Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling, has outlined proposed new changes to the current driving bans that are enforced by UK courts. The changes would affect those, in particular, that are banned while they are in prison for the same offence, and could mean that bans will start from when a person is released from behind bars, that bans and sentences will no longer run concurrently, and that courts will be given the power to be able to hand out longer sentences that mean offenders will not be allowed to serve the whole of their ban while they are in prison.
Current law means that many offenders serve the majority of their driving ban while they are in prison, and therefore unable to drive anyway. Critics have hit out at the system, saying that the ban should be a punishment and that if a person is able to walk out of jail and get straight behind the wheel of a car again, then it is pointless even handing the ban out in the first place. There have been a number of cases of this nature that have been brought to the public’s attention, and MPs, families of people killed in accidents, and motoring groups alike have called for a change to the current laws.
Grayling has put forward the proposed changes to be discussed in the House of Lords, in the hope that the new, stricter, and arguably more sensible laws, will act as an even greater deterrent to prevent people from drink driving, or driving dangerously so as to potentially ruin the lives of others. At the very least, it should mean fewer dangerous drivers on the road, and a penalty that prevents the worst driving offenders from being able to get straight behind the wheel of a car again.
One MP, Phillip Holobone, started calling for changes to the law in December of last year, after a man that was convicted of killing a couple while driving over the alcohol limit was sentenced to an 8 year prison and 10 year driving ban that ran concurrently. He even argued that a lifetime ban would not be unreasonable in these circumstances.