Sarah Barth October 15 2017
Drivers who are convicted of killing while drunk, distracted or speeding could face life in prison under new sentencing guidelines drawn up by government ministers.
It brings the sentencing for driving offences in line with manslaughter, with maximum penalties raised from 14 years to life.
Ministers also confirmed that there will be a new offence of causing serious injury through careless driving.
According to the Guardian, last year 157 people were sentenced for causing death by dangerous driving, with a further 32 convicted of causing death by careless driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Dominic Raab, the justice minister, said: “We’ve taken a long hard look at driving sentences, and we received 9,000 submissions to our consultation.
“Based on the seriousness of the worst cases, the anguish of the victims’ families, and maximum penalties for other serious offences such as manslaughter, we intend to introduce life sentences of imprisonment for those who wreck lives by driving dangerously, drunk or high on drugs.
“We will introduce a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving, punishable by imprisonment, to fill a gap in the law and reflect the seriousness of some of the injuries suffered by victims in this category of case.”
The 9,000 consultation respondents were broadly supportive of harsher sentencing, with 70 per cent calling for life imprisonment as a maximum term.
Around 90 per cent of respondents backed the creation of the new offence of serious injury by careless driving.
burtthebike [1106 posts] 21 min ago3 likes
Since almost all offences are prosecuted under careless driving, and courts rarely convict on dangerous driving, this will have zero effect in deterring the worst kind of driving, and that’s the point. The government can pretend that it has listened and can introduce harsh new penalties that will rarely if ever be applied, that won’t make any difference, and certainly won’t make our roads safer.
Cynical posturing and hypocrisy.
Peowpeowpeowlasers [513 posts] 7 min ago2 likes
I’d like to see much less use of “exceptional hardship” when someone has reached or exceeded 12 points. And I’d also like to see lifetime driving bans for anyone who is looking down the barrel of a second bannable offence, or who has totted up more than 12 points in a period of, say, 10 years.
Oh and presumed liability might be a good idea too, since we’re about the only country in Europe who doesn’t currently use it.