Dangerous driving
Produced in partnership with 18 Red Lion Court
Dangerous driving

The following Corporate Crime guidance note Produced in partnership with 18 Red Lion Court provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Dangerous driving
  • The offence of dangerous driving
  • Elements of the dangerous driving offence
  • Causing injury by dangerous driving
  • ‘Driving’ for these purposes
  • A ‘mechanically propelled vehicle’
  • A ‘road or other public place’
  • The definition of ‘dangerously’
  • Defences to dangerous driving
  • Alternative verdict of careless driving
  • more

The offence of dangerous driving

Dangerous driving contrary to section 2 Road traffic Act 1988 (RTA 1988) is an offence that can be tried in the Crown Court or the magistrates’ court.

Elements of the dangerous driving offence

To be guilty of an offence a person must:

  1. drive

  2. a mechanically propelled vehicle

  3. on a road or other public place

  4. dangerously

Causing injury by dangerous driving

The offence of causing injury by dangerous driving is prohibited by RTA 1988, s 1A.

This is an either way offence.

The elements of the offence are the same as for dangerous driving with the additional element that the driving must cause serious injury. Serious injury means physical harm which amounts to grievous bodily harm for the purposes of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.

‘Driving’ for these purposes

A person is considered to be driving if the vehicle, when moving, is subject to their control and direction.

The driver must be either:

  1. in the driving seat, or

  2. in control of the steering wheel, and

  3. have something to do with the propulsion of the vehicle

If a person is in the driving seat when a vehicle is in motion he is deemed to be the driver and the onus is on him to show that he is not responsible, eg in circumstances in which

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