Know How / Road legal

Whether you’re a budding young tractor driver who can’t wait to get on the road or an experienced farmer towing heavy trailers or wide loads, we’ll be keeping tabs on all the rules and regulations you need to know about.

Non-compliance can cost drivers and businesses heavily, so this section details age limits, vehicle weights, driver hours, required training and checks that are essential reading for anyone hitting the road with farm machinery.

Key areas of focus:

  • CPC and tachograph rules
  • Tractors on the road
  • Red diesel rules
  • Trailer weights
  • Legal age for driving farm vehicles

Practical advice

See all


Trailer safety updates ahead of silage season

As the silage season fast approaches, farmers are urged to make sure trailers are safe and well maintained in line with current legislation. The Tilly Trailer Pass campaign was founded…


Combine road safety: Is your header trailer up to scratch?

Farmers taking combines on the road at harvest time should check whether their header trailers are road legal and fit for purpose. And with many large arable outfits now running…


Taking your tractor test – all you need to know

The Driving Standards Agency (DSA) tractor test gives budding farmers the chance to drive machines on the road at the age of 16, but it shouldn't be taken lightly. The…


Video: All you need to know to pass your B+E trailer test

So you’ve been driving since you could reach the pedals, passed your tractor test at 16, car test at 17 and can reverse 40ft trailers around the yard for fun.…


Contractor gives his trailer safety must-haves

Running 100 trailers on a fleet, Simon Williams of SW Hire needs to know everything is road-legal and safe and orders his trailers with certain key extras to make sure…


Red diesel rules: the law on working with AD plants

Our red diesel feature – Red diesel Q&A: HMRC rules untangled – threw up a few more reader questions, so we’ve been back to the experts for more details on…


Red diesel Q&A: HMRC rules untangled

It is regularly quoted in farming circles that the use of red diesel is a very grey area, but the rules are actually pretty black and white and the Memorandum…


Legal tips for buying and selling second-hand machinery

Buyers and sellers of second-hand machinery face numerous potential legal, transactional and safety pitfalls. Alex Forster of Roythornes Solicitors answers the key questions:  What Health & Safety Executive guidelines are…


Video: Trailer covers and roll-over tarps - the best options

Some form of cover for agricultural trailers is becoming commonplace to secure loads or protect them from the elements and contamination. They range from cut-to-size covers with elastic securing straps…


Farm vehicle use - are you insured?

Farmers face having vehicle insurance claims declined in the event of an accident if full details are not disclosed to the insurer. Many farmers will have a fleet vehicle insurance…


CPC and tachograph rules – all you need to know

Arable farmers are increasingly seeing the benefits of using artic lorries to haul grain from the combine, slashing costs by removing multiple tractors and trailers from the roads. These vehicles…


Guide to keeping your farm ATV legal on the road

Lots of farmers use all-terrain-vehicles to scuttle between pockets of land, which means their bikes need to comply with UK road rules. So what are the dos and don’ts? All-terrain-vehicles,…


See all


Rule reminder: Trailer safety, tractor speed and licences

Farmers should check their harvest equipment is fit for the road and that employees are aware of the rules that govern maximum tractor speeds and trailer weights. PC Dan Cox…


Tractor makers grapple with yet more emissions rules

Much of the development costs of new tractors these days involves engine emissions. Will that soon end? Probably not, says Peter Hill. Just when everyone thought the clampdown on tractor…


Rural road safety in the spotlight

If you judge a driver solely on how much experience they've had behind the wheel, young farmers should be some of this country's best. Just think about how much practice…


Car accident survivor recounts her story

In 1998, when she was 16 years old, Hannah Knowles was a passenger in a tragic car accident that killed her brother Michael and three friends. She recounts her story…