Road Traffic Offences

Wed, 12 Mar 2014

No5 Chambers has a number of counsel specialising in defending prosecutions arising from fatal and serious injury road traffic accidents. The latest figures available reveal that there were 1753 fatalities and 193,969 injuries of which 23039 were serious on the road in the UK in 2012. Even in multiple cause cases or where there is a genuine accident the pressure on police and CPS to prosecute particularly in fatal cases is huge. Whilst the trend is down there was an increase in injuries and deaths to cyclists and pedestrians. Each case represents a tragedy for all those connected  - the victims and their families often suffer great hardship and drivers and their families face not only the guilt of having caused a death or a serious injury, but also face prison terms for driving which in many instances is no worse than that which is routinely encountered, but which has contributed to the death of another road user.
 
The usual offences charged are causing death by dangerous driving, causing serious injury by dangerous driving, causing death by careless driving and careless driving.
 
No5 has links with a number of expert Road Traffic Collision reconstruction experts and engineers. In a number of cases subject to the cost and circumstances we have been able to make use of computer simulation programmes demonstrating how the collision could have occurred without blame being attached to the driver. We also have links with relevant medical experts should the need arise.  Complex medical issues occasionally arise in these cases in particular involving drivers who have been involved in accidents involving alleged sleeping at the wheel, diabetic hypoglycaemia and alcohol and drug related incidents.
 
Counsel are on many of the major insurers panels. We are instructed by many of the large firms of specialist insurance solicitors. The outcome of a prosecution will often determine liability and have a significant impact on quantum. Insurers increasingly recognise the importance of expert representation for the insured in criminal proceedings and at inquest. A number of our barristers have substantial experience in personal injury as well as crime and regulatory law.
 
In addition to providing advocacy and advice barristers are available to provide training seminars on specific related subjects should the need arise. In addition our clerks can always put you through to counsel should you want a second opinion on an urgent decision which may need to be taken in the police station. 
 
For further information please contact:
Tony McDaid, Practice Director
+44 (0)845 210 5555

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