The guidelines for magistrates covering speeding and sentencing levels have changed for the most serious offences, with a new higher penalty being introduced for those offenders who drive at speeds excessively above legal limits.
Recorded speeds fall into three bands with the penalty for the top band increasing in relation to the seriousness of the offence. Fines for these offenders will have a starting point of 150% of their weekly income rather than the previous level of 100%. For example, travelling at 41mph or more where there is a 20mph limit, 51mph or more where there is a 30mph limit or over 101mph on a motorway, could incur the maximum fine of 175% of their weekly income as well as penalty points or disqualification.
Sentence levels for less serious offences are not changing and the maximum fines allowed by law remain the same, so fines cannot exceed these. The maximum fine for speeding is £1000, unless it takes place on a motorway, in which case it is £2500.
The court also has the right to consider what is termed as ‘aggravating factors’ which can increase the seriousness of the offence and sentences can be adjusted accordingly. Examples of these include; driving a PSV, carrying passengers, towing a trailer and driving for hire or reward.
A spokesman for the Sentencing Council confirmed that driving 1mph above the speed limit is an offence and any tolerances that the police allow for is down to them. He advised that drivers should NOT set speed limiters or cruise control functions above the speed limit to allow for these adjustments as this is considered to be blatantly breaking the law.
The new guideline for speeding offences, can be found by visiting http://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/offences/item/speeding-revised-2017/