97. In Malta, traffic must keep to the left-hand side of
98. All vehicles on the road must be duly licensed and
insured at least against third-party risks and any person driving a motor
vehicle must be in possession of a current driving licence valid for the type of
vehicle you wish to drive.
99. Your driving licence must be signed (in ink).
100. Ensure that your vehicle is in a good state of
repair and roadworthy in all respects and you are in receipt of a V. R. T.
certificate if applicable. Give particular attention to the brakes, the steering
mechanism, the tyres and the lights. Know your vehicle and its limitations.
Have it regularly serviced and inspected.
101. Before hiring out or lending a vehicle, ensure that
the vehicle is in a perfectly safe condition and that the person taking it on
charge is in possession of a valid driving license for Malta, as well as being
covered by an adequate insurance policy and fully understands and is capable of
operating the controls of the particular vehicle.
102. An instructor taking a learner driver for a driving
lesson must ensure that during the lesson the vehicle is provided with the
regulation L-plates securely in place, and that the learner only drives the
vehicle in the place and within the times specified in the permit issued in his
103. A person who has passed a driving test and obtained
a driving licence should use special caution and circumspection and avoid heavy
traffic for the first few months. A driving licence gives the qualification but
not the skill. This comes with the right kind of experience but a driver should
always be careful to guard against over-confidence.
104. Excessive speed increases both the possibility and
the severity of accidents. Overspeeding and impatience are a sign of poor
driving and jeopardise the safety of innocent persons. In the short distances
normally travelled in Malta, the difference in journey time between a trip at
breakneck speed and a safe and comfortable drive is to be counted in minutes.
105 The condition of your vehicle, of any trailer it is
drawing and of any load, and the number of passengers and the way in which they
are carried, are such that they do not endanger yourself or others. In
particular, only two persons should occupy the front seats of vehicles of up to
five persons capacity. It is highly recommended that children under 12 years
should not ride in front seats unless unavoidable, nor should persons carrying
children on their lap.
106 Use your vehicle in such a way as to cause the least
possible inconvenience to others. Ensure that your engine works efficiently and
silently and does not drip oils or emit noxious exhaust fumes and that your
silencer is effective. In residential areas, sound your horn as sparingly as
possible. In areas when the sounding of horns is prohibited at all times, and in
all inhabited areas between 11.00 p.m. and 6.00 a.m., you may only sound the
horn in a real emergency.
Vehicles towing and loading
107. No driver shall tow any other vehicle unless the tow
rope or chain be so adjusted that the distance separating the nearest points of
the motor vehicles shall not exceed 4.5 metres and steps shall be taken to
render the tow rope or chain easily distinguishable by other users of the road
by the attachment of a white rag.
108. As a driver
you MUST NOT tow more than your licence permits you to.
you MUST NOT overload your vehicle or trailer.
Check the weights shown in your car's handbook.
you MUST secure your load and it MUST NOT stick out in such
a manner as to cause a hazard.
when towing a caravan or trailer, the driver is to ensure that the towing
vehicle's registration number is displayed at the rear of the caravan or
make sure the weight is evenly distributed in your caravan or on your
trailer to prevent the possibility of swerving or snaking and going out of
control. If this does happen, reduce speed gently to regain control.
it is highly recommended that an 'On Tow' sign is affixed and clearly
visible at the rear of the towed vehicle.
take all the necessary precautions, such as lights and cautious driving,
when towing another vehicle afte dark.
109. Ensure your tyres are suited for the type of vehicle
you are driving, regarding size and speed rating.
110. Note that recut tyres are not permitted on passenger
vehicles below eight passenger seats and any vehicle below 2450kgs unladen
111. Vehicles fitted with tyres marked with a maximum
speed rating, must not exceed the speed so marked.
112. Tyres should be properly inflated. The tread pattern
depth minimum of 1.6mm applies for a passenger carrying vehicle with not more
than eight passenger seats and goods or dual purpose vehicles not exceeding
3500kg G. V. W. and 1.0mm tread pattern depth minimum applies for passenger
carrying vehicles with more than eight passenger seats and goods vehicles over
113. Tyres should not have bulges, cuts, or internal
repairs to the carcass.
114. It is not recommended to mix tyres of a different
type or structure from another on the same axle.
115. A three or four wheeled vehicle fitted with single
wheels must not have:
a cross-ply or bias-belted tyre fitted on rear axle and radial-ply tyre
fitted on front axle.
a cross-ply or bias-belted tyre fitted on front axle and a radial-ply
tyre fitted on rear axle.
116. Any tyre 'type' mix between different axles is
acceptable for vehicles that have
two axle and twin wheels on the rear axle.
three axles, one steering and one driving.
117. This does not apply to vehicles with an axle fitted
with 'super single' tyres having a road contact area at least 300mm wide.
118. Ensure all windows and windscreen surfaces should be
clean and free of any obstructions. Licences, notices, permits, etc., are only
allowed along the upper or lower edge on the left-hand side of the windscreen.
Factory standard wipers or approved replacements should be fully functional and
installed. Only factory standard tinted glass is allowed. Spray-on tints for
glass are prohibited, as are curtains (or any similar fitment) used against the
rear windscreen at night. Any alterations or other attachments to the windscreen
must be authorised by the Licensing and Testing Department on request.
Make sure your windscreen is completely clear
119. Ensure your vehicle is fitted with the appropriate
number of mirrors to enable you to see traffic behind you. Passenger cars
manufactured after 1978 should at least have an internal and driver's side
external mirror. However, all vehicles should have preferably an external mirror
on either side so adjusted as to enable the driver to get good views on both
sides and the rear of the vehicle.
