This post is going to sound very similar to yesterday’s, so apologies for repeating myself.
So the latest headline-grabbing wheeze from the government, whose answer to everything is to legislate, legislate, legislate, is to up the prison sentence for motorists who kill people while using their mobiles when driving.
Prison sentences have been available for some time for people causing death by reckless/careless driving. It was interesting to see a woman jailed last week for killing a woman on the motorway; she was over the drink drive limit, & texting on her mobile while travelling at 95mph when she killed someone. She got, I think, six years which was a pretty high sentence for this type of incident.
So the new guidelines are suggesting a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.
Do we think the woman sentenced last week, wouldn’t have done it if she’d known she could have gotten 14 years rather than 6, would it have made the slightest bit of difference? No. Because when she did that she didn’t think she’d get caught, she didn’t not do it, if you see what I mean, because the prison sentence wasn’t high enough.
And like I said yesterday, you won’t deter people from using their mobile phones while reducing the traffic departments, taking traffic officers off the roads & sitting them under ANPR cameras and sticking up thousands of speed cameras which can detect bugger all except someone speeding in a 30 metre section of road. Those people who find it acceptable to break the law need to think there is a realistic chance that they will be caught before they decide to comply with the law. Those who obey the laws have no concern whether the prison sentence is 5 minutes or 50 years.
Stiffer sentences must be combined with proper enforcement.