Honk goodbye to the goodbye honk

Published: 13 March 2018

Get that dog a seat belt – and a seat

The fines dished out for common moves by motorists

Get that dog a seat belt – and a seat
Image © 2018 RACQ

You might think tooting the horn is a nice friendly way to say goodbye to your mates. But what you may not realise is that makes you a law-flouting criminal, and you could actually be honking goodbye to $76.

The fines were given to 52 Queenslanders in the 12 months to October 2017 for improper use of their horn, which encompasses anything other than using the car horn to "warn" other drivers of hazards, including the friendly toot or the frustrated blast.

It’s a law that many motorists have no beeping idea about – and it’s not the only one, as Queensland drivers have been warned by their peak motoring body, the RACQ.

More than 400 drivers across the state were fined in the 12 months to October 2017 for having their arm or leg outside their car window, each slugged $126.15.

And 170 people were fined a hefty $294.35 for having an animal, usually a dog, sitting on their lap.

RACQ spokesperson Lauren Ritchie said drivers were often mindful of major road rules such as not speeding, but could be caught out by lesser-known laws.

"Ignorance of road rules isn't a valid excuse so we urge everyone to refresh their knowledge, whether they're a cyclist, a pedestrian, a driver or a passenger," she said.

Indeed 113 pedestrians fined for stepping in front of traffic outside a designated crossing, and 66 people were fined $126.15 for riding a bike without brakes or a bell.

It’s not clear whether ringing your bike bell as a farewell is also illegal – but you might want to stick with a “Seeya”, just to be safe.

with AAP
© 2018 AAP