Attorney-General, Simon Corbell, today introduced legislation into the Legislative Assembly to target high-risk dangerous driving and offer further protection to vulnerable road users.
“The Road Transport Legislation Amendment Bill 2014 was created in response to concerns raised by the Director of Public Prosecutions about the need for an aggravated version of the offence of furious, reckless or dangerous driving”, Mr Corbell said.
“The Bill provides for a higher maximum penalty where a person is convicted of the offence when an aggravating factor is present.
“It also, for the first time, defines what constitutes a vulnerable road user, including pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, riders of animals, users of motorised scooters and users of segways.”
The aggravating factors for the offence introduced by the Bill are:
• failing to comply with a request or signal given by a police officer to stop the vehicle;
• driving while intoxicated;
• driving at a speed that exceeded the speed limit by more than 30%;
• being a repeat offender;
• driving with a person younger than 17 years old in the vehicle; or
• driving in a way that put at risk the safety of a vulnerable road user.
The 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, the person’s driver licence will be 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.
“This Bill targets high-risk driving behaviour that has the potential to have catastrophic consequences.
“The increased penalties reflect how seriously the community regards anti-social behaviour that puts other road users at risk.”