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Speed Awareness Course

By: Tracy Wilkinson - Updated: 27 Mar 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
National Speed Awareness Scheme Speeding

The National Speed Awareness Scheme is an innovative scheme that has been put in place by police forces across the UK to allow motorists caught speeding to complete a workshop rather than be issued with three penalty points and a £60 fine.

Each force appoints a member of the ANDISP (Association of National Driver Improvement Course Providers) to oversee and deliver the courses in their particular area. ANDISP has been established to make sure that such courses have a quality standard and are consistent in their teachings. The format and content of courses may vary from area to area but all have to meet stringent requirements so that they achieve their objective of ensuring the driver understands the dangers of speeding and does not speed in the future.

Interactive Speed Awareness Course Checker

If you think you've been caught speeding recently and want to see whether a Speed Awareness Course might be offered to you as an alternative to penalty points, try our interactive Speed Awareness Course checker:

Who Can go on the Course?

The National Speed Awareness Scheme is offered to a number of offending motorists after they have been Caught Speeding. The decision over whether to offer the course to you, is at the discretion of each police force.

example of a letter offering a Speed Awareness Course
 

Usually the drivers eligible will be those who have exceeded the legal limit but not by a huge amount and each individual police force will decide what their margins are. Approximately two thirds of drivers regularly exceed the urban 30mph limit, a third of them travelling faster than 35mph. Where a pedestrian might sustain survivable injuries if hit by a car at 30mph or below, these are more likely to change to fatal injuries when a pedestrian is struck by a car at 35mph. People caught speeding in the high risk 20 mph zones are very unlikely to be offered a place on a speed awareness course.

If you are invited to attend such a course, you will be given a specific date, time and location and you will need to accept the offer, or decline and take the fine and the Points On Your Licence instead.

What if I Accept But I am Late or Can’t Make it on the Day Specified?

Please make sure that you leave in plenty of time and try to arrive early on the day of your course. If you are late, you will not be allowed to join the class and will forfeit your place. If you cannot attend due to illness, you will need to let the course organisers know at the first opportunity (there will be a contact number on your offer letter) and you will need to provide a doctor's note as evidence. Your case will be reviewed by the police before they come to a decision on whether you will be offered another place or if the offer will be withdrawn.

Do I Have to Pay?

Yes. The course fees are usually between £60 and £100 (depending on which course provider you use) which you pay to the course provider direct – a similar price to paying the fine, although of course, avoiding penalty points can keep your insurance premiums down and save you money in the long run.

What Does the Course Cover?

The idea behind the course is the belief that if a person's attitude and behaviour can be changed, then this is more likely to prevent them from re-offending than simply paying a fine and receiving points on their licence. The course objectives will cover things like:

  • Why the person was speeding
  • To help them understand the consequences of speeding - and that those consequences are the driver's sole responsibility
  • To help them to learn and identify different speed limits and the areas they are likely to apply
  • To ensure they can identify hazards, and how road speed should be altered to accommodate them

How Long Does it Last?

In most cases, the course will be between 4 and 5 hours long and will vary, though it will usually consist of a combination of the following:

  • Classroom based theory training
  • In-car practical training sessions with approved driving instructors (some areas do not include this practical element of the course)
  • Workshops

Do I Have to Take My Own Vehicle?

If your course involves the practical element (which not all the courses offered do), then a training vehicle will be used. It will be provided by the training centre, will be fully insured for course attendees' use and will be a standard, modern vehicle similar to those which most people will have already driven. If your car has been adapted for a special need, then you will need to contact the centre in advance to make necessary arrangements. If you're a motorcyclist, you will be expected to take your own motorbike along.

How Often Can I go on One of These Courses?

Once you have attended a Speed Awareness Course you are not allowed to do another for a minimum of 3 years. Remember also that if you choose to take the speed awareness course instead of penalty points, you must complete the course within four months of the offence.

If I Appeal Against my Offence and am Unsuccessful, Can I Still go on the Course?

No. If you decide that you want to Appeal Against The Offence you are free to do so, but as soon as you do, the offer to attend a course will be withdrawn.

Important Things to Remember:

  • You must take your driving licence with you or you will not be allowed to take your place on the course.
  • You are not going to have to take a driving test but you will be expected to take part in discussions between the group to pass the course.
  • There will be around 15-25 people on an average driver improvement course.

What if I Accept But I am Late or Can’t Make it on the Day Specified?

Please make sure that you leave in plenty of time and try to arrive early on the day of your course. If you are late, you will not be allowed to join the class and will forfeit your place. If you cannot attend due to illness, you will need to let the course organisers know at the first opportunity (there will be a contact number on your offer letter) and you will need to provide a doctor's note as evidence. Your case will be reviewed by the police before they come to a decision on whether you will be offered another place or if the offer will be withdrawn.

