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Car insurance agreements could be scrapped by insurance firms if your bike is not loaded safely or is blocking a number plate. Experts at MoneyShake warn road users could be “pulled over by police” and issued heavy penalties.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, CEO Eben Lovatt warned fines could rise up to £1,000 if motorists’ number plate is not visible on the road,
He urged road users to invest in a “lighting board” for their vehicles which will allow road users to travel safely at all times.
Mr Lovatt said: “Bike sales surged in lockdown, so we can expect more and more cyclists to take advantage of the hot weather.
But if you are considering loading your bike or your family’s bikes onto the back of your car, make sure it doesn’t cover your licence plate – or you risk being pulled over by police and a £1,000 fine.
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“Those with rear-mounted bike racks should invest in a lighting board for their car.
“This allows you to travel safely with your bike, without illegally obscuring your licence plate and lights.”
According to GOV.UK drivers could be fined £1,000 and your car could fail its MOT test if motorists drive with an incorrectly displayed number plate.
It is illegal for your number plates to be covered as this could stop speed cameras from picking up your registration details if you break the law.
Covering your brake lights is also considered to be a major health risk and could see motorists issued charges for dangerous driving.
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This could see fines rise to a massive £5,000 with up to nine penalty points also likely to be issued.
In some extreme cases, motorists could also find they face a temporary driving ban in a major blow for many.
Halfords says a lighting board displays your rear lights, reflectors and your number plate which are legally required to be on display at all times.
The tool can be purchased for just over £20 and will provide a simple fix for road users to avoid heavy charges.
Halfords have warned road users that securing the right type of bike rack is key to avoiding heavy penalties.
They say that some rear-mounted bike racks “may cover your lights and number plate” which will force drivers to purchase a lighting board.
However, they say road users could also invest in a roof-mounted bike rack where your number plate and lights are likely to still be visible.
Tow bar bike racks come with a lighting board attached although drivers may need an extra number plate in some cases.
In another blow for road users, experts at CarParts4Less have previously warned that bike racks could be considered a vehicle modification.
Any updates to a vehicle could invalidate an agreement as firms argue the specification of the model they agreed to insure has changed.
Modifications can dramatically increase your premiums as your car would need to be reassessed by firms.
Vehicle upgrades are usually classified as performance changes or cosmetic updates that could make your car more attractive to thieves.
However, a spokesperson for the firm urged drivers to contact their insurers before setting off on any road trips to ensure their cover will not be affected by installing the simple rack.
A spokesperson said: “Before preparing for a staycation, it’s common to install roof or bike racks so everything that’s needed for the holiday can be packed.
“However, some drivers may be unaware that these additions can be counted as modifications by some insurers and this could require a change in your policy.
“Before installing, contact your insurer to let them know of your plans.”
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