Health

North Cyprus asks , What is ‘Dangerous driving’?


By Chris Elliott……..

We all will have opinions of what is dangerous driving from the experiences we have of driving in the TRNC and I will give an experience I had recently.

stop-dangerous-drivingNow I am in a side road wanting to turn right into a major road and on my right stands a supermarket on the corner and customers had parked their cars outside it in both the side road and main road.

I had slowly starting to move my car forwards noting traffic coming from the left but of course vehicles coming from the right to a point where I am about half a meter from the white line in the centre of the road when a white BMW 4 x 4 comes at me from the right and passes in front of me on the wrong side of the road.

Apart from a dangerous manoeuvre what advantage stop-policein time did that driver gain apart from time saved by not stopping for me and if he had crashed into me or another vehicle who was at fault?

So there we have it, we all think we drive correctly but just look at the following facts which are quoted from the UK Crown Prosecution Service website click here and perhaps we should all think again.

 

What is ‘Dangerous driving’?

The following is:

A person drives dangerously when:

  • the way they drive falls far below the minimum acceptable standard expected of a competent and careful driver; and
  • it would be obvious to a competent and careful driver that driving in that way would be dangerous.

Some typical examples from court cases of dangerous driving are:

  • racing, going too fast, or driving aggressively;
  • ignoring traffic lights, road signs or warnings from passengers;
  • overtaking dangerously;
  • driving under the influence of drink or drugs, including prescription drugs;
  • driving when unfit, including having an injury, being unable to see clearly, not taking prescribed drugs, or being sleepy;
  • knowing the vehicle has a dangerous fault or an unsafe load;
  • the driver being avoidably and dangerously distracted, for example by:
  1. using a hand-held phone or other equipment
  2. reading, or looking at a map
  3. talking to and looking at a passenger
  4. lighting a cigarette, changing a CD or tape, tuning the radio.

What is ‘Careless or inconsiderate driving’?

A person drives carelessly or inconsiderately when the way they drive falls below the minimum acceptable standard expected of a competent and careful driver.

Some examples of careless driving are:

  • overtaking on the inside;
  • driving too close to another vehicle;
  • driving through a red light by mistake;
  • turning into the path of another vehicle;
  • the driver being avoidably distracted by tuning the radio, lighting a cigarette etc.

Examples of inconsiderate driving include:

  • flashing lights to force other drivers to give way;
  • misusing lanes to gain advantage over other drivers;
  • unnecessarily staying in an overtaking lane;
  • unnecessarily slow driving or braking;
  • dazzling other drivers with un-dipped headlights.

What other driving offences apply in cases involving death?

Other driving offences causing death include:

  • causing death by driving when unlicensed, disqualified or uninsured;
  • wanton and furious driving – this old offence is used when traffic laws don’t apply. For example, when not on a road or public place, or when the vehicle is not motorised.

How heavy are the penalties?

The penalties depend on which of the following offences may have been committed:

  • Causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs (Section 3A Road Traffic Act (RTA) 1988)

Penalty: 1 to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine, or both; and disqualified for a minimum of two years;

  • Causing death by dangerous driving (Section 1 RTA 1988)

Penalty: 1 to 14 years in prison, and disqualified for a minimum of two years;

  • Causing death by careless, or inconsiderate, driving (Section 20 Road Safety Act 2006)

Penalty: Up to 5 years in prison, and disqualified for a minimum of one year;

  • Causing death by driving: unlicensed, disqualified, uninsured drivers (Section 21, Road Safety Act 2006)

Penalty: Up to 2 years in prison, an unlimited fine, or both; and disqualified for a minimum of one year;

  • Murder or manslaughter

Penalty: Up to life-imprisonment, and disqualified for a minimum of two years.

Stop Dangerous Driving in the TRNC!

Gavel and hammer image

 

4 replies »

  1. Hi Chris, Your definitions and penalties look very much like those applicable in the UK, not in North Cyprus. In my experience, there is one key law that is always applicable in North Cyprus: ” If you are a British expat, or a visitor using a UK driving licence, and you are in a collision with a vehicle driven by a Turkish or Cypriot national, then you are always at fault”. Any comments?

    • Hello Chris thanks for you comment and you have asked for my reply which is as follows.

      If you had read the article and understood it completely, you will have realiised that I am in fact quoting from the UK CPS regulations etc and I even give a link to their website for further reference.

      As for your claim that expats will always be penalised if they are involved in an accident, that is your opinion and far from the truth as I have had the experience of having a collision involving a local and the police found the other party responsible and there are many more cases like that.

      You mention driving on a UK driving licence but whilst visitors can do this for 90 days, those that decide to stay here as temporary residents, if they then have an accident and have not obtained a TRNC driving licence, then they may well be in for a big shock. Perhaps that’s the cases you are referring too.

      This then should clarify the facts your were seeking.

      • Hi Chris,

        Many thanks for your comments. The cases I referred to (fortunately not my own) were British drivers who are resident and have TRNC licences. The two cases both left them feeling very disadvantaged by the accident handling process by the local police, particularly in the way that blame is apportioned. I myself drive on a UK licence in Cyprus, but have never overstayed my 90 day visa.

      • Hello Chris,

        Thank you for now confirming that the previous opinion you quoted was not yours!

        In my experience,strong, there is one key law that is always applicable in North Cyprus: ” If you are a British expat, or a visitor using a UK driving licence, and you are in a collision with a vehicle driven by a Turkish or Cypriot national, then you are always at fault””

        Your latest comment now clarifies that the opinion you quoted is that of others but the factors have not been specified as to why they feel disadvantaged.

        “The cases I referred to (fortunately not my own) were British drivers who are resident and have TRNC licences. The two cases both left them feeling very disadvantaged by the accident handling process by the local police, particularly in the way that blame is apportioned.”

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