120. Ensure your horn is in working order. No pneumatic
(air) horns of any description are allowed.
121. Ensure your speedometer is in working order.
122. Ensure your exhaust system is efficient and its
noise is within the acceptable limits.
123. Only factory standard bumpers are allowed. If
removed, there should be no projecting surfaces (e.g. brackets or other parts)
or cutting surfaces or edges. Even if factory options, no extra bars of any
section or in any shape are allowed on any part of the vehicle. In accidental
damage to the bodywork, projecting and pointed metal surfaces and edges should
be rectified as soon as possible so as not to constitute danger to pedestrians.
Mobile crane jibs should not project forward over 1.5 metres if their tip is
less than 3 metres above ground level.
124. The load on your vehicle preferably should be is so
secured that neither danger nor nuisance is caused by its falling or shifting or
being blown off, and the load height should not endanger the stability of the
125. Loads should preferably not project to the front.
They should not project to the rear by more than 1/5 of
the length of the vehicle and should not reach the ground. It
is suggested that 50 cm square red or yellow boards with total or partially
reflective surfaces should be fixed at the tips of any load. Loads should not
project sideways. They also must in no way hinder the driver's visibility.
126. The vehicle should have factory standard and/or
factory approved headlamps, with bright/dip facility and properly adjusted.
There should be no covering or colouring of any type over the lenses, and lamps
on both sides should be working. There should be no light of any kind or for any
purposes above headlamp level, except for specific purposes approved by the
Police. Any extra lights must not throw light higher than the standard dipped
beam, or else, must be wired so that they go out when dipped beam comes on. Any
front coloured lights should have only the function of indicator/hazard lights,
and only amber or orange is allowed. Side or parking lamps should only be white.
127. At the rear of all vehicles, including any trailer
or towed vehicle, beside the number plate lights, there should be red tail
(position) lamps and red reflectors: separate red brake (stop) lights of at
least twice the intensity of the tail lamps and amber/orange indicator/hazard
lights. All indicator lamps should flash at not less than five times in five
seconds, and should be clearly visible from 50 metres in bright sunshine.
128. All the above rear lights should be higher than
standard bumper level and at each extremity. Rear red fog lamps and reversing
lights should not be over 21 watts. Reverse lights should be gear-change
actuated, and if not, must have a bright dashboard-level warning light. There
should be no other lights at all at the rear.
129. All vehicles, except passenger cars up to capacity
of five, exceeding any one of the following dimensions, that is, 2.1 metres
width, 2.25 metres height, and 6 metres lenght, in addition should have red
lights at the rear, visible from following vehicles, indicating the four corners
of their outline; if over 6 metres length, they must have red lights along the
lowest edge of their bodywork, at no longer than 1.5 metre intervals, and of no
more than 12 watts.
130. Any vehicle of an industrial or agricultural nature,
including mechanical horses, of any size, shape or type, if not factory equipped
with lights, should be made to comply with the requirements of the article
above, to the satisfaction of the Commissioner of Police. In addition, the
vehicle should have an amber/yellow/orange rotating light (blue Police car type)
over the driver's cabin or at the height, and on the right-hand side of the
centre line of the vehicle; the light is to function at any time when such
vehicle is on the road, whether in use or not.
131. If your vehicle is a road tanker or a vehicle
conveying a tank container carrying a prescribed hazardous substance, it must
display the required hazard warning panels and that these are kept clear and
free from obstruction.
Fitness to drive
132. Make sure that you are fit to drive. You MUST report
to the vehicle licensing Department any health condition likely to affect your
133. Driving when you are tired or in the heat of a
summer's day greatly increases your accident risk.
If you feel at all sleepy, stop in a safe place.
the most effective ways to counter sleepiness are to take a short nap (up
to 15 minutes) or drink, for example, two cups of strong coffee. Fresh air,
exercise or turning up the radio may help for a short time, but are not as
134. You MUST be able to read a vehicle number
plate from a distance of 20.5 metres (67 feet - about five car lengths) in good
daylight. If you need to wear glasses (or contact lenses) to do this, you MUST
wear them at all times whilst driving.
135. At night or in poor visibility, do not use tinted
glasses, lenses or anything that restricts vision.
Alcohol and drugs
136. NEVER DRINK AND DRIVE as it will seriously affect
your judgement and abilities. You MUST NOT
drive with a breath alcohol level higher than 35 µg/100ml or
a blood alcohol level of more than 80 mg/100ml.
give you a false sense of your ability to cope.
reduce your co-ordination and slow down your reactions.
affect your judgement of speed, distance and the risks involved.
reduce your actual driving ability, even if you are below the legal
take time to work through your body; you may even be unfit to drive in
the evening after drinking at lunchtime, or in the morning after drinking the
previous evening. If you are going to drink, arrange another means of transport.
You MUST NEVER drive under the influence of drugs or
reaction altering medicine. Check the instructions or ask your doctor or
pharmacist. Using banned substances is highly dangerous. Never take them before
driving; the effects are unpredictable, but can be even more severe than alcohol
and may result in serious or fatal road accidents.
It is your duty, whether as a motorist or as a pedestrian, to
contribute to road safety. Independently of the rights and wrongs of the case,
it is your duty to avoid an accident if it is within your power to do so.
