When I first heard the news that the government were thinking of increasing the penalty points for speeding up to six, I thought "here we go again, more bloody stupid legislation. " But when I got past the headlines, I realised that this could actually be a pretty decent idea. Wait, don't string me up yet!
What the Transport minister Jim Fitzpatrick said was that the worst offenders, such as those doing 45mph in a 30mph zone, could receive six points, but (and here's the good bit) those just drifting over the limit could be in for smaller penalties. What I would like to see is just a fine for those drifting slightly over the limit. I've always believed that adding points to your licence for doing 34 in a 30 is way over the top for what could be a minor lapse of concentration. I must admit an interest in the view I have just put forward, and that's the fact that I have six points on my licence for two of those minor lapses.
In the past I have found it hard to come to terms with the fact that I have received the same penalty for just going over the limit as some idiot boy racer doing twice the limit. If this law hits the idiots hard, and is softer than past legislation on drifters, then it will be for the good of all motorists. Apart from the idiots of course. There is one more thing to consider, and that is the fact that new motorists only have six points to play with in the first two years of driving. This will of course mean an instant ban for any new driver who thinks the road is their very own personal race track.
[Art by Andy Davey, click to enlarge]