Your Time, Money and Behaviour

Any expenses you incur for time you have to take off work, travel to and from the centre, or to pay for child care, will be your own responsibility - there no allowances for reimbursing expenses or facilities for child care.

Bad behaviour during the course will not be tolerated, so if you're rude, disruptive or use bad language you'll be asked to leave - and you won't get your money back. You'll forfeit your right to the speed awareness course and your case will go to court.

More Information on Appealing

If you want to appeal against the decision, this will be done through a magistrate's court and you'll need to write to the police to let them know. Details of how to do this will normally be included in your letter from the police. We have lots more information on Challenging Your Speeding Ticket on this site too.

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Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Was speeding 64 in a 50 will I get to do the awareness course
Claire123 - 27-Mar-17 @ 3:20 PM
lewis - Your Question:
I think I got caught doing 60 in a 50 because I accidentally misread the sign, would I be offered a course

Our Response:
Police guidelines suggest speeds of up 64mph in a 50 zone are eligible for speed awareness courses, so you may be lucky. Do note however, that the offer of a course is entirely at the discretion of the police, so there's a chance that a penalty of 3 points plus £100 fine maybe offered instead.
NoPenaltyPoints - 27-Mar-17 @ 2:00 PM
I think i got caught doing 60 in a 50 because i accidentally misread the sign, would I be offered a course
lewis - 25-Mar-17 @ 11:28 PM
Murch - Your Question:
Hi, I'm on this cause 24th but I have not received any details of where to go or times can you help plz.

Our Response:
We can't help you as we don't know which centre you booked the course with etc.
NoPenaltyPoints - 20-Mar-17 @ 12:46 PM
Hi, I'm on this cause 24th but I have not received any details of where to go or times can you help plz .
Murch - 17-Mar-17 @ 6:08 PM
hammy - Your Question:
I was caught doing 37 in a 30 zone by a manned speed van at the time I was trying to find a safe place to park and went slightly over the limt the reason for stopping was I suffer from c.o.p.d chronic obstructive pulmary deseise poor lungs I could feel an attack of breathlessness coming on and need to stop soon to take inhaler ect where do I stand on this would I have a case for objecting

Our Response:
Not really. Speeding is an offence because it is dangerous to other drivers. Slowing down is the more appropriate response if you're feeling like you need to stop. It's unlikely a penalty would be rejected for the reasons you state.
NoPenaltyPoints - 17-Mar-17 @ 11:09 AM
Kelber - Your Question:
I was recently caught speeding in Dorset. I have been offered a driver awareness course on the notice. I had done the same course when I was caught speeding in Hampshire less than 3 years ago. Am I eligible still to take the course in Dorset?

Our Response:
No, you can only take one speed awareness course within a 3 year period.
NoPenaltyPoints - 16-Mar-17 @ 12:11 PM
I was caught doing 37 in a 30 zone by a manned speed van at the time I was trying to find a safe place to park and went slightly over the limt the reason for stopping was I suffer from c.o.p.dchronic obstructive pulmary deseise poor lungs I could feel an attack of breathlessness coming on and need to stop soon to take inhaler ect where do I stand on this would I have a case for objecting
hammy - 15-Mar-17 @ 3:28 PM
I was recently caught speeding in Dorset. I have been offered a driver awareness course on the notice. I had done the same course when I was caught speeding in Hampshire less than 3 years ago. Am I eligible still to take the course in Dorset?
Kelber - 14-Mar-17 @ 1:23 PM
My girl friend only have provisional license and they got her having 38 on zone 30 she was driving my car without asking me. they send me a letter on my name and I though it was me what shall I do?
Boby - 6-Mar-17 @ 7:24 PM
I hired a car my friend took it and got flashed 59 mph in a 50 mph zone I went to court and they said I was responsible for the car I provided them the name but they said that wasn't good enough So they gave me 6 points for failing to provide details I have had a clean licence for 10 years Would I be able to do the course instead of getting the points Please advise would be greatful
K - 22-Feb-17 @ 6:33 AM
Worried I might have been caught on a speed camera while away from home. If offered a speed awareness course does it have to be sat where the offence occurred or can I ask to sit whereally I live
Bass - 20-Feb-17 @ 4:08 PM
I have been caught doing 48 in a 40 mph area.I have only had my licence for five months - can I be considered for a course?
st - 16-Feb-17 @ 1:51 PM
Gavin - Your Question:
Hi I was caught my a camera doing 44mph in a 30mph zone.Is there a chance I could be offered the course?Thanks

