Drivers who take drugs, drink, use their phone illegally or speed could get much tougher sentences if they kill someone under new proposed legislation. They could in fact get life sentences.
The current maximum is 14 years which could significantly increased under new reforms that will be announced in parliament early next year. The changes will affect England, Wales and Scotland. Northern Ireland has separate laws on road safety.
The Justice Secretary has listened to families of victims who say that in many cases the punishment does not fit the crime with too many drivers who cause death by reckless driving receiving fairly light sentences. The new laws will mean that such drivers will feel the full force of the law.
With a life sentence a prisoner will spend a set number of years before they are eligible for parole.
In 2016 a consultation was carried out which gave support to victims who had lost loved ones due to dangerous driving. 90% of people believed there should be a change in the law to reflect the severity of the crime. 70% believed that the maximum sentence should be life in prison.
Last year there where over 170 people convicted of causing death by dangerous driving and 20 people who were sentenced for causing death by careless driving.