Careless WA drivers could soon face jail time

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Drivers who cause serious injury or death due to careless driving via distraction face stiffer penalties. Photo: Jessica HromasDrivers who seriously injure or kill someone due to carelessness could soon be sent to prison.

The state government’s new legislation proposes careless drivers be handeda fine, licence suspension or jail time.

Examples of careless driving includeschanging the radio, applying make-up, rummaging around in a bag and drinking coffee.

Road Safety Minister Liza Harvey said there were currently very serious penalties for reckless driving anddangerous driving but careless drivers only faced$600 fines.

“People become complacent when they are driving and driving is a very serious activity,” Ms Harvey said.

“Drivingleadingto death and serious injury needs a higher penalty and that’s what we are going to impose.”

The length of prisonterm or how much thefine would be is yet to be decided.

The new legislation is being proposedafter a coroner’s report in 2011 suggested the state government look at increasing careless driving penalties.

Ms Harvey said she was hoping to table the legislation in parliament by the end of the year.

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