Accidents and breakdowns
137. If your vehicle breaks down
get your vehicle off the road.
if possible give adequate warning to other traffic by using your hazard
warning lights if your vehicle may cause an obstruction.
if possible put a warning triangle on the road at least 50 metres behind
your broken down vehicle on the same side of the road, or use other accepted
warning devices if you have them.
keep your sidelights on if it is dark or visibility is poor.
do not stand (or let anybody else stand), between your vehicle and
at night or in poor visibility do not stand where you will prevent other
road users seeing your lights.
It is desireable that all vehicles
should carry a reflective warning triangle. It should be used at
any time of the day outside legal parking areas, in addition to
the hazard warning lights if fitted. It should be set up 50
metres from the rear of the obstructing vehicle, on the same
side of the road, 1 metre away from the edge of the road.
Additional rules for Arterial roads
138. If your vehicle develops a problem:
pull on to the hard shoulder or stop as far to the left as possible, with
your wheels turned to the left.
leave the vehicle by the left-hand door and ensure your passengers do the
same. You MUST leave any animals in the vehicle or, in an
emergency, keep them under proper control on the verge.
ensure that passengers keep away from the carriageway and hard shoulder,
and that children are kept under control.
use a mobile phone if available.
never leave the vehicle unattended longer than is necessary to reach an
give full details to the police; also inform them if you are a vulnerable
return and wait near your vehicle (well away from the carriageway and
if you feel at risk from another person, return to your vehicle by a
left-hand door and lock all doors. Leave your vehicle again as soon as
you feel this danger has passed.
139. If you cannot get your vehicle off the
carriageway on to the hard shoulder:
switch on your hazard warning lights and if possible place a warning
triangle at least 50 metres behind the broken vehicle.
leave your vehicle only when you can safely get clear of the carriageway.
140. Disabled drivers
If you have a disability which prevents you from
following the above advice you should:
stay in your vehicle.
switch on your hazard warning lights.
display a 'Help' pennant or, if you have a car or mobile telephone,
contact the emergency services and be prepared to advise them of your
141. If you are involved in an accident
which causes damage or injury to any other person or vehicle or to any
animal, YOU MUST STOP. In the case of a front to rear collision
you should exchange information as requested on the 'front to rear
accident report'. (see separate Annex)
142. In all other cases the accident must be
reported to the police and the vehicles not moved until the police
accident report is drawn up. When required by the police, produce your
driving licence, certificate of insurance and log book. The Police may
allow you to produce them within 48 hours at an indicated Police
Warning signs or flashing lights
143. If you see, hear or have reason to believe
that emergency vehicles are in the vicinity be aware there may be an
144. When passing the scene of an accident do not
be distracted or slow down unnecessarily (for example if an accident is
on the other side of a dual carriageway). This may cause another
accident or traffic congestion.
145. If you are involved in an accident or stop
to give assistance:
use your hazard warning lights to warn other traffic.
ask drivers to switch off their engines and stop smoking.
arrange for the emergency services to be called immediately with full
details of the accident location and any casualties. If you use a mobile
phone, first make sure you have identified your location.
move uninjured people away from the vehicles to safety; on an arterial
road this should, if possible, be well away from the traffic, the hard
shoulder and the central reservation.
do not move injured people from their vehicles unless they are in
immediate danger from fire or explosion.
do not remove a motorcyclist's helmet unless it is essential to do so.
be prepared to give first aid, if you know how to.
stay at the scene until emergency services arrive.
146. If you are involved in any other medical
emergency you should contact the emergency services in the same way.
Accidents involving dangerous goods.
147. Vehicles carrying dangerous goods in
packages should be marked with plain orange reflective plates according
to international regulations. Road tankers and vehicles carrying tank
containers of dangerous goods will have hazard warning plates.
148. If an accident involves a vehicle containing
dangerous goods, follow the advice written above and, in particular:
switch off engines and DO NOT SMOKE.
keep well away from the vehicle and do not be tempted to try to rescue
casualties as you yourself could become one.
call the emergency service and give as much information as possible about
the labels and markings on the vehicle. DO NOT use mobile phone
close to a vehicle carrying flammable loads.
149. Before switching on the engine ensure that
you are properly and comfortably seated and that the seat is firmly
locked in position. Check the setting of your rear and side view
mirrors, and see that both front and rear screens are clean and
unobstructed. Do not leave any articles lying around which are likely to
cause reflections in your field of vision. Use demisting on both front
and rear screens when necessary. Do not wear shoes or dress which by
being too loose or too tight-fitting might interfere with you driving.
Protect your eyes from glare if necessary. Polarised glasses are
particularly helpful in bright sunshine. Adopt a relaxed position but do
not drive with your arm or hand hanging out of the window. Concentrate
on your driving and avoid any distractions.
Check the blind spot before moving off
Rules, techniques and advice for all
drivers and riders
150. This section should be read by all drivers,
motorcyclists and cyclists. The Highway Code does not give you
the right of way in any circumstance, but it advises you when you should
give way to others. Always give way if it can help to avoid an accident.
151. Before you move off, look round, even though
you may have looked in your mirror, to see that no one is about to
overtake you. Give proper signals before moving out, and only move off
when you can do so safely and without inconvenience to other road users.
Give way to passing and overtaking vehicles.
152. Ensure that the doors are properly closed
and, if at night time, that your lights are on.
153. Try to anticipate what pedestrians and
cyclists might do. If pedestrians, particularly children, are looking
the other way, they may step out into the road without seeing you.
154. You must wear a seat
belt if one is available, unless you are exempt. Those exempt from the
requirement include the holders of medical exemption certificates and
people making local deliveries in a vehicle designed for the purpose.
