2.2 million speeding offences mark six-year high

2.2 million speeding offences mark six-year high
More than two million drivers were prosecuted for speeding last year – a “highly concerning” rise of almost a third on the 2011 figure.

Department for Transport data shows that 2.2 million speeding offences were recorded in 2016, representing a six-year high.

In more positive news, the number of offences for dangerous, careless or drunken driving decreased by around 35% over the same six-year period.

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In 2016, somewhere in the region of 179,000 prosecutions were brought over dangerous, careless or drunken driving, compared to the 276,000 recorded in 2011.

On the same token though, only 1.6 million speeding offences were recorded six years ago.

The findings are particularly pertinent in light of expected changes to the law announced last month which mean that dangerous drivers who kill can now face a life sentence in prison.

Announcing the new punishments, Justice Minister Dominic Raab said: “Based on the seriousness of the worst cases, the anguish of the victims' families, and maximum penalties for other serious offences such as manslaughter, we intend to introduce life sentences of imprisonment for those who wreck lives by driving dangerously, drunk or high on drugs.”

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Director of campaigns for road safety charity Brake, Jason Wakeford, described the figures as “highly concerning”.

He said: “Driving is unpredictable and if something unexpected happens on the road ahead, such as a child stepping out from between parked cars, it’s a driver’s speed that determines whether they can stop in time and, if they can’t, how hard they will hit.

“Last year, excess speed contributed to almost a quarter of all fatal crashes and urgent action is needed. Brake is calling for increased enforcement by the police, a default 20mph limit in all built-up areas and ‘Intelligent Speed Adaptation’, which helps drivers stay within the limit, to be fitted as standard to all new vehicles.

“These measures are essential to lowering the increasing number of needless deaths and serious injuries on UK roads.”

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