The government has this week revealed that it’s considering increasing the maximum fine for motorway speeders to a staggering £10,000.
While we’re dubious of what this actually means for the majority of motorists, TV’s Quentin Willson has told us it could be a way of bullying drivers into accepting fixed penalty notices without appealing unfair fines.
Many driving offences, particularly speeding, are dealt with using a fine of £100 and three penalty points. If the driver disputes this, they could go to magistrates’ court where the fine may be waived, or the motorist might end up even more out of pocket.
In an interview with Motoring Research, Willson said: “It’s the government’s way of saying, ‘don’t bother contesting this fine, if you do you’ll end up in court and it could cost you £10,000’.
“Speed cameras do get it wrong and you’re absolutely within your right to dispute a fine. But the government doesn’t want you to do this, so they’re saying if you do, you’re risking being fined £10,000.”
The government claims that the fines take into account a number of factors – from the severity of the crime, to your ability to pay the penalty.
It’s not just speeders the government’s targeting. Fines will also be increased for crimes from riding a motorbike without a helmet, to non-motoring offences such as being drunk and disorderly in a public place.
Willson added: “I think it’s absolutely ridiculous. It all comes down to there not being enough police on the roads. While I support the fines for things like talking on the phone… if you’re driving along at 3am through some roadworks on an empty motorway and you accidentally go over the limit, is it fair that you could be landed with a £10,000 fine?”
What do you think? Is Quentin right, is the government being harsh on motorists? Or are they simply enforcing larger penalties on those who deserve it? Let us know by commenting below, tweeting us, or leaving us a message on Facebook.