The summer holiday period is generally marked by poor driver behaviour. RMB Lawyers Criminal Law division explains the Traffic Offenders Intervention Program:
The Traffic Offenders Intervention Program which operates through the NSW Local Court system is designed to re-educate traffic offenders and ensure that they become more responsible drivers.
In practical terms, it is usually people who have been charged with drink driving or other safety-related traffic offences who may be ordered to attend this program.
People completing the program are issued with an education certificate, confirming that they have attended the course.
The course is conducted through a number of education sessions, which are designed to increase a driver’s understanding of their legal social obligations as a road user.
The course covers issues like the safety impact of offences, the perspectives of Police, Ambulance and other Emergency Services on road safety and road trauma, the perspectives of victims of road trauma, the effects of driving of drink-driving and drug-taking on a driver’s ability to control a motor vehicle, legal information, motor vehicle maintenance, driver behaviour and speeding.
There is no doubt that the course makes clear to participants the responsibility of driving a car and the potentially fatal consequences of poor driving behaviour.
Often the Court will look positively at someone who has attended the course when considering what punishment they should receive for driving offences.
The Court would normally allow people time to attend the course and obtain their qualification.
The statisticians tell us that we need to have full concentration to ensure that we drive in a safe manner. In modern society, people are affected by lapses of concentration and an inability to drive due to one or more of a combination of:
- Consuming alcohol
- Taking illicit drugs
- Taking their eye off the road, for example when using a mobile phone or even texting while driving.
Indeed, the NSW Government in November announced it would be introducing special cameras to detect drivers illegally using mobile phones.
Courts will continue to punish poor driving behaviour through fines, licence disqualification and other measures, while re-education of offending drivers is a sound investment in hopefully improving their behaviour when they are again allowed to get behind the wheel.