Charged with a dangerous driving offence?
If you have been charged with a dangerous driving offence, this will undoubtedly be a confusing and stressful time, especially considering the potentially far-reaching consequences for your future.
This is why it is important to have the support and guidance of an experienced motor offence solicitor if you have been charged with dangerous driving.
The driving defence lawyers at Richard Silver have more than 25 years’ experience in successfully defending motorists who have been accused of a wide range of driving offences, including dangerous driving. Our dedicated solicitors are here to help, so do not hesitate to get in touch today.
Call us on 0161 834 9494 to find out how we can help.
When can you be charged with dangerous driving?
You may be charged with dangerous driving if your driving fell far below the standard expected of a competent and careful driver AND it would be obvious to a competent and careful driver that driving in this manner would be dangerous. This is an objective test, which means it does not matter how you personally perceived your actions. Instead, the test is whether a careful and competent driver in your position would have seen the danger.
Actions which can lead to you being charged with a dangerous driving offence include:
- Racing or competitive driving.
- Driving aggressively, for example changing lanes suddenly, inappropriately cutting into a line of vehicles or driving too close to the vehicle in front.
- Deliberately ignoring road signs and traffic lights.
- Using handheld electronic equipment, such as a mobile phone, while driving. This is not limited to making or receiving calls; it can include other activities such as texting.
- Overtaking when there was no way to do so safely.
- Ignoring the warnings of fellow passengers.
- Driving while dangerously and avoidably distracted, for example because you were reading a map or newspaper, talking to and looking at a passenger, lighting a cigarette or adjusting the controls of electronic equipment such as your satnav, radio or hands-free phone.
- Driving when knowingly suffering from a condition which significantly and dangerously impairs your driving skills, for instance impaired eyesight or an arm or leg in plaster. This can include failing to take medicine prescribed to you if this then means your driving skills are significantly and dangerously impaired.
- Driving when you know you have not had enough sleep or rest.
- Driving a vehicle which you know is unsafe, for example if it has a dangerous defect, is poorly maintained or has been dangerously loaded.
- Driving with disregard for the safety of vulnerable road users such as cyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians, horse riders and the elderly, or showing disregard for potentially vulnerable road users in the vicinity of a school, hospital, pedestrian crossing or residential home.
- Speeding which is especially inappropriate given prevailing road and traffic conditions.
- Performing a seriously dangerous manoeuvre which created a brief but obvious danger. This includes errors of judgement so serious that your driving becomes dangerous, even if only briefly. Examples include failing to stop at a give way sign when you should have done and mistakenly pressing the accelerator instead of the brake.
Causing death or serious injury by dangerous driving
If you are in a collision that results in the death of another person as a result of your dangerous driving, you could face up to 14 years in prison. If your driving causes serious injury to another person, this could result in up to five years’ imprisonment. Because these are such serious charges, it is vital that you get in touch with an experienced solicitor such as Richard Silver. We will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome. Please see our page on Causing Death by Dangerous Driving for more information on this offence.
What are the penalties for dangerous driving?
Dangerous driving is known as an ‘either way’ offence, which means it can be tried in either a Magistrates’ Court (for minor situations) or the Crown Court (for serious offences). There are a wide variety of charges and sentences associated with dangerous driving, so it is best to speak with an expert motoring solicitor to find out the potential consequences in your situation.
As a guide, if you are found guilty of dangerous driving, you could face a fine, up to two years imprisonment, disqualification and an extended driving retest.
Why instruct Richard Silver Solicitors?
With over 25 years’ experience representing clients in a wide range of road traffic defence cases, we are considered experts in this area of law. We have an in-depth understanding of the approach taken by the police, prosecution and courts in response to dangerous driving offences, meaning our lawyers are well placed to provide advice for your particular circumstances and prepare a robust defence case on your behalf.
We are dedicated to protecting your legal rights as well as your livelihood. Therefore, our approach is always to minimise any impact on you and your family, and to achieve the best possible outcome to any charge of dangerous driving.
Contact our Dangerous Driving Solicitors Manchester, UK
We are based in Manchester and represent clients who live across the UK. If you require expert legal advice and representation following a dangerous driving charge, do not hesitate to contact our highly professional and approachable team. Contact our team on 0161 834 9494 or use our online contact form and we will get back to you shortly.