Dangerous Driving

S2A Road Traffic Act 1988 states that a person is to be regarded as driving dangerously if:

  • (a) The way he drives falls far below what would be expected of a competent and careful driver; and
  • (b) It would be obvious to a competent and careful driver that driving in that way would be dangerous.

The offence can also be committed if the defendant drives a vehicle in a dangerous condition.

This is a very serious offence which, if convicted, will result in a mandatory minimum 12-month disqualification period (with your licence not being returned until the successful completion of an extended driving test) together with an unlimited fine. There is also a very real risk of a custodial sentence.

You should seek urgent legal advice from our specialist motoring offence team if you are facing proceedings alleging death by dangerous driving, causing serious injury by dangerous driving, dangerous driving, or causing death by careless driving.

A custodial sentence is far more likely for the more severe examples of this offence, and also when there is a suggestion of “road rage”.

Examples of behaviour that could amount to dangerous driving include (this list is not exhaustive):
➢ Excessive speeding
➢ Racing
➢ Dangerous over/under taking
➢ Driving a vehicle in a dangerous condition


Potential defences for dangerous driving are:

  • 1) I wasn’t the driver;
  • 2) The incident alleged did not happen;
  • 3) The standard of driving did not depart from the required standard (any other competent and careful driver would have done the same);
  • 4) The driver did not know that the vehicle was in a dangerous condition, and it would not have been obvious to another competent and careful driver.
  • 5) Duress / duress of circumstance (forced to drive in the manner alleged for fear of death or serious injury).

Given the serious nature of these allegations, and the potential consequences, it is recommended that you instruct an Expert to consider the evidence and advise you on the strength of the case against you at the earliest opportunity.

It may be possible to defend the allegation. If, however, our advice is that you do not have a defence then we will work tirelessly on your behalf to attempt to persuade the CPS to offer an alternative lesser charge (such as careless driving or speeding, for example), or will present mitigation to Court in order to secure the most lenient sentence possible.

  • We are specialist motoring defence solicitors, based in Plymouth in the South West. We provide expert legal advice and representation to clients both across Devon and Cornwall and nationally. Contact a member of our motoring legal team for an initial discussion about any road traffic matter.**