Seat belt requirements
This table summarises the main requirements for wearing seat belts
FRONT SEAT (all vehicles)
REAR SEAT (cars and small
be worn if fitted
be worn if fitted
years of age
be worn if
to 10 and under
(about 5 feet) in
be worn if
If not, an adult
seat belt MUST
be worn if
available If not,
an adult seat
belt SHOULD be
worn if available
to 14 or younger
child 1.5 metres
or more in
Adult seat belt MUST be worn if available
Adult seat belt SHOULD be worn if available
PASSENGER over the age
*Minibuses with an unladen weight of 2540kg or less
155. You SHOULD wear seatbelts in minibuses with an
unladen weight of 2540kgs or less where available. You should wear them in large
mini-buses and coaches where available.
Children in cars
156. Drivers who are carrying children in cars should
children do not sit behind the rear seats in an
estate car or hatchback, unless a special child seat has been fitted.
child safety door locks, where fitted, are used when children are in the
• children are kept under
• a rear-facing baby seat is
NEVER fitted into a seat protected by an airbag.
Make sure children wear the correct restraint
157. KEEP WELL TO THE LEFT, except when you intend to overtake or
turn right. Do not keep in the middle of the road. Do not cut corners.
158. Do not drive too close to the vehicle ahead
and drive at such a speed that you can pull up in good time if the
vehicle ahead makes a sudden move and slows down or stops. The only safe
rule is to never get closer than the overall stopping distance (see
typical stopping distances and the 2 second rule under General Advice)
159. Allow at least a two second gap between you
and the vehicle ahead on fast roads. Double this at least on wet roads,
and increase it even further if there is mud on the road.
160. Remember, large vehicles and motorcycles
need a greater distance than cars to stop.
161. When following a vehicle on the open road,
leave enough space in front of you for an overtaking vehicle; when
another vehicle is overtaking you, do not increase your speed.
Lane discipline and carriageway markings
162. Where the carriageway is marked out by means
of white lines, abide by such lines.
163. Never straddle or cross continuous white
dividers, whether double or single, except in the following
circumstances and only when it is safe to do so:
· to reach adjoining premises, unless there is a 'No
Right Turn' sign prohibiting the turn.
· to enter a side road unless there is a 'No Right
Turn' sign prohibiting the turn.
164. Broken white lines divide the carriageway
into lanes and may be crossed with proper caution and after due notice
to other traffic.
165. A continuous-cum-broken white line may be
crossed only from the side of the broken line, with proper caution and
after due notice to other traffic.
Reflective Road Studs
166. These may be used with white lines.
White studs (Cats Eyes) mark the lanes or the middle of the road.
Road traffic markings and
reflective road studs
Red studs mark the left edge of the road.
Amber studs mark the central reservation of a dual carriageway or
Green studs mark the edge of the main carriageway at lay-bys, side roads
and slip roads.
167. Keep well within the traffic lanes. Do not drive over or
astride the white lines.
168. Do not keep changing lanes. You MUST use the inner (i.e.
left-hand) lane, except when overtaking or turning right. Signal in good time
your intention to change lane after making sure that it is safe to do so.
169. Unless there is an emergency do not stop or park in the
outside lane/s of a multi-lane carriageway. Do not remain in the outer
lanes of a multi-lane carriageway for longer than is necessary unless
you wish to turn to the right and to change to an inner lane would
inhibit traffic wishing to continue straight ahead or turn left.
170. Where the Single Carriageway is divided into
three lanes, use the inner (i.e. left-hand) lane except when overtaking
or where there are signs or light signals directing you to use the
centre lane. Do not overtake if the centre lane is already occupied by
an oncoming vehicle.
171. Remember you have no more right to use the
middle lane than a driver coming from the opposite direction.
do not use the right-hand lane.
172. On a three-lane Divided Carriageway you may
stay in the middle lane when there are slower vehicles in the left-hand
lane, but you should return to the left-hand lane, when you have passed
them. The right-hand lane is for overtaking (or for right-turning
traffic), if you
use it for overtaking move back into the middle lane
and then into the left-hand lane as soon as you can, but without cutting
173. On a four-lane Divided Carriageway the same
principles apply, that is use the lane as near to the left as possible,
change only one lane at a time and use additional caution on account of
the number of lanes.
Climbing and crawler lanes
174. These are provided on some hills. Use this
lane if you are driving a slow moving vehicle or if there are vehicles
behind you wishing to overtake.
175. These are shown by road markings and signs. You
MUST NOT drive or park in a cycle lane marked by a solid white line
during its times of operation. Do not drive or park in a cycle lane
marked by a broken white line unless it is safe to do so.
176. These are shown by road markings and signs.
You MUST NOT drive or stop in a bus lane during its period of
operation unless the signs indicate you may do so.
177. When the lanes are marked out by destination
or when approaching a junction, take your position in time in the
appropriate lane. When necessary give other vehicles the opportunity to
178. If the lane you are travelling on is crossed
by a transverse white line, called a Stop-Line, you must stop with your
front wheels behind the line.
179. Do not drive over obstacle warning lines or
striped islands. Consider these as physical barriers.
180. These are shown by road markings and signs.
You MUST travel or park in the direction indicated by signs. Buses
and/or cycles may sometimes have a contraflow lane. Choose the correct
lane for your exit as soon as you can. Do not change lanes suddenly.
