The Hodgman Liberal Government is taking strong action to ensure the scourge of dangerous driving will not be tolerated on our roads.
Draft legislation has today been released that will see the offence of dangerous driving moved from the Traffic Act 1925 to the Criminal Code Act 1924- effectively resulting in a tenfold increase to the maximum penalty for a first offence.
Dangerous driving is a shocking crime that has the potential to end lives and tear families apart, and the community rightfully expects strong penalties to deter individuals from engaging in this destructive behaviour. Making this charge an indictable offence that can be heard in the Supreme Court will better reflect the offence’s seriousness, along with the maximum sentence being increased to 21 years.
This legislation will go hand in hand with other initiatives designed to be tough on crime and keep our roads safe, such as the recently-passed laws cracking down on police evaders.
The legislation will also:
- increase the maximum sentences applicable where an individual is found guilty of negligent driving causing death by one year
- increase the maximum sentences applicable where an individual is found guilty of negligent driving causing grievous bodily harm by six months
- allow alternative convictions for negligent driving causing death or grievous bodily harm where an offender is charged with dangerous driving causing death or grievous bodily harm and the offence is not proved, provided there is sufficient evidence to prove the alternative offence.
The draft bill can be found on the Department of Justice website.