Failing To Name Driver
Section 172 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 gives the police a power to demand information from you relating to the identity of a driver. If you are the keeper of a motor vehicle suspected to have been involved in an offence, e.g. speeding, you may find yourself receiving one of these notices in the post. Failure to respond, or failure to provide the details requested (if they were in your power to give), is an offence punishable with a fine and 6 penalty points. So, you are likely to be punished more harshly than the driver of the car would have been for the original offence.
The law in relation to this offence is not straight-forward. There are a number of defences open to those accused of not properly responding and the police might be unable to establish that the requirement to provide information actually applies to you.
It may be that you cannot afford to have 6 additional points on their licence. It may be that you tried to find out who the driver was but were unable to. Often it is the case that you sent the notice back but it was never received by the police. Whatever the circumstances, our Road Law Barristers can use their years of experience to find your best possible avenue of defence.
Driverless cars were once the preserve of science-fiction films, but from January 2015 they will be a reality on the UK roads. But what about the law that currently governs road users? How will they apply to driverless cars being used on public roads?
Just because a car can be driven autonomously, this won’t mean that drivers are released from all of their obligations. The term ‘driverless vehicle’ covers all sorts of functions that already exist on many cars already – such as cruise control, automatic braking and self-parking functions.
However, the government recognises that driverless vehicles have implications for the laws and regulations governing public roads. That’s why they are currently reviewing the legal and insurance issues surrounding driverless cars. The results of this review and the regulatory changes required will be announced at the end of the year, so if you’re thinking of getting a driverless car for Christmas, make sure you also get the low down on what new laws will govern you.
There is no doubt that whilst the technological hurdles surrounding driverless cars have been overcome, the legal hurdles are yet to come! So watch this space for details.
AA advice on dealing with a ticket that can lead to a 'failing to name driver' charge - 'Don't ignore it. Failure to respond means higher penalties, and at worst a visit from the bailiffs or a Court summons. The penalty won't go away.'