14:17 Wed 02nd Jun 2010 |

The Automobile Association (The AA) is an iconic brand associated with road safety. The company provides car insurance, driving lessons, breakdown cover, loans and motoring advice. The AA is known for championing the motorist and has over the years campaigned for the rights of the car driver.

New penalties and fines for breaking the speed limit and for reckless driving were introduced in 1904 as well as a requirement to display a registration plate and driving licences as an attempt by the government to control the driving public.

The AA was formed in 1905 by a group of motoring enthusiast to help motorists avoid police speed traps. In the following three years the AA erected thousands of roadside warning signs, sent out the first AA patrols (using bicycles) in order to warn motorists of police speed traps ahead and published the AA Members' Special Handbook, a list of nationwide agents and mechanics.

The AA was frequently successful in defending their members against evidence from primitive speed traps that The Road Traffic Act 1930 removed the 20 mph speed limit. The AA also protested about post war petrol rationing and this was repealed in 1950.

Other AA campaigns include the compulsory wearing of seat belts, and the introduction of lead-free petrol.

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