What is Low Range Drink Driving?
Low Range drink driving or PCA is an offence committed when you are caught driving a vehicle on a public road and test positive to a breath test or a blood test with a prescribed concentration of alcohol (PCA) reading between 0.050 and 0.079.
How serious is a Low Range PCA?
In NSW, all drink driving cases are taken seriously by the court, because drink driving poses a serious risk of injury to members of the public.
If you are found guilty of Low Range PCA, you will have a criminal conviction recorded against you.
The disqualification periods and fines that apply are harsh, and a criminal record can cause significant problems in your everyday life; it can affect your ability to work in certain jobs and to travel freely to some countries.
If you are a first-time offender, however, getting legal advice from an experienced traffic lawyer could ensure that you remain conviction free.
Will I lose my licence?
The major concern for most drivers charged with a Low Range PCA offence is that they will lose their licence.
If you are facing your first offence for drink driving, you have a reasonably good chance of avoiding a conviction and being dealt with under “section 10”.
Getting a “section 10” means that you will not be disqualified from driving, not be fined and you will be able to keep your licence.
Our experienced drink driving lawyers know how to present Low Range drink driving matters in a way that gives you the best chance of keeping your licence.
What are the penalties for Low Range PCA?
The maximum penalty for a Low Range drink driving offence, if it is your first major traffic offence within 5 years, is a fine of $1,100.00 an automatic disqualification period of 6 months. The minimum disqualification period a Magistrate can hand down is 3 months
Penalties for two or more major traffic offences within 5 years
The maximum penalty for a Low Range drink driving offence, if it is your second or subsequent major offence within 5 years, is a fine of $2,200.00 a maximum disqualification period of 12 months. The minimum disqualification period a Magistrate can hand down is 6 months.
Where a second or subsequent offence of this nature occurs within 5 years, then a mandatory minimum period of 12 months using an interlock device will be imposed.
However, if the Magistrate can be persuaded to deal with the matter pursuant to section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act, you will not be disqualified from driving and will avoid a criminal record.
Can I plead “not guilty” to a Low Range PCA?
There are several possible defences to a Low Range drink driving offence
- Breath analysis not taken within two hours of driving. The law requires that the breath analysis occurs within 2 hours of driving.
- The law prohibits the police from demanding a breath test of a driver at their home. Home includes any part of the property.
- You were not the driver. As with any criminal offence, the police must prove it was, in fact, you who committed the offence.
We are here to help
Our solicitors specialise in Drink Driving matters and represent clients in Courts throughout the Central Coast and Hunter Regions. We have the experience and expertise to guide you through the court process from beginning to end to get you the best possible outcome.
If a section 10 is not possible, our drink driving experts can help reduce suspension periods, minimise any fines you may face and help you avoid or minimise a gaol term.
If you have been charged with a drink driving offence, don't take risks with your future. If you need advice from a drink driving lawyer, contact one of our criminal law specialists immediately on 1300 529 444 or fill in our contact form to arrange a free conference with a solicitor today. Contact us now! 24-hour legal advice 7 days a week.
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I was recommend to Fourtree Lawyers from a friend whom also experienced a serious driving infringement. My situation was slightly more serious, being charged with drive while suspended, shared with a reasonably extensive driving record, meant my chances of driving home were minimal. Kevin’s realistic and knowledgeable approach not only prepared & educated me upon all possible verdicts, but also supported me with all possible optimistic outcomes. Kevin’s extensive knowledge of the legal system, combined with the understanding of the Judges expectations, and vast life experience resulted with an outstanding result,...
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Many thanks for yours and Kevin’s assistance. My son was immensely impressed with Kevin’s professionalism and influence yesterday, as I was. I am certain it helped reinforce a few much-needed lessons.
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