Death by careless driving
We live in a world where transport by motorcar is undoubtedly the most popular and convenient method used by the overwhelming majority of people. The sad reality is that in a world very densely populated with people and motorcars there will be road traffic accidents. In a limited number of these cases there will be injury caused to people and in a few unfortunate cases people will die as a result of these road traffic accidents.
At Trafficlawyer4u solicitors we are highly experienced at dealing with the more serious prosecutions under the Road Traffic Act. If a person faces a prosecution for an offence of this nature it is vital that they receive specialist advice from a dedicated firm of traffic law specialists with significant experience in this field. How the case is prepared and presented at Court will have a very significant impact upon the outcome of the case and any penalty imposed by the Court for any offence of causing death by careless driving or causing death by dangerous driving.
Death by Careless Driving Police Investigation
Following a road traffic accident where there has been a fatality there will be a police investigation. This investigation will be carried out by police forensic/accident examiners. They will examine the road surface, the weather conditions, the conditions of any vehicles involved and of course the police will speak to not only the drivers of all the vehicles concerned but also any potential independent witnesses to a road accident.
This information will then be put together and put before the Crown Prosecution Service who will then make a decision as to whether or not a person should face prosecution as a result of the accident.
If the Crown Prosecution Service believes that the driver of a motor vehicle is responsible for a road traffic accident which has resulted in the death of another person then that person will face prosecution for either causing death by careless or death by dangerous driving.
Death by Careless Driving Offence
The offence of causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving is a relatively new offence having been introduced by the Road Safety Act 2006. Section 20 of this act states that it is an offence to cause death by driving a mechanically propelled vehicle on a road or other public place without due care and attention or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road or place.
A person is to be regarded as driving without due care and attention if, and only if, the way he/she drives falls below what would be expected of a competent and careful driver.
In determining what would be expected of a careful and competent driver regards should be had not only to the circumstances of which such a driver could be expected to be aware but also to any circumstances shown to have been within the knowledge of the defendant.
A person is to be regarded as driving without reasonable consideration for others only if those persons are inconvenienced by his driving.
The offence of causing death by careless driving is an offence which can be dealt with either in the Magistrates Court or the Crown Court. If convicted the Court has the power to impose a period of imprisonment or a fine, or both. In any event the Court must impose a driving disqualification.Contact us today for your Free Initial Consultation on 0800 032 5930
It is very important to note that even if a person is convicted of this offence, although the Court has the power to impose a period of imprisonment, at Trafficlawyer4u solicitors every effort will always be made on a client’s behalf to avoid any period of imprisonment. Although the guidelines indicate that the Court should consider a period of imprisonment, this is by no means a foregone conclusion and there are regular cases when people who have, quite inadvertently been involved in a road traffic accident and faced prosecution, do not automatically go to prison.
In the event of an allegation that it is alleged that a person has driven rather more badly which has resulted in a road traffic accident causing the death of another person, then there may follow a prosecution for the offence of causing death by dangerous driving.
This offence is governed by the Road Traffic Act and is defined as causing the death of another person as a result of driving, the standard of which falls far below that of the careful competent driver.
If a person is found guilty the court will normally impose a prison sentence. A driving disualification is mandatory.
Although the Courts very often impose prison sentences for this more serious offence, it should be noted that in certain circumstances, once again, this can be avoided. Only very recently, lawyers from Trafficlawyer4u solicitors represented a defendant in the Crown Court who pleaded guilty to an offence of causing death by dangerous driving. As a result of the preparation and the mitigation that was put before the Crown Court on the driver’s behalf, that person was not sent to prison and was made the subject of a community order.
This demonstrates the importance of obtaining expert advice in relation to these offences.
Death by Careless Driving Defence
It is very important to note also that, just because the police and the Crown Prosecution Service are of the opinion that a driver is at fault, that is not automatically the finding of the Court. At Trafficlawyer4u solicitors we have extensive experience of defending in cases, which have arisen as a result of a road traffic accident. We have access to highly skilled and experienced forensic and traffic examiners who are able, once again to consider all of the evidence in the case and on many occasions will reach a finding which is different to that of the police. In these cases this information is then put before the Court during the course of the trial and on many occasions an individual will be found not guilty upon the basis that the defence expert evidence is regarded as more persuasive than that of the prosecution.
It is recommended that if the driver of a motor vehicle is involved in a road traffic accident causing serious injury or death, they should contact us immediately. The police will certainly want to carry out an interview of that individual prior to the file being prepared with a view to prosecution. It is essential that the driver in that situation has the benefit of a specialist defence solicitor to make sure they are correctly advised at the outset of any police investigation.
Contact our Lawyers today regarding Death by Careless DrivingFor more information regarding Death by Careless Driving then please contact us on 0800 032 5930 or fill in our online enquiry form and we’ll get back to you.
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