Crime involving cars – whether involving offences by drivers or theft of and from cars – represents a substantial proportion of offences committed, and occupies an enormous amount of police time. But it is not always perceived as the serious crime that it is: many traffic offences cause enormous harm in terms of death and injury, but are often not regarded seriously by drivers, the criminal justice system and the state. Other than theft of and from cars it is arguable that car crime is socially constructed as 'not real crime' or 'not even crime'. This book is the first to survey the whole area of car crime. It considers car crime as a coherent whole, addressing the concept of car culture; considers car crime in its various guides in relation to issues such as masculinity, gender, car usage and the environment; considers the historical roots of legislation concerning crime committed in the car, through to current legislation and its effects and implications. The book also addresses issues of crime prevention, and in particular the role of car manufacturers in making cars more crime proof.
Introduction 1. Car culture and the construction of car crime 2. The car in historical context 3. Not real crime? 4. 'Car crime' as theft of and from a vehicle 5. Impaired driving: alcohol, drugs and fatigue 6. Speeding 7. Bad driving: dangerous and careless offences 8. Unlicensed driving 9. Car crime in wider society 10. Past, present and future directions