Law

5 Strangest Driving Laws Across the World

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Most drivers would agree it is important to observe basic driving laws, such as stopping at red lights and signaling turns; using turn signals when necessary and adhering to speed limits; however, certain countries have more eccentric or peculiar driving rules that drivers must abide by.

Russia makes it illegal to drive with dirty car, while Cyprus fines drivers who eat while driving an EUR85 fine. Here are five of the strangest driving laws worldwide.

1. It’s Illegal to Clean Your Car in Russia

Many of us take driving laws for granted–we stop at red lights, use our turn signals, and adhere to the speed limit. What you may not realize is that different countries have very specific driving rules; any violations could result in fineable violations.

Russian law forbids carwashes unless conducted in designated areas, in an attempt to keep Moscow streets cleaner during snowy winter months when vehicles tend to get filthy from being driven around with excessively dirty wheels. Furthermore, driving dirty vehicles against the law is against the law, making frequent carwashing essential.

Russia has other eccentric rules that may come as a surprise, such as not turning left at red lights and only being allowed to make U-turns at certain intersections. Also prohibited is using anti-radar equipment that interferes with specific radio frequencies to jam police signals; hitchhikers are prohibited while driving there too!

Other bizarre driving laws around the world include not being allowed to eat while driving in Cyprus (unless using a special cup for it), being restricted to using credit cards when paying in fast-food restaurants in South Africa and wearing a shirt while driving in Thailand. Germany prohibits making quick offensive gestures while driving and number plates must be clean enough for easy readability in England – and Business Insider has an entire article dedicated to these eccentric regulations! Interested in discovering more strange driving laws? Business Insider provides a full breakdown!

2. It’s Illegal to Wash Your Car on Sunday in Switzerland

Driving a car requires many considerations, from keeping it clean to remembering to use your parking break – there are various rules and regulations you must abide by. Some countries, however, may present more unique regulations. Thailand for instance prohibits men driving without wearing a shirt while Switzerland prohibits car washing on Sunday (though car washes may allow this). Knowing these obscure laws before traveling abroad could be invaluable.

Germany prohibits stopping your car for any reason other than an emergency on the Autobahn, including running out of fuel. This law exists to ensure cars operate efficiently and prevent accidents or road closures. Denmark mandates checking under your car before beginning your journey for children or animals before beginning your trip; Spain prohibits wearing flip flops while driving; while Macedonia mandates that passengers riding as passengers remain sober at all times.

Of course, there are other strange driving laws to keep an eye out for; in certain states in the US it is against the law to use a hands-free phone while driving or switch time limited parking spots during traffic congestion; while other countries fine drivers who drive dirty cars or consume ice cream while behind the wheel. Here are 14 more of these bizarre driving laws from around the world which you should familiarise yourself with before embarking on any long trips on the open road.

3. It’s Illegal to Clean Your Car in Denmark

As is often the case, different countries have unique driving regulations that may baffle foreign drivers. From not towing your car in Germany to not washing your car on Sunday in Denmark, such rules create strange driving experiences that leave their mark.

Moscow law makes it illegal for drivers to keep their car dirty; with an average annual snowfall of 1.5 meters making keeping your vehicle tidy a challenge. You are however permitted to wash it on private grounds or secure easements; should you decide to drive through the city center while remaining disorganized be aware that police may stop and ticket you as they usually pull over drivers who violate this regulation.

Denmark makes it illegal to drive within city limits without headlights on, since they help increase visibility and enhance safety. If caught, fines of up to $2200 could apply.

Before beginning to drive in Denmark, it is mandatory that you check under your car for children before beginning. Otherwise, they could become trapped under it and you won’t be able to assist if their presence causes difficulty for driving.

Other strange driving laws include not smoking in Japan (for fear of hitting a pedestrian) and not turning off your headlights at railway level crossings in Sweden. Eating while driving is illegal in Cyprus and front passengers must always wear seat belts; Germany prohibits stopping for no apparent reason on its Autobahn and any time someone splashes someone with water or mud while driving can lead to fines being issued as well as restrictions.

4. It’s Illegal to Splash a Pedestrian with Mud or Water in Japan

As a driver, there are certain laws you probably follow without question – stopping at red lights, using turn signals and driving within speed limits are just part of what makes driving enjoyable and safe. But what if there were additional laws you were unaware of which could get you in trouble?

Japan has laws against splashing water or mud onto pedestrians while they walk, such as raindrops or road spills. Anytime water hits someone while they are walking on a sidewalk it could result in fines for drivers as this law was designed to stop drivers accidentally injuring or upsetting pedestrians.

As Japan has tight streets with numerous obstacles that can easily cause accidents if distracted, Japan prohibits drivers from talking on the phone or texting while on the road. If you need to make an important call quickly, however, pull over somewhere safe first and park before calling.

Japan requires that drivers give way to pedestrians as the roads are usually very narrow and there may not be enough sidewalks for everyone’s use, leading to diagonal crossings or missing the crossing altogether. When encountering such individuals at crossings it is imperative that you stop your vehicle to let them pass safely.

Though most of these unique driving laws aren’t serious, it is still wise to keep them in mind if traveling to any of these countries. Remember, every country has their own set of rules which may or may not align with yours.

5. It’s Illegal to Shoot an Animal from Your Car in Tennessee

While most driving laws are designed with your safety in mind, some are absurd. In Russia, anyone caught washing their car using a garden hose could face fines of up to 2,000 roubles – that’s an expensive fine for soap and water! In Tennessee however, shooting any animal from your car is illegal with one exception being whales which, frankly speaking, makes little sense!

Tennessee law also forbids smoking in your car with children aged under 12. Apparently this law exists to protect young ones from exposure to fumes; yet it seems odd given Tennessee is home to famous distillery Jack Daniels as well as plenty of other awesome products.

Tennessee driving laws contain several odd and eccentric regulations, one being it is against the law to wrestle bears. Although this seems odd at first glance, this regulation makes sense given that bears were often part of circus acts where they would be wrestled by men after having their claws declawed and muzzled first. Also in University City it’s illegal to honk someone else’s horn too loudly in their neighborhood; and Alaska prohibits tethering dogs to the top of cars – no doubt fearing Scooby-Doo getting eaten by polar bears while you drive!

This story originally appeared on Business Insider and is being republished with permission. Please visit their homepage for more great stories like this or start your free trial to become an Insider today.