A recent article on whatcar.com highlighted some interesting myths about the rules of driving – what is and isn’t illegal, etc. According to a study conducted by ExxonMobil around 70% of drivers in the US admitted to eating while driving, with 83% of drivers drink beverages while in the driver’s seat. These numbers are not too dissimilar in the UK, with 63% of British drivers admitted to eating fast / junk food in the driver’s seat. 55.7% went as far to say that they were more likely to eat unhealthy foods in the car than at home. Most likely due to convenience and the ability to eat and drive, killing two birds with one stone.
You may believe it is illegal to eat behind the wheel, but unless your quick brekkie is ludicrously distracting, it is not illegal. Having said that, whilst eating may not be as bad as looking at your mobile for consuming your concentration, it should still be discouraged because as much focus as possible should be spent on the road ahead and not the sausage roll in your hand. And police are fully within their rights to pull you over if they suspect that too much of your attention is on the food and is causing you to drive dangerously, which could eventually lead to £5000 if you ended up in court. I imagine if you’re eating, let’s say, during a semi-intensive driving lesson in Basingstoke you may get thrown a furrowed brow and a stern word from the instructor. I would definitely not encourage eating a bacon sarnie during your driving test either.