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Speeding penalties not adequate deterrent, say drivers

Harsher financial penalties for speeding are still not providing an adequate deterrent according to UK motorists, with some drivers backing installation of mandatory speed limiters as standard.

The harsher speeding penalties came into effect in 2017, introducing a new penalty structure that means drivers convicted of the highest level of speeding can be fined 125-175% of their gross weekly income as well as receiving six points or a disqualification of up to 56 days.

But a recent survey conducted by Venson Automotive Solutions has found 52% of drivers do not believe that the existing penalties for breaking the speed limit are adequate and that 27% of people would like to see a full review of the speeding penalty system.

The research, published for the 2020 Brake Road Safety Week, also found 18% people think speed-limiting devices should be fitted as standard to all cars to remove the risk of offending – the technology is already expected to be mandated on new cars sold in the EU (and the UK too, regardless of Brexit) by 2022 under provisional EU legislation covering a range of new safety features. However, it will be able to be deactivated every time the car is switched off and over-ridden by the driver when accelerating.

Meanwhile, 17% of respondents in the Venson survey think drivers should have a speed limiter fitted for the first two years after passing their test.

The findings have been revealed by Venson as it urges fleet managers and businesses to support the Road Safety Week campaign theme of ‘No need for speed’ and ensure employees  are fully aware of their responsibilities when it comes to speeding.

Simon Staton, director of client management at Venson Automotive Solutions, said: “When a  driver is on the road for work, they represent their company – whether in a company branded vehicle or not. Employees who speed, not only put themselves, other road users and pedestrians at serious risk but also risk legal penalties for their  employer should an accident happen and damage to the company’s reputation.

“As a responsible employer, a strong and well-understood code of conduct for driving whilst on company business should be an important part of the employee induction process, ongoing driver training and company vehicle policy. We would advise fleet managers to adopt strategies that not only create awareness among their company drivers of the consequences of speeding, but also reward good driving habits,” added Staton.

Written by Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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