Brake Warns Risky Law-Breaking By Drivers Won’t Be Tolerated, As New Fixed Penalty Fines Come Into Force

Brake, the road safety charity, is warning drivers to shape up their act as a new fixed penalty notice for ‘careless driving’, and higher fines for many other offences like speeding and mobile phone use, came in to force on the 16th August.

From today police can stop drivers and issue a ticket on the spot for risky driving such as tailgating or poor lane discipline. Drivers who commit the most serious ‘careless driving’ offences will still face charges in court and much higher penalties.

Fines for most fixed penalty notices for traffic offences such as speeding, mobile phone use and not wearing a seat belt rise from £60 to £100 today, while the fine for driving uninsured rises from £200 to £300.

Brake welcomes the new fixed penalty notice for careless driving and increase in fines, which will help to send the message that risky driving and breaking traffic laws won’t be tolerated. However Brake continues to urge the government to increase fines further, to between £500 and £1,000, to reflect the potentially deadly consequences of bad driving and encourage drivers to take their responsibility on roads seriously.

Read about Brake’s Crackdown campaign.

Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive, Brake, the road safety charity, said: “Driving is the most dangerous thing most of us do on a daily basis, but sadly some drivers remain complacent about the risks and the law. Bad driving causes deaths and life-changing injuries that tear families apart and affect whole communities. All drivers have a responsibility to ensure they aren’t putting others at risk, and are helping to prevent these needless casualties. They can do this by following simple principles, such as slowing down, giving the road their full attention, always belting up, and never driving impaired. We hope today’s changes will help to improve driver attitudes and behaviour. But we are concerned penalties still aren’t nearly high enough to deter all bad drivers and reflect the potentially appalling consequences of bad driving.”

Fines for most traffic fixed penalty notices have not increased since 2000, making them much lower than penalties for many other serious offences.

Police are able to offer educational training as an alternative to endorsement for careless driving, as is already the case for other types of traffic offences, such as speeding.