Tunnel AreaThere are special rules for tunnel users. These rules apply not only in tunnels but also on some roads leading to or from a tunnel. The tunnel and the roads to which these special rules apply are known as a 'Tunnel area'. Traffic signs mark the beginning and end of the 'Tunnel area'.

You must obey all signals given by Police Officers and Tunnel Officers.

Tunnel Area EndWhere there are two or more lanes open to Traffic through a tunnel, approach in the appropriate lane for the lane you wish to use in the tunnel. Keep in lane through the tunnel, do not cross any 'Double white' lines, even if your lane is blocked.

All tunnels have two tubes, one for each direction of travel. Under normal conditions the tubes are one-way roads, the same as a dual carriageway. However, if one tube is closed the open tube may become two-way and special Traffic control and signs will be used to guide you. You must not overtake or drive in the right-hand lane since in such circumstances it would be the oncoming lane.

Be prepared for any diversions and the unexpected.

In a 'Tunnel area' you must not

  • Use headlamps on main beam.
  • Use a horn.
  • Drive less than 25 km/h in normal Traffic.
  • Cross or drive on 'Double white' lines.
  • Make a U-turn.
  • Reverse.
  • Push a vehicle either by hand or any other way.
  • Drive a vehicle without enough fuel to pass through the tunnel.
  • Drive a bus, coach, medium or heavy goods vehicle or tow another vehicle in the right-hand lane.
  • Drive a vehicle where your view to the front or sides is likely to be blocked.
  • Carry passengers on the outside of a vehicle or seated so that any part of the body hangs over the sides or rear of the vehicle.
  • Stop except in an emergency. ( for example, to prevent an accident ), when your vehicles breaks down or are signalled to stop by a Police Officer or Tunnel Officer, by an emergency Traffic sign, by a flashing red light signal or to pay a toll.
  • Get out of a vehicle except in an emergency or to fetch help.
  • Change a tyre or wheel, refuel or repair a vehicle.
  • Allow an animal to enter the area other than in a vehicle.
  • Allow an animal to leave a vehicle.
  • Drive a vehicle carrying dangerous goods listed as 'Category 1, 2 or 5 goods' under the Dangerous Goods ( Classification) Regulations.
  • Enter or exit on foot except in an emergency.

No vehicles carrying dangerous goods

No vehicles carrying dangerous goods

Emergencies and breakdowns

See 'Emergencies' at the back of this book.

Use the emergency telephone to contact tunnel control and wait for the arrival of the tunnel patrol.

If you are involved in a Traffic accident do not move your vehicle.

If your vehicle breaks down in the tunnel stop in your lane.

If there is a fire, stop and sound the fire alarm or use the emergency telephone. Removal of fire extinguishers will set off the fire alarm, except in the Cross-Harbour Tunnel where breaking the glass will sound the alarm.

Emergency telephones are connected directly to tunnel control. Fire alarms and fire extinguishers can all be found on the walls on both sides of a tunnel.