UK drivers are being warned they could face a £2,500 fine and three penalty points on their licence for transporting a Christmas tree in their car this festive season.

More than a quarter of us will begin decorating our homes for Christmas next week according to one survey, with Christmas trees the key to getting into the Christmas spirit for many of us.

However, Julie Daniels from the car insurance team at Comparethemarket has warned drivers to make sure they aren’t putting themselves at risk of receiving of a hefty fine when collecting their tree this year.

Ms Daniels said: “Even though there aren't any laws specifically related to transporting a Christmas tree, drivers could still face fines or penalty points when driving with a tree on, or in their vehicle.

Irvine Times:

“Regulation 100 of the Road Vehicles Regulations 1986 requires any load to be suitably secured so that it is not at risk of falling off or being blown off the vehicle - and if police or even other witnesses believe a tree is unsecure or unsafe, drivers could face three penalty points or a fine of up to £2,500.

“In addition, Regulation 30 clearly states that drivers need to have a full view of the road ahead, so if the tree obscures this or causes damage that could affect the driver’s vision of the road, they could be at risk of receiving a £1000 fine or three penalty points.

“Even drivers who are not transporting a tree need to be aware that they could be penalised, because if a road user witnesses a Christmas tree cause an incident, and does not stop or report it, they face risking an unlimited fine or up to 10 penalty points.”

These are her top tips for driving safely with your Christmas tree this festive season:

  • Take a measurement of the tree to ensure it’ll fit securely in your vehicle, without interfering with the steering wheel, gears, indicators, mirrors or front and back windscreen.
  • If you need to use a roof rack, tie the tree down tightly with ropes or bungee cords, ensuring the stump is facing the front of the car. It’s important none of the branches overhang and obstructs your view.
  • Finally, remember to drive a little slower and take extra caution when braking to avoid dislodging the tree and to prevent injuries or damage.