Zero tolerance over speeding could lead to taxi and private hire drivers losing their license

National roads policing head, Chief Constable Anthony Bangham, who hit the headlines in January 2018 after calling for an end to the buffer-zone afforded to drivers who exceed the speed linit in the UK, has re-iterated his call for a zero tolerence approach to speeding motorists. 

Mr Bangham cited 15% of all fatal crashes involved excessive speed in 2015.

At the moment, it is generally accepted, although at any given police services discretion, that drivers are given a 10% plus 2 mph leeway over any given speed limit. Chief Constable Bangham wants that buffer zone scrapped, which will see motorists potentially facing a penalty for going 1 mph over the speed limit.

Mr Banghams views are not necessarily shared by other police service leaders, with a number fearing a public backlash over what is seen as yet another attack on the beleaguered motorist. There are also concerns that a zero tolerance approach would be unenforceable.

Drivers travelling 1 mph over the limit could be faced with being forced to attend a speed awareness course, with those who are deemed to be persistent offenders issued with £100 and 3 penalty points. Under the new proposals, those who exceed the limit by a greater margin than 1 mph could face a court summons and a driving ban.

This could potentially see a multitude of taxi and private hire drivers as well as other industries that rely on road transport banned, given the amount of time that they spend on the road.

Interestingly, any money accrued from speeding fines via a camera, goes directly to the government, whereas money accrued from speed awareness courses go straight to any given police authority, this therefore could bring into question the integrity of the whole proposal as it is almost impossible to avoid, or even notice a 1 mph increase in speed. Therefore the whole proposal could be seen as nothing more than a revenue raising exercise.

There has also been criticism of the plans on safety grounds, with the main concern being that drivers may be glued to their speedometer rather than watching the road ahead and turn good drivers into criminals.

Police chiefs have agreed to review the current guldelines, with a view to implementing some changes.

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