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Careless Driving

John Sutton

A person commits an offence if they drive a motor vehicle “carelessly”.

“Carelessly” means that the person was driving without “due care and attention”. “Due care and attention” is held to be the “degree of care and attention which a reasonable and prudent driver would exercise in the specific circumstances.”

An example of what would be classified as “careless” could be where a driver collides at a slow speed with another car as a result of having their attention distracted away for a moment eg a rear end collision in a traffic jam. Such driving does not satisfy the standard of a reasonably prudent driver but falls short of being objectively “dangerous” as with other offences listed in this section.


“Careless driving” is heard summarily in the Magistrates Court. The maximum penalty is a fine of $1,500.00.

Contact Armstrong Legal:
Perth: (08) 9321 5505
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555
Melbourne: (03) 9620 2777
Brisbane: (07) 3229 4448
Canberra: (02) 6288 1100