Road users in the ACT will be better protected as legislation passed by the Legislative Assembly today introduced aggravating factors for drivers who put others in danger.
Attorney-General, Simon Corbell, today welcomed the passage of the Road Transport Legislation Amendment Act 2014, which targets high-risk driving behaviours.
“These changes address the risks posed by furious, reckless or dangerous driving that has the potential to cause death or serious injury,” Mr Corbell said.
“A driver convicted of furious, reckless or dangerous driving offences, where an aggravating factor is present, will face double the maximum penalty that would ordinarily apply.”
The aggravating offence factors introduced by the Act are:
· Failing to comply with a request or signal given by a police officer to stop the vehicle, including evading police.
· Driving while intoxicated by alcohol and/or drugs.
· Driving at a speed that exceeded the speed limit by more than 30%.
· Driving with a person younger than 17 years old in the vehicle.
· Driving in a way that puts at risk the safety of a vulnerable road user.
· Being a repeat offender.
“For the first time the Bill recognises vulnerable road users as a group. They include pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, riders of animals and users of motorised scooters,” Mr Corbell said.
“The new maximum penalty for the offence of furious, reckless or dangerous driving where an aggravating factor is present will be 200 penalty units, imprisonment for two years or both.
“In addition, an individual’s driver’s licence is automatically disqualified for at least 12 months. The maximum penalty for the offence without an aggravating factor in the Act remains at 100 penalty units, imprisonment for one year or both.” Mr Corbell said.