Everyone has that pang of dread when they wake up on a frosty morning and they see a parade of cars parked on the side of the road with ice and snow all over the windscreen.
The best solution is to turn on the engine, let the hot air blower work its magic and scrape off the rest of the ice whilst you wait for the windscreen to be completely clear.
Unfortunately, some methods such as pouring boiling water on the glass can not only be less effective than you might expect but can even lead to cracks and the need for a replacement.
It takes some time, and some people do not have the patience to wait until their windscreen completely clears, so they drive off whilst the ice is still melting, unaware that they have committed a crime in the process.
According to the Highway Code, Rule 229 stipulates that before a driver sets off, they must be able to see, their lights and number plates must be clearly visible, mirrors must be clear and windows must be demisted.
If a driver cannot see clearly out of their windscreen, they are considered to be not in full control of their car and could be charged with various road traffic offences.
The penalties can include fines and even bans from driving depending on the seriousness of the infraction.
In 2022, a driver in Scotland was stopped in Dumfries with frozen windows and only a tiny portion of visibility from the windscreen, eventually being convicted a year later, fined £500 and banned from driving for a year.
This highlights not only how seriously driving with an obscured windscreen is considered to be by police, but also sets a precedent for the penalties that could potentially be dispensed.
Ultimately, the price of a scraper, the extra work and the extra time is a much lower price to pay than a potential year-long driving ban.