Unless road signs or markings indicate otherwise, you should use
the left-hand lane when going left.
the right-hand lane when going right.
the most appropriate lane when going straight ahead. Remember - traffic
could be passing on both sides.
181. Never overtake unless you are SURE that you
can do so without danger to yourself or others. Be specially careful at
dusk and in mist, when it is more difficult to judge speed and distance.
Overtake on the right
182. This rule does not necessarily apply in the
when the driver in front has signalled his intention to turn right and
you can safely overtake him on his left without inconveniencing other
traffic, or when you are filtering to the left at a junction.
in slow-moving congested traffic when vehicles in the lane on your right
are moving more slowly than you are.
Do not cut in too quickly
183. Before overtaking, give the appropriate
signal, make certain that the vehicle you intend to overtake is aware of
your intention, keep at a safe but not excessive distance from the
vehicle being overtaken and return to the appropriate lane or side of
the road as soon as practicable after overtaking. Do not cut in sharply
in front of the vehicle you have just overtaken.
184. DO NOT OVERTAKE at or when approaching:
a pedestrian crossing, pelican crossing or traffic lights.
a road junction.
a sharp corner or bend.
the brow of a hill.
a hidden dip.
185. DO NOT OVERTAKE
where the road narrows.
when to do so would force another vehicle to swerve or reduce speed.
when there is not enough space and where the visibility does not permit
you to do so without danger.
when there is a long stream or a convoy of vehicles ahead of you or a
vehicle which is itself already overtaking or if overtaking is otherwise
dangerous or difficult for the time being.
186. Give every facility to other vehicles
wanting to overtake you. Allow an overtaking vehicle to get back into
line. Do not accelerate while being overtaken or obstruct an overtaking
187. Be careful of and considerate towards other
road users. You should:
not get flustered if other drivers cause problems; they may be
inexperienced or not know the area well.
be tolerant because anyone can make a mistake.
ignore anyone behaving badly on the road. Involve ment will only make
the situation worse. Slow down or stop, calm down and when you feel
composed, continue your journey.
hold back if a vehicle pulls out into your path at a junction. Allow it
to get clear. Do not over-react by driving too close behind it.
Concentration helps safe
188. Avoid the distractions of:
loud music (this may mask other sounds).
trying to read maps.
inserting a cassette or CD or tuning a radio.
arguing with your passengers or other road users.
eating and drinking.
Mobile phones and in-car technology
189. It is your responsibility to exercise proper
control of your vehicle at all times. Never use a hand mobile phone
or microphone when driving. Using hands free equipment is also
likely to distract your attention from the road. It is far safer not to
use any telephone while you are driving - find a safe place to stop
first. You MUST exercise proper control of your vehicle at all
In slow moving traffic
190. You should:
reduce the distance between you and the vehicle ahead to maintain
never get so close to the vehicle in front that you cannot stop safely
(see the 2 second rule under General Advice).
leave enough space to be able to manoeuvre if the vehicle in front
breaks down or an emergency vehicle needs to get past.
not change lanes to the left to overtake.
allow access into and from side roads, as blocking these will add to
Driving in built-up areas
191. Narrow residential roads.
You should drive slowly and carefully especially in
roads where there are no pavements or sidewalks where there are likely
to be pedestrians, cyclists and parked cars, In some areas a 35 kph
maximum speed limit may be in force. Look out for:
vehicles emerging from junctions and garages.
vehicles moving off (especially without signalling).
pedestrians using the carriageway.
192. Signals alert other road users, including
pedestrians, of your intended actions.
Do not block access to a side road
193. You should:
give clear signals in plenty of time, after establishing it is not
misleading to signal at that time.
signal, before changing course or direction, either to the left or
right, stopping or moving off.
always check they are cancelled after use.
make sure your signals will not confuse others. If, for instance you
want to stop after a side road, do not signal until you are passing the
road. If you signal earlier it may give the impression that you intend
to turn into the road. Your brake lights will warn traffic behind you
that you are slowing down.
use an arm signal to emphasise your signal if necesssary. Remember that
signalling does not give you priority.
watch out for signals given by other road users and proceed only when
you are satisfied that it is safe.
be aware that an indicator on another vehicle may not have been
195. You MUST obey signals given by police
officers and traffic wardens and signs used by school crossing patrols.
196. Before changing direction reduce speed and
keep a watch on the traffic behind you by glancing in your mirror.
197. Before changing direction to the left, keep
as much as possible to the left-hand kerb well in advance of the
turning. If you wish to turn to the right, steer your vehicle as much as
it is prudently possible to the centre of the road without, however,
encroaching on the other half of the road. Do not swing out to the right
before turning left, or vice versa.
198. In roads having more than one lane on each
side, never switch abruptly to the right if you are on the left-hand
lane, nor abruptly to the left if you are proceeding along the
199. Before changing direction either to the left or
right, you must invariably signal your intention to turn well in advance
and make sure that it is safe to do so by looking in your mirror. Make
sure that your direction indicator gives the signal intended and that it
is cancelled immediately after use.
USE THE MIRRORS MAKE A
200. Before you reverse, make sure that there are
no children or other persons or any obstruction in the blind area behind
you. Remember that when reversing and turning, the front part of your
vehicle will protrude further out into the street.
Check all round when reversing
201. Do not reverse from a side road into a main
road, unless it is unavoidable.
202. If your view to the rear is restricted, get
help when reversing.
203. Do not reverse for a greater distance than
is absolutely necessary.
