Section 2 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 defines dangerous driving as driving that has fallen far below the standard to be expected of a reasonably competent driver and that it would be obvious to the reasonably competent driver that it was dangerous.
Usually this relates to driving standards but it can also relate to the circumstances in which the driving took place, for example the condition of a vehicle being used on the road with defective brakes. Examples of dangerous driving might be:
- Aggressive driving
- Driving whilst being fatigued or unwell
- Driving whilst knowing that the car has a serious defect
- Undertaking or tailgating
Dangerous driving allegations can be heard in the Magistrates’ Court or in the Crown Court. Sometimes the Court will make the decision that the case has to go to the Crown Court. If it does not, you will have the chance to choose which court deals with your case. This is a very important decision and it is essential that you take early advice from one of our expert solicitors about which Court is most suitable to deal with your case.
The consequences of being found guilty of dangerous driving are very serious, including the prospect of a lengthy prison sentence, so it is vital to take early advice about your case from our team. We will discuss the defences that are available to you including the use of defence experts to assist your team.
What are the consequences of being convicted of dangerous driving?
If you are found guilty of dangerous driving the maximum sentence is dependent on which court hears your case.
- Magistrates’ Court – If you are sentenced in the Magistrates Court, you could receive a prison sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of £5,000.
- Crown Court – The Crown Court has a wider sentencing power which means that they can impose a prison sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of £5,000
In all cases a conviction for dangerous driving will mean the imposition of an automatic driving disqualification of a minimum of 12 months and an order that you will have to re-take your driving test before your driving licence is returned to you.