Sounding the horn on rules of the road

IT IS a common occurrence – sounding the horn in a motor vehicle when you arrive at or leave someone’s house.

Did you ever stop to think about whether or not you may be breaking the law by engaging in this (seemingly) socially accepted practice?

Queensland’s road rules are set out in the Transport Operations (Road Use Management – Road Rules) Regulation 2009 (“TORUM”) and there are rules relating to the use of the horn.

Specifically, rule 224 states a driver “must not use, or allow to be used, a horn” unless:

  • The driver is warning other road users or animals of the approach or position of the vehicle; or
  • The horn is being used as part of an anti-theft device, or an alcohol ignition interlock, fitted to the vehicle.

Rule 291 deals with unnecessary noise and states in sub-rule three that a driver or passenger must not sound the horn except where allowed under rule 224.

Both rules attract a maximum penalty of 20 penalty units if you breach the rule (currently that amount is $2,669).

So whether you are the driver or passenger of the vehicle, if you sound the horn otherwise than in compliance with rule 224 you risk a hefty fine.

The TORUM contains many road rules – at 406 pages that is hardly surprising. You may be surprised by the number of rules you don’t know. The TORUM is readily accessible online.

Until next week – Keep it Legal!

Katie Caldow

* The legal information in this article is of a general nature only and not intended to be legal advice to rely upon.

Walker PenderSounding the horn on rules of the road