204. Do not reverse on multi-lane carriageways.
205. Use extra care at junctions or
intersections. Look out for the relevant traffic signs, traffic lights
or carriageway markings and abide by them. STOP at STOP
signs. Slow down and give way at GIVE WAY signs. Where there are
no such signs exercise discretion and prudence.
206. Well before you turn at a junction take full
of the position and movement of following traffic.
Always signal your intention and, when safe to do so, take up the
appropriate position. Wait until there is a safe gap between you and any
approaching vehicles before you complete a right turn.
207. On turning at a junction look right, then
left, then right again. Do not go on until you are sure that it is safe
to do so. Do not rely on signals to go ahead given by unauthorised
208. At police-controlled junctions let the
police officer controlling traffic know clearly by your signal which way
you want to go. Do not filter left when straight ahead traffic is held
up unless you receive a signal to do so.
Assess your vehicle's length and do not obstruct
209. When crossing a dual carriageway, treat each
carriageway separately, and if necessary wait at the central
reservation, if any.
210. When waiting for other traffic at junctions,
take up a position where your vehicle will not block other
streams of traffic and, where waiting lines are provided, stop within
Position your vehicle correctly to avoid
211. In a traffic hold-up, NEVER 'jump the
queue' by cutting into another lane or by overtaking the vehicles
waiting in front of you.
Right of way
212. Unless otherwise indicated, traffic on the
major road has right of way over traffic crossing, joining or leaving
the major road.
Turning right side to
Turning left side to
213. At an intersection or junction of a major
road and a minor road, traffic on the latter road should give way to
traffic on or coming off the major road.
214. At the intersection or junction of roads of
equivalent traffic importance, where vehicles approach the intersection
or point of junction simultaneously priority should, unless otherwise
indicated, be accorded to vehicles on the right. However, at
T-junctions, the through road has priority over the branch road.
215. Do not carry out any manoeuvre even with the
use of signals which may force other traffic to slow down or stop
216. You MUST NOT:
drive without due care and attention.
drive without reasonable consideration for other road users.
217. You MUST NOT drive on or over a
pavement or sidewalk except to gain lawful access to property.
218. Give instant priority of passage to fire
engines, ambulances and police or emergency vehicles when you hear or
see the acoustic or the light signal of such vehicles approaching your
direction; in such case, drive to the side of the road and, if
necessary, stop altogether.
2 second rule
Adapt your speed to
keep two seconds travelling distance behind the vehicle ahead.
This may be arrived at by using a pole or other fixed marker as a
reference point and counting one hundred and one, one hundred and
two before your vehicle reaches the reference marker.
Use a fixed point to help measure a two second
220. Adapt your driving to the appropriate
type and condition of road you are on. In particular:
do not treat speed limits as a target. It is often not appropriate or
safe to drive at the maximum speed limit.
take the road and traffic conditions into account. Be prepared for
unexpected or difficult situations, for example the road being blocked
beyond a blind bend. Be prepared to adjust your speed as a precaution.
where there are junctions, be prepared for vehicles emerging.
in side roads and country lanes look out for unmarked junctions where
nobody has priority.
when two vehicles going in opposite directions meet in a narrow stretch
of road, unless signs indicate otherwise, the one nearest to the wider
part of the road MUST reverse to let the other vehicle pass.
when two vehicles going in opposite directions meet on a hill, unless
signs indicate otherwise, the vehicle going uphill has priority over the
vehicle going downhill.
221. When approaching a roundabout, watch out for
traffic already on it. Take special care to look out for cyclists or
motorcyclists ahead or to the side. Give way to traffic on your right
unless road markings indicate otherwise; but keep moving if the way is
clear. At some junctions there may be more than one roundabout. At each,
apply the normal rules for roundabouts. Keep a special look out for the
'Give Way' signage.
222. Where there are two lanes at the entrance to
a roundabout, unless signs or road markings indicate otherwise:
When turning left:
Approach in the left-hand lane; keep to that lane in the roundabout.
When going forward:
Approach in the left-hand lane; keep to that lane in the roundabout. If
conditions dictate (for example, if the left-hand lane is blocked),
approach in the right-hand lane; keep to that lane in the roundabout. If
the roundabout itself is clear of other traffic, take the most
convenient lane through the roundabout.
When turning right:
Approach in the right-hand lane; keep to that lane in the roundabout.
223. When there are more than two lanes at the
entrance to a roundabout, unless signs or road markings indicate
otherwise, use the clearest convenient lane on approach and through the
roundabout suitable for the exit you intend to take.
224. When in a roundabout, look out for and show
consideration to other vehicles crossing in front of you, especially
those intending to leave by the next exit. Show particular consideration
for cyclists and motorcyclists.
Signals at Roundabouts
225. When turning left:
Use the left turn indicator on approach and through
Signals at roundabouts
When going forward:
Use the left turn indicator when passing the exit
before the one to be taken.
When turning right:
Use the right turn indicator on approach, and
maintain this signal until passing the exit before the one to be taken.
Then change to the left turn indicator.
226. Watch out for cyclists and motorcyclists and
give them room. Allow for long vehicles which may have to take a
different course, both on the approach to and in the roundabout.
227. These should be approached in the same way
as normal roundabouts. All vehicles MUST pass round the central markings
except large vehicles which may be physically incapable of doing so.
228. At double mini-roundabouts treat each
roundabout separately and give way to traffic from the right.
229. At some complex junctions, there may be a series of
mini-roundabout at the intersection. Treat each mini-roundabout
separately and follow the normal rules.
