DSL shortlisted for Regulatory Firm of the Year and Jared Dunbar shortlisted for Junior Lawyer of the Year

Posted by Jonny on Mar 31, 2015 in Latest News

Liverpool Law Society has announced  the shortlisted nominees for the 2015 Legal Awards. The aim of the 2015 Awards is to recognise and celebrate the achievements of the Society’s member law firms and individuals who have shown excellence in innovation or service, or made outstanding contribution to legal services. Liverpool Law Society announced that the competition was fierce this year, with more firms taking part than ever before and a large number of submissions being received from a record number of member firms and individuals. The judges have made their decision and we are delighted that Dyne Solicitors has been shortlisted for the Regulatory Law Award. We are also thrilled  that Jared Dunbar has been shortlisted for the Junior Lawyer Award. The winner of each award will be announced at the black tie Legal Awards Ceremony on Friday, 15th May 2015 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Liverpool City Centre. John Dyne said “This is a great achievement for the Practice and Jared Dunbar and a reward for all the hard work and effort that is put in.”


Drugs and Driving

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

It is illegal to drive if either:

  • You are unfit to do so because you’re on legal or illegal drugs;
  • You have certain levels of illegal drugs in your blood (even if they haven’t affected your driving).

Legal drugs are prescription or over-the-counter medicines. If you are taking them and not sure if you should drive, you should ask a medical professional.

If you are stopped by the police and they suspected you are on drugs then they will ask you to complete a ‘field impairment assessment.’ This is a series of tests such as asking you to walk in a straight line. If they think you’re unfit to drive because of taking drugs, you’ll be arrested and will have to take a blood or urine test at a police station. You could then be prosecuted if the test shows you’ve taken drugs.

Police forces have access to new screening equipment to test suspected drug drivers. Officers can screen drivers for cannabis and cocaine at the roadside. They will be able to test for these and other drugs including ecstasy, LSD, ketamine and heroin at a police station, even if a driver passes the roadside check. New devices that can test for a greater number of drugs at the roadside will be developed in the future.

Prescription medicines

It’s illegal in England and Wales to drive with legal drugs in your blood if it impairs your driving.

It’s an offence to drive if you have over the specified limits of certain drugs in your blood and you haven’t been prescribed them.

Talk to your doctor about whether you should drive if you’ve been prescribed any of the following drugs:

  •  clonazepam
  • diazepam
  • flunitrazepam
  • lorazepam
  • methadone
  • morphine or opiate and opioid-based drugs
  • oxazepam
  • temazepam

You can drive after taking these drugs if you have been prescribed them and followed advice on how to take them by a healthcare professional and they aren’t causing you to be unfit to drive even if you’re above the specified limits

Penalties for drug driving

If you’re convicted of drug driving you will get:

  • a minimum 1 year driving ban
  • a fine of up to £5,000
  • up to 6 months in prison
  • a criminal record

Your driving licence will also show you’ve been convicted for drug driving. This will last for 11 years.

The penalty for causing death by dangerous driving under the influence of drugs is a prison sentence of up to 14 years.

Other problems you could face

A conviction for drug driving also means:

  • Your car insurance costs will increase significantly;
  • If you drive for work, your employer will see your conviction on your licence;
  • You may have trouble travelling to countries like the USA.



Britain’s first ‘Safer Lorry Scheme’

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

Britain is introducing a Safer Lorry Scheme in London which will ban all unsafe HGVs from using any road in London.

From 1 September 2015, drivers of any non-compliant vehicle will be liable for a £50 Fixed Penalty Notice or subject to fine of up to £1,000. The operator may also be referred to the Traffic Commissioner for further investigation as a result of any driver’s conviction.

The scheme will operate across London, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, covering the same area as the London Low Emission Zone.

All roads in London (except motorways) will be covered by the Safer Lorries Scheme, requiring nearly all vehicles over 3.5 tonnes to be:

  •  Fitted with side guards to protect cyclists from being dragged under the wheels in the event of a collision;
  • Fitted with Class V and Class VI mirrors, giving the driver a better view of cyclists and pedestrians around their vehicles to reduce the chance of a collision occurring.


DVSA publishes new load securing guide for vehicle operators

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

DVSA has published new guidance to help vehicle operators transport loads securely.

The guide, which has been developed with the transport industry, sets out important information such as:

  • Who’s responsible for load securing;
  • The consequences of poor load securing;
  • How DVSA enforces the rules on load securing.

It also gives practical advice about:

  • Loading on different types of vehicles;
  • Carrying different types of loads.

The guide includes videos so operators can find out things like:

  • What DVSA looks for when it stops a vehicle at the roadside
  • How different load securing systems can be used


Abolition of the counterpart to the photocard driving licence: Paper section to be scrapped and replaced by online system

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

From the 8th June 2015, the paper section of the two-part UK driving licence is to be abolished. It will be replaced with an online system that holds the details of all licenced drivers.

The DVLA says that paper counterparts will be invalid and should then be ‘destroyed’.    However, motorists with the old-style paper driving licences, which pre-date the photocard’s introduction in 1998, will not be affected and can continue to use them.

What about operators that need to check their driver’s driving licence?

Haulage companies that rely on the counterpart to check the driving record of their drivers can use a free online Share Driving Licence service. This will be available before the counterpart is abolished.

This new service will be offered in addition to the existing services, but is designed for those who have a business need for real-time access to the information, and may not wish to call DVLA or be in a position to use an intermediary.

However, driving licence information via Share Driving Licence will only be made available with the consent of the driving licence holder.


National speed limit raised to 60 mph for HGV’s travelling on dual carriageways

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

From 6 April 2015, the speed limit for HGVs travelling on single and dual carriageways in England and Wales will increase.

  • The national speed limits for HGVs over 7.5 tonnes, travelling on a single carriageway, will increase from 40mph to 50mph.
  •  The speed limit for HGVs over 7.5 tonnes, travelling on dual carriageways will increase from 50mph to 60mph.

The limits in Scotland are staying the same. European speed limiter requirements also remain unchanged and must be set at 56mph or lower.

The authorities believe that the introduction of the new speed limits will better reflect the need for a modern transport network.


Entering your Plea at Court online?

Posted by Jonny on Mar 30, 2015 in Latest News

Following a successfully pilot in Manchester, the government is launching as service nationally which will allow motorists in England and Wales, who are charged with a summary motoring offence, to enter a plea online.

Drivers charged with minor motoring offences such as speeding or not having insurance wil be able to enter a plea via a secure website. This service will be operational on a 24 hour basis. Last year approximately 4.5 million minor motoring offences passed through the criminal courts.

The Government is also considering whether this service should be available for other low-level offences as it is envisaged to save the country both time and money.

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