This is a very serious charge for the accused person. The consequences following upon conviction can be very grave and include disqualification from holding a driving licence for 12 months, requirement to resit the extended driving test, a longer disqualification depending on how dangerous the driving actually was and previous record. Imprisonment is an option open to the Court (a 2 year sentence of imprisonment is possible).
For someone to be convicted the Crown must prove:-
a). the standard of driving falls far below what would be expected of a reasonable and competent driver
b). that it would be obvious to such a driver that the manner of driving is dangerous
The vehicle itself is in a dangerous condition and the driver is aware of it.
Here ‘dangerous’ is referring to the danger of injury to a person or substantial damage to property.
Remember it is the potential for injury or damage that is the measure even if no injury or damage occurs.
The circumstances can vary greatly where this charge applies. Speed can be a factor but is not necessary to constitute the charge.
Defences to Dangerous driving
A driver can be charged with dangerous driving after being observed driving with apparent recklessness but he could have a reason which amounts to a defence. For example, he could be faced with a real emergency which excuses his conduct such as duress or mechanical failure which could not have been anticipated.
As can be seen from the definition, the test for the court to convict of dangerous driving is a high one and the court might be persuaded that conviction for a lesser charge (even with special reasons for not disqualifying) might be appropriate.
Despite the gravity of this charge we have found our success rate to be very high. This is because of the high standard of proof applied by the court as well as the defences which can be brought to bear. Careful assessment of your case and your circumstances are essential. For best advice if you are facing this charge, contact us today on 0141 334 2265.
“My life would have changed forever if I had been convicted. I faced the loss of my job, loss of my family and imprisonment but thanks to Jim Bready my innocence was established.”
Glasgow High Court – Mark D – Not Guilty after trial (Dangerous Driving)