Driving in London can be challenging and sometimes stressful. Getting to know the rules of the road and planning your route carefully will help you get to your destination quicker and safer, and you’ll also avoid the risk of a driving penalty. Read the highway code.
Here are a few specific tips:
Yellow box junctions
Barnet’s yellow box junctions have been carefully placed to keep traffic moving sensibly and safely. These are all painted as yellow grids on the road but a ‘box junction’ may be of any shape, based on the need of the junction.
Always check that you have space and time to exit the box without stopping in it, even if it means waiting longer than you - or other drivers - would like!
If you need to turn right out of a yellow box and are either waiting with other cars to do so, or for a space in the oncoming traffic to make your turn, you may stop until it is safe to move on.
The school run can be a stressful part of the day for road users, as it means a 20% increase rush hour traffic. Aim to give yourself an extra ten minutes in case of delays and consider avoiding school areas if possible. Never be tempted to park on the yellow zigzag at school entrances: they are there to keep children safe. And remember: be respectful of local residents.
Zigzag safety zones can also be found around hospitals, fire stations, police and ambulance stations. You cannot wait, stop or park in them during the times displayed.
Directional, instruction and banned manoeuvre signs
Directional arrows are to guide you to the correct route or lane as you approach junctions or other potentially risky zones. These signs are blue, and are often backed up by signs painted on the road.
Different instructions may be displayed on an automated display sign depending on time of day or traffic need; check carefully each time you approach one.
Banned or restricted turns and routes tend to have red signage and are there for your and others’ safety. Never be tempted to drive into a no entry or one-way road; it’s an offence to even reverse back past a sign, or to push a vehicle through a prohibited area or in the wrong direction.
Bus lanes, vital to keeping Barnet moving, are also off-limits to other vehicles – particularly during busy periods. Any restriction times or types will be displayed on the sign.