20 Mar 2011

'Education the answer' in stopping driver reoffending

11:16 am on 20 March 2011

The co-founder of a course that aims to reduce at-risk drivers' offending says tougher penalties for driving offences will not result in fewer chases by the police.

The Automobile Association says 18 people died in crashes related to police pursuits last year, a record high.

Police Minister Judith Collins has asked police for more information about legal deterrents for drivers who fail to stop for officers.

One of the founders of the Right Track Programme, John Finch, says 300 people have been through its courses in the past four years, after being referred by the courts.

More than 80% have not reoffended.

Mr Finch says education is the answer. Tougher penalties for drivers are unlikely to work, as sending them to jail is not likely to improve their driving, he says.