Nearly 5,500 unaccompanied learner drivers have had their vehicles seized in the past two years, according to figures released by the Justice Minister.
Since the Road Traffic (Amendment) Act came into place in December 2018, a total of 5,448 learner drivers had vehicles seized by gardaí, while a further 11,919 fixed charge notices were issued over the same period.
The figures, which are accurate from 2018 to November 19 of this year, were supplied to the Minister for Justice Helen McEntee through the Pulse and Fixed Charge Processing System (FCPS) systems.
Ms McEntee supplied the information in response to a parliamentary question from Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy.
The deputy asked the minister for the number of learner drivers caught driving while unaccompanied under the ‘Clancy Amendment’ law, as well as the number of learner drivers who had their vehicle seized under the same amendment for driving unaccompanied by a qualified driver.
“As the deputy will be aware, the Road Traffic (Amendment) Act 2018, also known as the ‘Clancy Amendment’, seeks to penalise car owners who knowingly allow their vehicles to be used by an unaccompanied learner driver,” said Ms McEntee.
“The law allows the owners of these vehicles to be fined and gives gardaí the power to seize their cars if being driven by unaccompanied drivers,” she added.
According to the minister, due to the fact the information is sourced from the Pulse and FCPS systems, it is possible it may change.
The ‘Clancy Amendment’, enacted by the previous transport minister, Shane Ross, was brought in following the deaths of Geraldine Clancy and her daughter Louise, who died in a crash involving an unaccompanied learner driver in Cork on December 22, 2015.
Noel Clancy, the husband of Geraldine, had campaigned to have the law enacted following their death.