It is an offence to drive in a dangerous manner. Dangerous driving is a criminal offence and one of the most serious driving-related offences in Queensland.
Significant penalties apply for dangerous driving, including fine, disqualification and/or imprisonment. A conviction can also be recorded on your criminal history if you are convicted with this offence.
We recommend that you seek legal advice as soon as possible if you have been charged with dangerous driving.
Dangerous driving means to “operate, or in any way interfere with the operation of, a vehicle at a speed or in a way that is dangerous to the public, having regard to all the circumstances, including
The maximum penalty for dangerous driving is 200 penalty units or 3 years imprisonment. You will also be subject to a mandatory disqualification period of at least 6 months.
If any of the following circumstances applies, the maximum penalty can be increased to 400 penalty units or 5 years imprisonment:
The penalty will increase further if the dangerous operation of a vehicle has resulted in the injury or death of another person.
If you are charged with dangerous driving, the following defences may be applicable to you:
If you have some other defences that lead to you not pleading guilty, please do not hesitate to contact Ascent Lawyers to organise an initial meeting with our experienced traffic lawyers.
Please note that it is insufficient to claim that you did not intend to drive dangerously as a defence. This is because intent is not a required element to dangerous driving.
Normally dangerous driving cases are dealt with in the Magistrates Court. Only in certain circumstance, the cases will be brought to the District Court. For example, dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm or death.
There is a possibility that you can be sent to jail even though this is your first time being charged with dangerous driving. However, this will depend on the seriousness of harm and injuries you have caused the other person and the circumstances of the offence. If you are convicted with dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm or death, there is a high possibility that you may face a prison sentence.
The length of imprisonment may increase if you were affected by drugs or alcohol at the time of the offence.
Dangerous driving is classified as a criminal offence and the Court has the power to decide whether or not to record the offence as a conviction.
If a conviction is recorded, it may impact your future visa applications and employment prospects. However, it is possible to ask the court not to record the conviction.
Generally, dangerous driving will attract a minimum of a 6-month period of licence disqualification. The Court will take into account several factors when deciding the length of your licence disqualification.
Please note that you are not eligible to apply for a work licence or special hardship licence which allows you to drive during the term of your licence disqualification. As such, it is important that you are represented by an experienced traffic lawyer to minimise the licence disqualification period.
The answer to this question will inevitably be “Yes”. Dangerous driving is one of the most serious traffic offences in Queensland and also a criminal offence. The consequences of not having a lawyer far exceed the cost of hiring one.
Having a lawyer to deal with your case may minimise the penalty imposed by the Court. This is a benefit to you as having a criminal conviction can inadvertently affect your employment prospects or visa applications.
Therefore, seeking legal advice from a traffic lawyer from the beginning of your case can save you a lot of unnecessary worries.