Wednesday, 23 April 2014

St George, Dragons and Road Rage!

Guest Blog by Ali Ashworth

St Georges’ day is our opportunity to celebrate all things British, and our opportunity to celebrate our patron saint, who famously slew a dragon….. Or so they say.

One of the oddities which the English are renowned for is our nervously polite disposition, and common sense of courtesy. Who has not had the experience of being brushed past in the street from another person and then actually said “sorry” themselves?

Unfortunately this polite disposition is sometimes tends forgotten as soon as people turn on their engines.
In the days when St George was alive, the only method of transport was by foot or on horseback. Both left you pretty exposed. However these days, many people get into their cars feeling protected, and free to be as rude or aggressive as they want without consequence.

However, letting your “inner dragon” take hold when you’re behind the wheel can in fact have some very serious legal consequences.

Many of us have witnessed a driver being cut up, or pulled out on by another driver. On many occasions the drama ends with a beep of the horn. However if a matter is allowed to get out of hand, the all-out war with drivers gesturing at each other and shouting, and more seriously making dangerous manoeuvres, could not only put their own safety at risk but also the safety of others.

Image courtesy of

Careless, inconsiderate or even dangerous driving are the likely charges which will follow if the driver(s) are caught by the police driving aggressivley as a result of some form of road rage, with penalties ranging from points to a potential disqualification and a custodial sentence.

This problem is so well recognised that there is even a specific offence which deals with this type of road rage where an injury results as a consequence; wanton and furious driving.  If your driving is so reckless that it should have been foreseeable to you that harm would be a possible result, then you will be on your way to Crown Court, looking at a possible prison sentence of up to two years in the most serious cases.

It is hard to imagine a scenario of a driver aggressively tailgating, or repeatedly breaking in an attempt to “teach another driver a lesson” where possible harm would not be a foreseeable result.

Whilst the majority of drivers move on quickly after they’ve been irritated by another driver, there are still far too many who think that we are back in St George's era; where charging after someone who had wronged them was an acceptable solution to resolve their anger.

With the potential penalties in mind, along with a celebration of the polite idiosyncrasies which make us British, it would be nice if from now on, the only dragons which we faced were the ones in the story books, not on the roads.

If you are accused of a motoring offence that could see you lose your licence, or in extreme cases, lose your liberty! Our team of motoring law experts will be able to guide you through options that you may not know to be available and bring relief to what we understand can be a very trying time. Give us a call on 08000 85 27 84 for a no strings chat if you are in need of advice on any motoring matter.

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