5. Related to alteration of vehicles
The Road Traffic (Construction and Maintenance of Vehicles) Regulations ( Cap.374A of the Laws of Hong Kong) contain various requirements for the construction and maintenance of vehicles, including dimensions, weight, power, braking efficiency, tyres, etc.
Section 53(2) of the Road Traffic Ordinance (Cap.374 of the Laws of Hong Kong) provides that “no person shall alter or cause or permit to be altered a motor vehicle or trailer so as to render its condition such that the use thereof on a road would contravene any provision of this Ordinance as to the construction, weight, equipment, brakes, steering gear or tyres thereof”. The maximum penalty for contravening this provision is a fine of $20,000.
Reading these 2 provisions together, one can clearly see that the Government takes a serious view of the alteration of motor vehicles. Probably most drivers will not consider altering or modifying the engines of their vehicles so as to turn them into powerful racecars. But drivers may be tempted to add some fanciful fittings to their beloved vehicles. Since this subject can be substantially technical, the Transport Department has published guidelines for the general public’s reference, being:
- “Alterations and Modifications to Vehicles: Do’s and Don’ts”; and
- “Guide to Notifiable Alteration – Motor Vehicle”
Drivers who intend to alter or modify their vehicles are advised to read these 2 guidelines and to consult the vehicle manufacturer or agent for their advice / endorsement before carrying out any alterations.