230. Do not take your right of way for granted if
you have reason to suspect that the other vehicle is not conceding
priority. You should still take the necessary action to avoid an
231. IF YOU ARE IN DOUBT - GIVE RIGHT OF WAY
Stopping and Parking
232. Do not park or let your vehicles stand:
where there is a parking prohibition.
at or within 5 metres of a road junction.
near a bend or the brow of a hill .
on a footway, unless otherwise authorised.
on or within 4 metres of a pedestrian crossing, from the side of
oncoming traffic or within the limits of zig-zag lines on the approach
side of the crossing.
in a tunnel or under a bridge.
in a main road or in a road carrying fast moving traffic, if such
parking or standing affects the smooth flow of traffic.
opposite or nearly opposite another standing vehicle, a refuge or other
alongside a stationary vehicle (double parking).
within 12 metres on each side of any bus stop or fare stage.
near a school or a hospital or doctors' entrance or where it will
obscure a traffic sign.
on the wrong side of a badly lit road at night.
with the headlights on at night time.
in such a position as to obstruct other parked vehicles.
on traffic islands delineated by painted diagonal lines.
in such a way as to impede access into or exit out of a garage.
233. Trailers and all vehicles with projecting
loads, SHOULD NOT be left on a road at night without lights.
234. You MUST NOT park in spaces reserved
for specific users, such as Blue Badge holders or residents, unless you
are eligible to do so.
Enter a box junction only if your exit road is
235. DO NOT park partially or wholly on
the pavement unless there are signs that permit it. Parking on the
pavement can obstruct and inconvenience pedestrians, people with prams
or pushchairs or wheelchairs and the visually impaired.
Controlled Parking Zones
236. The zone entry signs indicate the times when
the waiting restrictions within the zone are in force.
237. Vehicles with a maximum laden weight of over
7.5 tonnes (including any trailer) SHOULD NOT be parked on a
verge, pavement or any land situated between carriageways, without
police permission. The only exception is when parking is essential for
loading and unloading, in which case the vehicle SHOULD NOT be
Loading and Unloading
238. Do not load or unload where there are yellow
markings on the road or upright No Parking signs which advise
restrictions are in place.
239. You should park parallel to the kerb, unless
there are parking bays which indicate otherwise. Motorcycles, however,
should be parked at an angle not less than 45o to the kerb.
If you park on a hill you should:
park close to the kerb and apply the handbrake.
select a forward gear and turn your steering
wheel away from the kerb when facing uphill.
select reverse gear and turn your steering wheel
towards the kerb when facing downhill.
use 'park' if your car has an automatic gearbox.
Police stopping procedures
241. If the police want to stop your vehicle they
will, where possible, attract your attention by:
flashing blue lights or headlights or sounding their siren or horn.
directing you to pull over to the side by pointing and or using the left
242. You MUST then pull over and stop as
soon as it is safe to do so. Then switch off your engine.
Normal stopping procedures
243. Before stopping, signal your intention to do
so in good time and when you draw up, pull in as close as possible to
the kerb or edge of the road. Be sure that the engine is switched off,
the hand-brake set securely and the gear is put in low or reverse before
you leave the car (use 'park' if your car has an automatic gearbox). On
an incline, turn the front wheels towards the kerb.
Check before opening
244. In disc zones, set the disc and display it
in a prominent place on the dashboard.
245. At night always drive well within the limits
of your lights so that you may stop in time if necessary.
246. Use dipped headlights at night in built up
247. On unlit roads always use headlights. When
meeting other vehicles and cyclists dip the headlights. If you are
dazzled, slow down or stop. Extra lights may not be fitted, spot lights
may only be operative when full beam is selected. Reverse lights may
only work when reverse gear is selected or a separate dash board warning
light shows when the reverse lights are on.
248. When driving behind another vehicle, dip the
249. Your vehicle's lights enable you to see and
be seen. In daytime, whenever visibility is poor, switch on your lights
and in mist use fog lights, if available and/or dipped headlights.
Bright headlights reduce visibility in fog.
250. Never use your hazard warning lights when
the vehicle is in motion unless reasonably required, such as an
251. All motor vehicles shall have stop lights,
rear view mirror and direction indicators fitted. The direction
indicators are to be so fitted as to be clearly visible from the front
and from the rear. Motor vehicles, except motor cycles, shall have
windscreen wipers. These fittings shall be maintained in good working
252. Red reflectors should only face to the rear.
Headlights may be white or yellow. Side lamps show a
white light to the front (or yellow if incorporated in a yellow
headlamp). A rear lamp shows a red light to the rear.
253. Be sure your lights are on during
lighting-up time, i.e. between sunset and sunrise and when visibility is
limited due to weather conditions. See that your front and rear lamps
and rear registration plate lamps are alight at night.
254. Pay attention to red warning lanterns or red
reflecting triangles placed on the road; the road may be obstructed or
an accident may have taken place.
255. If another driver flashes his headlights
never assume that it is a signal to go. Use your own judgement and
proceed with care.
256. When approaching a junction or when
overtaking another vehicle during lighting up time, flash your
headlights to give notice of your approach or manoeuvre - like sounding
your horn, it lets another road user know you are there.
257. If an oncoming vehicle has undipped
headlights you may attract its driver's attention by flashing for an
instant but do not keep your headlights on in retaliation.
258. When driving through tunnels in Malta it is
obey the speed limits shown.
stay in lane through the entire length of the tunnel.
Use of horns
259. Horns give notice of your presence or
approach, but do not give you any special rights. Use your horn
sparingly and when necessary.
260. In built-up areas and especially at night,
horns should be used only in an emergency.
