Did you know, that under section 83 of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management) Act in Queensland, that any person driving a motor vehicle on a road without due care and attention or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road or place is guilty of an offence? It does not matter whether or not you had an accident.

Examples of driving without due care and attention

These include (but are not limited to):

  • Eating while driving;
  • Applying makeup while driving;
  • Changing lanes without looking;
  • Running a red light to stop sign;
  • “Brake checking” another car.

The penalty for driving without due care and attention

There is no maximum for the offence varies.

If the person causes the death of or grievous bodily harm to another person and was an unlicensed driver at the time of committing the offence- 2 years imprisonment is the maximum penalty.

If the person causes the death of or grievous bodily harm to another person but was licenced, then the maximum penalty is 1 year imprisonment.

If these aggravating features are absent, the maximum penalty is 6 months imprisonment.

The matter will go before a Magistrates Court. At Court, you are asked if you are pleading guilty or not guilty. If you elect to plead guilty, it means you accept you did drive without due care and attention and the prosecutor will tell the magistrate what occurred, hand up any traffic or criminal history you may have. You will then be given the opportunity to explain to the Magistrate what occurred, what your situation is and why your licence should or should not be disqualified.

A Magistrate will then impose a penalty they view as just and reasonable in all the circumstances.

There is no mandatory minimum period of disqualification for this offence, however the Magistrate can disqualify you from driving for a period of 1 month to an absolute disqualification, depending upon the circumstances of the case.

If disqualified, you cannot apply for a work licence or hardship licence.  Therefore, if holding a licence is a vital element of your job, then the circumstances of same, must be put to the Court at the time of sentence, and in such a way that the court does not impose any disqualification period.

Our team specialise in traffic law. Our role is to sit down with you and work out the strategy that will get you the best possible result. If you have any questions about this article or any other topic of law, please call our team of experts on 1300 066 669.