cigarette could obscure a driver’s vision. Even if this only happens for a second or so, it is enough to potentially cause an accident.
Being distracted by anything could result in a fine, or worse
Sergeant John Davis of Surrey Police pointed out someone could be found guilty of an offence if they are distracted in any way while at the wheel. Vaping is just one of the ways this could happen. Sergeant Davis confirmed that eating or smoking might also be deemed distracting. He also highlighted the unfortunately regular occurrence of finding mobile phone use is a key factor in some serious and fatal accidents.
Visual disruption is a key factor behind the warning
The message from the police is clear – many people may not think vaping behind the wheel is dangerous. However, it can be just that. While it isn’t illegal to do this, you could be found guilty of an offence if you are seen vaping and the clouds of vapour are deemed to be obstructing your vision.
The outcome of this could be points on your licence (between three and nine of them), a fine of up to £2,500, and possibly even being disqualified from driving altogether. None of that equates with the possibility of causing an accident, possibly even a serious or fatal one. So, perhaps we should refrain from vaping while at the wheel, just in case it did cause a serious crash.
Do you agree with this warning? Do you vape while driving? Let us know in the comments below.