261. Horns should be efficient and not cause any
nuisance. Car radios or stereos should be used at a volume which will
not inconvenience others and which will not impair the driver from
hearing or driving properly. Drivers should not use headphones or
anything else that may prevent them from hearing or driving properly.
262. When the 'Road Works Ahead' sign is
displayed, you will need to be more watchful and look for additional
signs providing more specific instructions.
You MUST NOT exceed any temporary maximum speed limit.
Use your mirrors and get into the correct lane for your vehicle in good
time and as signs direct.
Do not switch lanes to overtake queuing traffic.
Do not drive through an area marked off by traffic cones.
Watch out for traffic entering or leaving the works area, but do not be
distracted by what is going on there.
Bear in mind that the road ahead may be obstructed by the works or by
slow moving or stationary traffic.
Additional rules for high speed roads
263. Take special care on arterial and other high
speed dual carriageways.
One or more lanes may be closed to traffic and a lower speed limit may
Works vehicles that are slow moving or stationary with a large 'Keep
Left' or 'Keep Right' sign on the back are sometimes used to close lanes
Check mirrors, slow down and change lanes if necessary.
Keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front.
264. This means that you may be travelling in a
narrower lane than normal and with no permanent barrier between you and
oncoming traffic. The hard shoulder may be used for traffic, but be
aware that there may be broken down vehicles ahead of you. Keep a good
distance from the vehicle ahead and observe any temporary speed limits.
Safety of Pedestrians
265. When approaching a PEDESTRIAN CROSSING
always be ready to slow down or to stop so as to give way to
pedestrians; give them the right of way on these crossings.
Signal to other drivers your intention to slow down or to stop. Allow
yourself more time to stop when the road is wet or downhill.
266. DO NOT pass a vehicle which has
stopped or slowed down at a PEDESTRIAN CROSSING.
267. At pedestrian crossings controlled by light
signals or by the police, give way to any pedestrian who is still
crossing when the signal to move is given.
268. Watch for the pedestrian who comes out
suddenly from behind stationary vehicles or other obstructions. Be
specially careful of this near schools and bus stops.
269. When turning at a road junction give way to
pedestrians who are crossing. On country roads watch out for pedestrians
and give them plenty of room especially on left-hand bends.
270. Most pedestrians killed or seriously injured
are either under 15 or over 60. The young and the elderly may not judge
speed very well and may step into the road when you do not expect them.
Watch out for blind people who may be carrying white sticks (white with
two red reflectorised bands for deaf/blind people) or using guide dogs,
and for the disabled or infirm. Give them plenty of time to cross the
road. Remember that deaf people may not hear your vehicle approaching.
271. Take special care near children's play
areas, as children at play may dash across the road without warning
(such as to chase a ball).
272. Speed Limits
Type of vehicles
Cars and motorcycles
(not exceeding 12 mtr
in overall lenghth) and
vehicles up to 3 tonnes
(exceeding 3 tonnes
maximum laden weight
(including vehicles on tow)
273. These are absolute maximum speeds, but there
are numerous situations where prudence demands a lower speed in view of
road surface and configuration, weather conditions, traffic density and
presence of pedestrians or other hazards.
274. Driving at speeds too fast for the road and
traffic conditions can be dangerous. You should always reduce your speed
the road layout or condition presents hazard, such as bends.
sharing the road with pedestrians and cyclists, particularly children,
driving at night as it is harder to see other road users.
275. Any of the above speeds may be restricted by
appropriate traffic signs. Ambulances, fire-engines, police cars and
other emergency vehicles, using the siren and flashing light or other
appropriate signal are exempt from the above speed limits.
276. Unless there are sufficient reasons to
the contrary, do not drive at a speed below the average speed of the
general traffic flow at the particular place and time.
277. Do not hold up a long queue of traffic. If
you are driving a large or slow-moving vehicle and the road is narrow or
winding, or there is a lot of traffic coming towards you, you MUST
pull in where you can do so safely so that other vehicles can overtake.
Look out for motorcyclysts at junctions
278. Never drive at such a speed that you cannot
pull up within the distance that you can see to be clear.
Remember that your visibility is reduced at corners
and over the crests of hills, and that your braking distance is greater
downhill or when the road is wet or slippery.
279. You should:
leave enough space between you and the vehicle in front so that you can
pull up safely if it suddenly slows down or stops. The safe rule is
never to get closer than the overall stopping distance (see Typical
Stopping Distance diagram on page 69).
allow at least a two-second gap between you and the vehicle in front on
roads carrying fast traffic. The gap should be at least doubled on wet
roads an increased still further on muddy roads.
remember, large vehicles and motorcycles need a greater distance to
280. You need a certain time to react in an
emergency. Your reactions are slower if you are tired, sleepy, dazzled
or if your faculties are in any way impaired. If you feel any signs of
strain, slow down and double your caution, and if necessary stop at the
first suitable place until you are rested.
Shortest Stopping Distances - in metres
282. On a dry road, a good car with good brakes
and tyres and an alert driver will stop in the distances shown.
283. Remember these are the shortest stopping
distances. Stopping distances increase greatly with wet and slippery
roads, poor brakes and tyres, and a tired driver.
284. Skidding is caused by the driver braking,
accelerating or steering too harshly or driving too fast for the road
conditions. If skidding occurs, ease off the brake or accelerator and
try to steer smoothly in the direction of the skid. For example, if the
rear of the vehicle skids to the right, steer quickly and smoothly to
the right to recover.