Owners of cars used by unaccompanied L drivers could get jail

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Owners of cars used by unaccompanied L drivers could get jail
15:36 Wednesday 14th of February 2018

Motorists who allow their vehicles to be used by unaccompanied learner drivers may be hit with €2,000 fines and could be jailed for up to six months.

The stiff penalties come under strict new laws agreed by the Government this week - but must be passed by the Dail and Seanad.

The vehicles of the motorists could also be seized by authorities as part of a wider road safety clampdown.

Under existing rules, while a learner driver who is driving alone in a vehicle can be prosecuted for putting other people at risk, the person who owns the vehicle is able to escape any punishment.

However, under a new amendment to the Road Traffic Bill, owners will now be prosecuted for failing to secure their vehicle.

If passed, the proposed law will relate to cars, vans, farmyard vehicles and commercial vehicles.

Owners, if convicted will face €2,000 fines if they allow a learner driver to use their vehicle unaccompanied or a potential jail sentence of up to six months.

Latest figures show more than 10,600 fixed penalty points notices were issued to unaccompanied drivers in 2017.

The Road Safety Authority said that of the 12 fatal road crashes involving learner drivers last year, 10 involved unaccompanied learner drivers, in line with previous years.

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