Evaluation

Title: Evaluating fixed penalty notices for careless driving offences

Organisation: Ipsos MORI and the Hallam Centre for Community Justice, Sheffield Hallam University (on behalf of the DfT)
Date uploaded: 20th September 2017
Date published/launched: August 2017

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Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) for careless driving came into effect in August 2013. This intervention granted the police autonomy to respond to predominantly (but not exclusively) low level driving offences which may have previously been referred to the courts. It has expanded the scope of FPNs to a greater range of driving offences (previously applied to offences such as speeding, parking offences and seat belt offences).

The broad policy objectives of the reformed framework were:
To increase the effectiveness of enforcement of penalties for careless driving offences.
To increase take-up of remedial driver training courses among offenders.
To reduce careless driving offences through increased enforcement and thus
improve road safety.
To reduce administrative and time and cost burdens for the police and court services in enforcing sanctions for careless driving offences.

The overall aim of this evaluation is to understand and measure the effectiveness of the Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) for careless driving offences since its introduction. In particular, the evaluation focuses on the impact on the police, the courts, road users and offenders.

The evaluation aims to establish whether policy objectives have been met by using a number of research and analysis strands, including primary data collection and analysis of secondary data provided by a range of sources.

The key research questions which the evaluation sought to address and around which this report is structured - were as follows:
I. Effectiveness of the intervention on enforcement, including take-up of remedial driver training courses
II. Changes in driver attitudes and perceptions of their behaviour on the roads
III. Impacts on the level of bureaucracy and burden on individual police forces and
courts

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