Friday, 19 October 2007

The Right to Drive?

The new driver act has kicked in - and we've all had the phone call from the distraught 18 year old who feels hard done by when they have their licence removed from them.

"But I only got 2 - I was doing 32 in a 30, and the second one was for being on me fone - I thought you had to get six points before you were banned?!"

Hmmm - just in case anyone has not understood the stupidity of the above - let me explain:

Many driving offences carry a different penalty point weighting. It just so happens that a speeding camera fine is usually 3 points, as is talking on your mobile phone. So with those two stupid actions - 6 points and if you passed your test less than 2 years ago - you're back to square 1 - take your test again.

Also - "32 in a 30" - do you think we're thick? You wouldn't trigger a camera until you were going 33, or more likely 35 or above.


I love these phone calls - I'm always polite, and I will always accept someone if they have learnt with me, or if they understand what they have done, and why they shouldn't have, but the ones who are just angry that "everyone's gettin at me - shutup, shutup, oh whateva" can go hang.

Unfortunately, though I personally think this is a great idea - I understand that it has had a very limited effect on road safety.

In fact - it may even have made things worse. People who have been banned start driving illegally. They have got used to driving and had begun to take it for granted, so when it is taken away they decide to continue, not understanding the dangers and life wrecking stupidity of what they are doing.

And this leads me to the main problem with all of this - what can the police do? What do the police do? Surely impounding every car that is driven on the road without insurance, tax, or MOT would go some way toward solving the problem. Then link any release fee directly to the cost of the policing, the impound and the paperwork of the operation (2 coppers - 2 hours, 1 administrator - 1 hour, 1 recovery truck - 3 hours, 1 compound - 3 days, maybe around £500, with an extra £100 per day until someone who is insured for the car itself turns up to collect it!).

Criminals would no longer have cars. This may help the fight against normal crime too just a little!

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