If you ignore red Xs on motorways, a big fine and points penalty could come your way.

Road safety specialists GEM Motoring Assist is warning motorists against driving in motorway lanes marked with a red X overhead.

That's because as of this week cameras will be used to catch out motorists in the closed lanes.

The red X lights on motorway gantries is supposed to signal that a lane can't be used, but the signals are often ignored.

The cameras, which went live earlier this week, will snap any driver in the lanes and issue them with a £100 fine and three penalty points on the offender's licence.

Traffic light over motorway shows red X

“Red X signs are often displayed well ahead of motorway incident, as they help ensure that emergency vehicles can reach the incident," said GEM Motoring Assist road safety officer Neil Worth. "Someone might be stranded in that lane, or there may well be emergency or recovery workers assisting at a collision or a breakdown.

“That’s why using a motorway lane with a red X is not only illegal but also very dangerous.”

Red cross above lanes on motorway

GEM’s red X tips for staying safe and legal

  • Never drive in a lane marked with a red X, as this indicates a lane closure.
  • If you see a red X sign ahead for the lane you are using, move across to another lane as soon as it’s safe.
  • The red X can be shown on signs located on the verge of the carriageway or on signs above each lane across the carriageway.