Fixed fines for careless drivers

* Police to crackdown on careless driving * On-the-spot fines and licence points * Will free up police and courts...

11 May 2011
Fixed fines for careless drivers

Drivers that tailgate, undertake or cut up other drivers could face fixed fines of up to 100 under plans to give police new powers to clamp down on careless driving.

Along with the fines, the Government's plans mean careless drivers will have points added to their licence and there will be greater use of driver training courses for those issued with on-the-spot penalties.

There will be a crackdown on drug-driving, too, and loopholes that allow people to escape drink-driving charges will be closed, said the Department for Transport.

Banned drivers will be forced to retrain and possibly be forced to take another test before they regain their licence. Courts will also be encouraged to make more use of powers to seize vehicles for the most serious offences.

Transport Secretary Philip Hammond will outline these measures in a written statement to Parliament today as part of the Government's strategy to make roads safer.

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Read reaction to this story from interested bodies - and tell us what you think about the use of on-the-spot fines.
Click here to read moreExplaining how the fines would work, Hammond said: 'We're talking about the use of fixed penalty notices of the type that are currently used for speeding fines, but broadening out that focus on speed alone, to look at all the other examples of poor driving skills.

'This will allow police chief constables to redeploy scarce resources to focus on the most dangerous driving behaviours.

'Drivers issued with on-the-spot fines will still have right to appeal, to go to court and contest the charge. There will also be a much greater use of education courses to those drivers issued with fixed penalty notices.'

A DfT spokesman said: 'The strategy will focus on cracking down on the really reckless drivers through more efficient enforcement.

'By giving the police the tools to deal with those who present the greatest danger to others, we can make our roads even safer.

'While seeking to do everything possible to tackle the most dangerous drivers, the strategy will also help the responsible majority to improve their driving. This is the Government's twin approach to improving road safety.'