Many people forget to keep safety equipment with them and do not remember it until they are in trouble. However, the reflective vest should always remain in your car if, in addition to being safe, you do not want to break the law. This can save you fines, loss of points and also safeguard your life.
Everyone at some point in our lives has heard of a traffic accident that has led many people to death, either from the news or from the mouth of our frightened mother, reminding us of the importance of driving prudently to avoid risky situations that can affect us forever. Many, fearing the irreversible results of some of these road accidents, take precautions to avoid this.
The causes can be several such as the car colliding with another, going off the road or failing in the middle of a highway. However, when it is necessary to get out of the car and you are or are near a road crowded by various vehicles, what precautions should be taken?
Contrary to popular belief, the risk does not end when you leave the vehicle. In fact, it can increase if the provisions stipulated by the Law are not taken to avoid accidents. You may think that there is no reason to get out of the car in the middle of the road, however, waiting for a tow truck because your car failed is just one of the reasons that can lead to that exit that, if not treated carefully, can be the cause of accidents.
How to protect yourself properly?
When you notice that it is difficult for you to see if you do not have your headlights on, it is exactly the moment when you should take into account that other drivers do not have the same visibility either. If the sky is already getting dark or if there are extreme weather conditions like torrential rain that limits people’s field of vision, you absolutely need to make yourself known. Being inside the car you can alert others of your presence through the rear and front lights of your vehicle, however, when you get out of the car it will be you who needs to be illuminated so that everyone realizes your position and can drive without running into you directly.
In Spain, as in many other countries in the world, government entities dedicated to road transport have enacted laws that oblige all citizens to use a reflective vest under the previously mentioned conditions.
This vest can be of different colors, since the only thing that matters is its ability to shine and alert everyone to the presence of a person on the road. You can choose between yellow, orange and red, and as long as the model you have chosen has reflective bands, you will not have a problem. These bands must surround the contour of the body and must be less than or equal to five centimeters wide.
When should it be used?
It is necessary to wear a vest when you are on the road without being inside the car late at night, when there are adverse weather conditions such as rain or fog, or at any time when the vision of drivers is compromised by something external . That is, when you walk, get out of your car or when you travel in open vehicles such as motorcycles or bikes if it is dark or the road is difficult to see.
What does the law say?
You may think that you never get out of your vehicle, that you do not travel by bike or motorcycles and that you do not usually walk the road at night, however, even if this is your current case, you cannot rule out that perhaps, at some point , something forces you to do any of these activities.
Let’s say that you are very sure that it will never happen and you decide to drive your car without having a reflective vest on hand, because you are not going to use it. If no one stops you, then you are probably fine, but you should know that, in Spain, you are not complying with road safety regulations and, if discovered, you will have to face heavy fines and other consequences that will affect your driving through the country.
Every vehicle that is in circulation through Spanish territory must have within it some objects for the safety of the driver and those who share the road with him. In this small kit there must be at least one high visibility reflective vest and two warning triangles. These are the minimum objects that must be in the emergency equipment of your vehicle if you want to comply with the regulations, however, it is recommended to purchase other products that maximize protection and safety.
What are the consequences of not wearing a vest in the car?
If, unfortunately, you have caught the attention of an officer and when asked to show him the emergency equipment, you cannot show the reflective vest, you could have two outcomes.
The first, and least likely, is to pray that the security officer will take pity on you and let you go with a warning due to the infraction. However, non-compliance with the Road Liability Law says a lot about the kind of driver in the car, and many times a warning is not enough to ensure that the person will comply with the rules the next time.
Because of that, the second outcome of the story, which is usually the only one, involves a fine of up to 200 euros in your file and the loss of three of the twelve points that you have on your driving license. The latter may not be of great weight to you, if it is a single error about a clean file, however, if you have committed various infractions no matter how small, you could lose all the points, causing them to remove your license to drive for a specified time or permanently.
To avoid all this, just keep the best reflective vest you can find in your vehicle and find out about the laws to comply with in Spain or the countries where you travel.