Have you been charged with drink driving?
There are five charges for drink driving (Driving with the Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol (PCA)) offences:
- Novice Range
- Special Range
- Low Range
- Middle Range
- High Range
The penalties and periods of disqualification increase from novice to high range. They also increase for each offence if you have previously been convicted for a major traffic offence within the last five years.
For each offence there is an automatic and minimum period of disqualification. The magistrate has the discretion to order a period of disqualification less than the automatic period but not less than the minimum.
If this is your first middle or high range PCA offence or if you have had previous PCA offences within the last 5 years the magistrate is required to make an interlock order.
An interlock order disqualifies you for a set period of time (which is shorter than the minimum disqualification period for that offence) after which you are required to drive a vehicle fitted with an interlock device for a set period of time. An interlock device is a mechanical instrument fitted to your vehicle which is blown into prior starting your car. You must have zero alcohol in your system for your car to start.
Often people do not realise the potential implications of losing their licence until they are before the court. As there is limited public transport in the Newcastle and Hunter region, a drivers licence is often critical to get to and from work. It is therefore important that you ensure you are addressing everything in the legislation that needs to be addressed, and are putting all the relevant information before the magistrate so you can get the best possible result. There may even be a defence. Give me a call and I can assist you with your matter.