Causing death by dangerous driving

Causing death by dangerous driving

As one would expect by the narrative of the charge, causing death by dangerous driving will attract a higher penalty than causing death by careless driving.

With causing death by careless driving the maximum penalty in prison is just 5 years whereas for causing death by dangerous driving the maximum penalty is 14 years.

Fatal Accident Claim Solicitors

It will attract a Civil Claim for compensation for the fatal car accident claim under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 and the Law Reform Act.  The Police will deal with the criminal charges found under S 1 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 as amended 1991).

Definition of causing death by dangerous driving

The charge of causing death by dangerous driving is where the driver being accused of the charge has ‘fell far below the standard expected of a careful and competent driver.’  The difference between causing death by dangerous driving as compared to careless driving it the word ‘far.’  This suggests something more than a momentary lapse of concentration for instance.  Thus excessive speed well over an above the speed limit for the road or overtaking on a blind bend may attract a dangerous driving charge rather than a careless driving charge.

It is a matter of degree of culpability.

Combined with the driving manner, there may be other factors that can change a charge from death by careless driving to death by dangerous driving and that may be where the driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs (prescription or otherwise).

There is no deterrent from the Courts

Just like the charges for causing death by careless driving, the courts often fail the families left behind after losing a loved one.  Many drivers get away with suspended sentences or serve a fraction of the time in prison.

Further due to the terminology of the charge between both offences, the Police via the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in many cases the lesser charge of causing death by careless driving is preferred due to having a better chance of conviction than the more serious charge.

As a result the driver will often get away will minor punishment which sends out the wrong signal to road users that to drive in a dangerous manner is not a deterrent at all.

Fatal Accidents Claims - The Law

Advice for Bereaved Families

As fatal accident compensation solicitors we are here to help bereaved families who have lost a loved one where the tragic death was caused by dangerous driving or indeed careless driving. Whatever the charge we can help you with liaising with the police, the Coroner and representation with the Coroner to get to the truth.  I

In addition we shall also make a claim against the driver’s insurance company for compensation under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 and Law Reform Act.  Please contact us for advice and information today.

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Posted: November 8, 2016 at 1:33 pm


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