DGT penalties for misusing vehicle indicators

Penalties for misusing indicators in Spain

Image of a vehicle indicator. Credit: LastMan21/Shutterstock.com

The correct use of vehicle indicators in Spain is a hot topic among British expatriates, often prompting numerous comments. But many have wondered what, if any, are the DGT fines for misusing turn signals.

The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) insists on the judicious use of turn signals to enhance road safety and imposes fines for non-compliance.

Penalties for neglecting indicators

In its commitment to road safety, the DGT has set fines reaching up to €200 for drivers failing to use their turn signals where required. Additionally, if turn signals are not activated at the right time, the penalty may be as high as €80.

Paying the fine within 20 days of notification can halve the amount due. These measures highlight the DGT’s aim to curb accidents and promote orderly traffic flow.

The DGT’s guidelines

Indicators, serve as a critical communication tool among drivers and pedestrians, signalling intentions to change lanes, turn, overtake, merge, stop, or park.

  • In turns and changes of direction: It is mandatory to signal with the indicator before making any turn or change of direction on the road.
  • When changing lanes: Before changing lanes, for example when we are on highways, the driver must signal sufficiently in advance to alert nearby vehicles.
  • During overtaking: When overtaking another vehicle, it is essential to indicate the manoeuvre with the corresponding turn signal before leaving the lane we are occupying.
  • When entering traffic: Whether we are leaving a parking lot or joining a road from an access, the turn signals must be used to inform other drivers of the manoeuvre.
  • At roundabouts: It is important to use turn signals when entering and exiting roundabouts to indicate direction and exit intentions.
  • When parking or stopping: The use of turn signals is necessary when making stops or parking on public roads, thereby informing both other drivers and pedestrians travelling on the streets.

Avoiding fines for incorrect signal use starts with a thorough understanding of traffic laws, particularly at complex junctions like roundabouts where misuse is common in Spain.

Habitually using indicators for every manoeuvre, regardless of the presence of other vehicles or pedestrians, ensures clear intent and integrates signal use into driving habits, safeguarding against penalties.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.


    • Bob Scratchit

      22 February 2024 • 17:10

      This is running before one can walk – how about focusing on actually using indicators first

    • Mark

      23 February 2024 • 10:36

      LOL, I didn’t realise Spanish cars had indicators, they never use them.

    • Robert Faraday

      23 February 2024 • 11:09

      Excellent article. Perhaps the DGT could pay to advertise on these numerous advertising hoardings along most main roads with such info. Many years ago the phrase “Speed Kills” on the hoardings were successful in the UK, I remember.

    • Brian

      23 February 2024 • 13:41

      As I rarely see police vehicles indicating anything (also seen them driving with arm out of the window, smoking etc!) what chance is there of a fine?

    • Adrian

      23 February 2024 • 16:09

      Please can you explain what the correct signal at approach to roundabout is ? I have to put my right indicator on to enter the roundabout, but I do not want to leave roundabout to 3rd exit. So do I immediately cancel my right indicator and put my left one on ? Thats farcical and 100% dangerous. Or do I enter the roundabout and put my left indicator on when I am turning right into roundabout ? For me, the correct signals should be, Enter roundabout- no signal. Stay in right hand lane till passing exit before the one I want and then put my Right indicator on. But, the vast majority of drivers presume you are going to turn right when in fact you want to go to next exit. Guide lines from DGT say you do not have to indicate with left indicator but I strongly advise you to do so ! May I just add that I have had many years experience in Londons Traffic Police and dealing with motoring offences and inevitable serious accidents.. The present system here is good though few drivers obey the rules but this new idea needs a lot of advanced thinking ! Please remember that it is better to be 10 minutes late in this world than 25 years to soon in next .

    • Anders

      23 February 2024 • 16:33

      Hope DGT pass on these hints to UK authorities. Especially with regard to the entering and exiting of roundabouts. See hundreds of the lazy %^&**$%’s every day, who either display they are continuing their manoeuvre PAST the exit they actually make or, indicate TOO EARLY, their intended exit, thus telling us drivers that it is OK to proceed but then, go past that indicated exit and make a beeline for your front end instead.. Sadly, I can see no improvement developing in the UK. Not enough police about, insufficient camera surveillance and a government that doesn’t relaly give a **** when it comes to road safety. ( unless you are a lycra clad, 2 wheel addict with a Go Pro clad helmet ) . They are their own police, judge jury and witness, to ANY acts of anything bigger than themselves. 😉

    • eddie

      23 February 2024 • 20:39

      It does not mention the ‘ Divine right of the indicator; which most seem to use on joining a motorway, Most drivers do not seem to realise it is required to give way to the vehicle on the motorway, not a signal to ‘Get out of the way I’m coming in’.

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