AIBU about being drunk / using a mobile phone while driving

(37 Posts)
IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 13:07:16

Would you get behind the wheel of a car when drunk? Did you know that people have been given jail terms of up to 14 years for killing someone while driving drunk?

Would you use a mobile phone or send a text while driving a car? Did you know people have been given jail terms of up to 14 years for killing someone by texting while driving?

AIBU to think that it is the act of texting, or the act of driving drunk that is the responsibility of driver, and that whether or not their actions actually kill anyone is nothing to do with their judgement in making the original decision to drive dangerously?

AIBU to think there should be an offence of 'attempted death by dangerous driving' that also carries a jail sentence for anyone who deliberately engages in dangerous driving regardless of the fact they happened to have escaped without causing a terrible accident through no particular effort on their part?

Togaparties Wed 07-Sep-16 13:11:59

How fucking ridiculous. Are you going to charge anyone caught carrying a knife with attempted murder?

is this for a piece in the daily fail?

OnionKnight Wed 07-Sep-16 13:16:39

That'd be insane.

Theresa May would love you OP.

MyKingdomForBrie Wed 07-Sep-16 13:17:41

With you til the last paragraph. Obviously both things are incredibly dangerous irresponsible and stupid things to do but no you can't make up imaginary charges to level at people.

c3pu Wed 07-Sep-16 13:30:01

If you pick up a knife you are not guilty of attempted assault with a deadly weapon or whatever.

sparechange Wed 07-Sep-16 13:39:54

There is also an offence of causing death by dangerous driving which could be from killing someone while speeding, but you can't put someone in jail for 'attempted death by dangerous driving' just for speeding

It is all a bit 'Minority Report' pre-cogs to go down this sort of road, isn't it...

FrancisCrawford Wed 07-Sep-16 13:44:08

Nope, that would be silly.

If you wanted to argue for different penalties for drunk driving or using a mobile while driving, then please go ahead.

AyeAmarok Wed 07-Sep-16 13:50:00

I see your point OP, if you're referring to the case that was in the news (and the R4 Today Programme's 810 interview this morning?). But no, I don't think that would work.

I think the sentences for actually doing damage to someone should be a lot higher (especially for the guy with 8 previous convictions for driving using his phone, WTF as that previous magistrate thinking?).

Maybe more enforcement of not using a phone would be better than jailing people who are lucky an don't cause an accident.

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 13:50:32

hmmm...I guess I don't understand why the punishment for doing something that could easily cause death - like firing a gun into a crowed room - should depend on whether or not you actually killed someone.

If you are carrying a knife, the chances of killing someone are incredibly low, so there is an expectation that doing this is generally safe. If you happened to kill someone just carrying a knife around (entirely by accident) people wouldn't want to throw you in jail anyway.

So, how likely are you to kill someone driving while drunk? If it is very unlikely, then why do we punish the people who actually do kill someone so harshly? They were just extremely unlucky?

Alternatively, why not punish anyone who deliberately does something with a high risk of killing someone more harshly?

Why the element of random dumb luck in all this?

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 13:51:20

aye yes...although jailing anyone caught using a mobile while driving for a bit would actually stop people from doing it...which would be a good thing!

KondosSecretJunkRoom Wed 07-Sep-16 13:52:33

On a similar thought but a different offence the crime of 'attempted murder' shouldn't be a lesser crime given that it only indicates a lack of competence by the criminal.

KondosSecretJunkRoom Wed 07-Sep-16 13:54:56

So, I kind of agree, given that only good luck comes between this twattish driving behaviour and a fatality.

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 13:58:25

kondos well exactly! But the punishment for attempted murder is not hugely different to murder. You will get serious jail time for attempted murder.

The difference between two people who both make the identical decision to text while driving, one of whom hits a child and one of whom is stopped by police is: 14 years in jail versus a fine and 3 points?

I think the penalty should be broadly speaking comparable, where the intent was comparable....

LurkingHusband Wed 07-Sep-16 14:02:46

On a similar thought but a different offence the crime of 'attempted murder' shouldn't be a lesser crime given that it only indicates a lack of competence by the criminal.

In theory, it doesn't ... it's the same penalty:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attempted_murder

In England and Wales, as an "attempt", attempted murder is an offence under section 1(1) of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 and is an indictable offence which carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment (the same as the mandatory sentence for murder).

KondosSecretJunkRoom Wed 07-Sep-16 14:06:33

Ah, well, I suppose if the penalty is the same it's fair enough <gets off high horse>

sparechange Wed 07-Sep-16 14:34:58

If you are carrying a knife, the chances of killing someone are incredibly low

It could also be argued that statistically, the chances of killing someone while on your phone is low. Look at the stats from before using a phone was banned...
That isn't to say it is right, and it is a good thing the law was brought in to make roads safer for everyone.

But you are being totally hysterical in assuming there is a near-certain chance of death to other road users every time someone picks up their phone.

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 15:52:11

spare I am not assuming there is a huge chance of death by mobile phone driving at all.

My point is that two people who decide to use a mobile phone while driving in the same sort of circumstances should get approximately the same punishment even if one of them is just pulled over, while the other one kills someone. They both made the same decision to do something risk and illegal. The consequences beyond that decision where out of their control.

LurkingHusband Wed 07-Sep-16 16:00:11

Personally, I would happily confiscate the car from anyone caught using a mobile device while driving. Bearing in mind we have gone from people making calls while driving, to people engaged in full-blown email/Facebook discussions while driving.

And if confiscating the car is too much for some to stomach, how about confiscating the phone ?

I speak as someone who has just seen the 3rd van driver today drive past my window with a phone clamped to their ear.

Giratina Wed 07-Sep-16 16:04:15

Where's the money coming from to build all the extra prisons that would be needed if your law was implemented then OP?

strawberrybootlace Wed 07-Sep-16 16:07:50

I completely agree, Lurking

LurkingHusband Wed 07-Sep-16 16:11:18

Where's the money coming from to build all the extra prisons that would be needed if your law was implemented then OP?

From flogging the 0-2 year old BMWs and Audis (other makes are available) you confiscated from the ignorant twats who insist on using their phones while driving ?

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 17:05:55

lurking you have absolutely nailed the incongruency for me.

Apparently seeing someone on a mobile phone isn't serious enough to warrant impounding their car (actually it is, I mean in the current law it isn't) and yet if someone steps out in front of you while you are phoning/texting then suddenly you are due 14 years in prison?

There is no difference between a knob on a mobile who doesn't have a kid step out in front of them and a knob on a phone who does.

So I would vote for car and phone removed and destroyed in all cases.

My guess would be that this would prevent people from doing it.

IceBeing Wed 07-Sep-16 17:07:04

giratina my hope would be that knowing getting caught would put you in jail would actually STOP people from doing it, rather than fill up prisons...but you may be right...

AyeAmarok Wed 07-Sep-16 17:10:22

Yes I'd be up for phone being removed and car being impounded in all cases, whether they caused an accident or not.

And maybe a temporary driving ban of a month. Something significant enough to be a massive inconvenience.

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