Our Response:
The upper recommended range for a course in a 30 zone is 42mph so it's unlikely you'd be offered one.
NoPenaltyPoints - 14-Feb-17 @ 2:39 PM
Hi I was caught my a camera doing 44mph in a 30mph zone. Is there a chance I could be offered the course? Thanks
Gavin - 13-Feb-17 @ 2:39 PM
zak - Your Question:
I am not too happy I got awarence course I lost papper I called 101 ten times no ones responding what in world should I do I cant lost my licence for no reason can some help me out 07451806086

Our Response:
Calling 101 is not the right thing to do. Look up the website of the police authority(usually the county) where you live or where the speeding offence was and find a number.
NoPenaltyPoints - 9-Feb-17 @ 11:52 AM
Hi My 21 year old daughter was been caught doing 38 in a 30 will she be offered a speed awareness course due to her age.The letter arrived in my name as I am the owner of the car and I was offered one, but wondering if at 21 she will be offered or will it be straight to points on licence.
Debs - 9-Feb-17 @ 8:30 AM
I am not too happy I got awarence course I lost papper I called 101 ten times no ones responding what in world should I do I cant lost my licence for no reason can some help me out 07451806086
zak - 7-Feb-17 @ 7:30 PM
jamal - Your Question:
Hi I got caught doing a 30 in a 20mph zone will I be offered the awareness course

Our Response:
The upper limit for the offer of a speed awareness course in a 20mph zone is 31mph, so might just be offered one. They are however, offered at the discretion of the police.
NoPenaltyPoints - 6-Feb-17 @ 2:04 PM
I recently got speeding ticket driving at 40 on 30mph zone, I already have 3 point on my license, and first awareness course I took sometimes in June 2014, how likely be offered for awareness course again instead of penalt points?
Rubel - 5-Feb-17 @ 10:53 PM
hi i got caught doing a 30 in a 20mph zone will i be offered the awareness course
jamal - 3-Feb-17 @ 11:00 PM
Hello, I'm just wondering what will happen if I get caught speeding again? I attended a course nearly 2 years ago and think I have just been caught again by a parked camera van. What will happen if I have been caught? I estimate I was going a maximum of 65 in a 50
Keira - 2-Feb-17 @ 2:32 PM
Hi I was driving without insaurance on my name but the car have insaurance. Doing 37 in 30. What will be happen?
Amina - 2-Feb-17 @ 2:40 AM
Doing 39 in a 30, received initial NIP from devon & Cornwall, completed the form but it doesn't mention anything about awareness course, would I get offered the course in next communication from them as the letter also said not to send any payment.
Louise - 28-Jan-17 @ 4:41 PM
Hi I've been caught doing 36 in a 30 but a few months ago for speeding was offered a speed awareness but put the wrong date in my diary and missed it so had to pay the fixed penalty. Because I didn't attend the course will I be offered it again because it falls within 3 years of my last offence?. I have also heard of people being doing 2 speed awareness courses within 2 years because they were caught in a different county. Is this true?
Maso - 28-Jan-17 @ 2:39 PM
Hi, I attended a Speed Awareness Course a few years back and I thought it was incredibly valuable, to the point I thought that all drivers, even if they were fined too, should attend the course. I am trying to encourage drivers at the company I work for to be more responsible, and I was looking at the new sentencing guidelines for speeding.It doesn't appear that there are 'fixed' fines anymore, and it relates to pay. I am wondering whether the Speed Awareness Course will still be offered as an alternative to points, or whether it still fits in to the new sentencing system.It would be a great shame to loose it.
Brighton_B - 27-Jan-17 @ 1:46 PM
Hi I have 3 points on my licence for speeding on m25 which was above the threshold l, so was not offered the driver awareness course, that incident occurred 2 years ago and still on my license. So recently got speeding ticket in a 20mph central London zone. I was driving at 31mph just wanted to find if I would be offered the driver awareness course as I have not done one before for the first instance. Can you give me some advice please.
Mo - 25-Jan-17 @ 4:28 PM
My friend was doing 46mph in a 30 zone what is most likely to happen to him
Aqi - 24-Jan-17 @ 7:52 PM
Hi there, I was caught doing 35 in a 30, have had a letter out for to confirm her I was the driver and that details where correct! Do you think they would offer me a course? This is the first time I have been caught also.
Marshall - 21-Jan-17 @ 4:13 PM
Pam - Your Question:
I have lost my photo licence. Can I take another form of ID to the speeding awareness course.

Our Response:
No you must take your driving licence. Apply for a new one online.
NoPenaltyPoints - 16-Jan-17 @ 12:06 PM
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