Myths often start out as stories that passed from person to person through word of mouth. As they spread, the facts get altered and altogether tend to lose their truth. If you are a driver in Singapore, you are more than likely to have heard a number of driving superstitions and myths from fellow drivers as well.
However, what may seem to be harmless superstitions can be dangerous to believe, and even land you in jail. We tackle the 8 most common driving myths in Singapore and prove them false once and for all.
Myth: You can only be caught for a drink-driving offence if the car is moving
Many drivers in Singapore believe that drink-driving is only an offence if you are caught drinking in a moving car. However, you can actually get arrested just for drinking alcohol in a stationary car.
As long as you are drinking while in the driver’s seat, you can get charged with the offence of having the intent of driving the car while intoxicated.
Play it safe by getting a friend who has not drunk alcohol to drive you home, or take a taxi.
Myth: Passengers in rear seats do not need to wear seatbelts
This myth is another one with grave consequences if believed. While it may seem like passengers in the rear seats may not need to buckle up as much as those in the front, that is not true at all.
Rear seat passenger deaths related to lack of seatbelts are extremely common, and in an accident, rear-seat passengers without seatbelts may be violently ejected through the front window of the car and face grave injuries.
As if these were not enough as deterrents, you can incur a fine of S$120 and 3 demerit points if you are caught without a seatbelt in the rear. So, better be safe than sorry and buckle up no matter how short your trip is.
Myth: Rocking your car while refuelling can get you more fuel
So here is the theory: tilting your car allows more volume of fuel to fill the tank. This may be partially true, but the amount of extra fuel you would get would only be a very negligible amount.
Additionally, filling your tank too much can cause a fuel leak which may result in an explosion or fire starting since petrol is extremely flammable.
Myth: You need a landed property to own an electric car
If your dream car is electric but you decided against it due to this very reason, you are in luck. In the past, this may have been true, as charging points were not readily available to those living in HDB and condominium parking areas.
These days, however, charging points are a common sight in many multi-story and ground HDB carparks, in addition to the electric car charging points available at most car showrooms, making restrictions due to charging point availability a thing of the past.
Myth: The speed limit on roads without clear speed limit signs is 60km/h
The speed limit in Singapore on roads without an explicit speed limit sign is 50km/h. Not abiding by this limit can land you up to 24 demerit points depending on how many km/h you are exceeding the speed limit by.
Myth: Mobile phone usage at petrol stations can cause an explosion
All of us have seen that sign at petrol stations advising us not to use our mobile phones. As a result, a whole bunch of theories have arisen from it, striking fear into the hearts of Singaporeans for fear of causing an explosion from picking up a phone call.
In theory, yes, radiation can ignite petrol. However, the truth is that phones simply do not emit high enough radiation to cause an explosion at a petrol station.
Myth: Road-hogging is legal
Road-hogging can actually earn you more than the ire of your fellow drivers. It is an offence that can land you a fine of up to S$1000. So the next time you are on the road, do yourself a favour and just give way to faster-moving vehicles. You will save yourself a lot of trouble and a hefty fine.
Myth: If you are the driver, it is illegal to use your phone in the car
Myth or not, using mobile phones while at the wheel is something most Singaporean drivers are guilty of. In truth, you can use your mobile phones while in the driver’s seat, as long as the car is stationary. The moment you start driving again, it’s illegal to have the phone in your hand regardless of whether it’s switched on or not.
With these myths debunked, we hope you can stay safer on the road and help your friends and family stay safer too! For more car-related myths debunked, check out our other articles:
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