Speed Cameras

Discussion in 'Motoring' started by Sooty, Mar 24, 2007.

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  1. While i am generally in favour of speed cameras in areas such as accident black spots, schools, childrens playgrounds and built up areas etc I do tend to get a little peeved when i see one of those mobile vans parked on a bridge or in the layby of roads which, in the greater scheme of things are less dangerous.

    I have therefore attached a link which may help one or two people out if they find themselves in a situation when they have been snapped by such a camera but have not been pulled over.

    I would draw your attention to item 10.5b.

    The first you may know about being caught could be a NIP (Notice of Intended Prosecution) through the post asking you to complete the NIP with the drivers details such as name, address, licence No, date of birth etc. However

    A simple letter using legal wording has opened up a new route to get speeding charges dropped, according to experts.

    The statement is at the centre of a High Court appeal to be heard this summer, but for now police forces across the country are dropping cases when it has been used. People accused of speeding have simply been sending in the statement in response to Notices of Intended Prosecution (NIPs)

    Speed camers rely on a law requiring you to say who was driving the vehicle at the time of an alleged offence. Not saying who it was will lead to a charge of withholding information under Section 172 of the Road Traffic Act, while admitting to being the driver will lead to a fixed penalty for speeding.

    But another law says that before suspects are questioned about an offence they should receive a formal caution - and no caution is given when a speeding notice is delivered through the post.

    The standard statement, is designed to accompany an admission to being the driver. It points out that, since no caution has been given, the admission cannot be used as evidence in court.

    Specialist road traffic lawyer Robert Dobson, whose client's case is to be heard by the High Court said, "In English law there's a requirement that if a statement is going to be used against somebody, that person has to be cautioned under Section 78 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act. If a caution hasn't been given, then the argument runs that anything that's said cannot be used as evidence in court."

    Dobson added "We've complied with Section 172 of the road Traffic Act by identifying the driver. But what we're saying is that we're not going to allow that information to then be used against us. Any charge under Section 172 must fail as we have complied. And if any charge is brought for speeding, we'll say, how do you know who was driving?"

    The loophole letter, called the PACE Witness Statement (after the Police and Criminal Evidence Act) is a Catch 22 for police and camera partnerships according to Dobson.

    Even though someone has admitted to being the driver at the time of the offence, that admission can't be used as evidence as no caution was given. If an officer then visits the driver to caution him, only statements made after that can be used - and a caution gives the right to silence.

    Dobon's client's case has been funded by anti-speed camera campaigner Mike Morgan, using donations made to his campaign website.

    Morgan said "Forces have dropped cases all over the country. To my knowledge, very few people who have used the letter have been convicted and a lot of cases have been dropped. I believe the Metropolitan Police, and many other forces, have not issued a summons to anybody who has sent back the statement."

    The letter should read..........

    Dear Chief Constable,

    Further to the above Notice of Intended Prosecution, I confirm that the following individual was driving the above vehicle at the time of the alleged motoring offence:

    [insert all of the details asked for on their NIP here, including name, address, date of birth and driver number]

    As this statement is provided under threat of criminal penalty (Funke v France) and as I have not received the caution required by paragraph 10.1 of PACE Code C (Mawdesley v The Chief Constable of Cheshire (2004) 1 All E.R.58) I make this statement on the express understanding that it shall not be used or disclosed in any proceedings of whatever nature against myself.

    Yours sincerely,

    I have used this when caught speeding at 82MPH in a 70MPH zone on a lovely, very long very straight road at 2pm in the afternoon on a dry sunny day.
    My first response was to request a copy of their photographic evidence which they duly sent. It showed what must have been 2 miles of dual carriageway with only one car on it - mine! The three photos clearly showed the driver and only a blind man would not have recognised me.
    I have no idea how it happened but within a week the photos had faded. I then wrote to them and asked for clearer copies as i couldn't tell who the driver was. They responded with a letter telling me that the photos were not to determine who was driving at the time but were to confirm the vehicle was mine. It was at this point that i sent the letter copied above. I recieved a letter back informing me that no further action would be taken. I also know of two other people who had used the same letter and had the same response. No fine, no penalty points.

    The police have been known to try to scare you into completing the NIP with another letter threatening a higher fine etc, however i know of people who have persisted with the above and not recieved points or fine. One bloke actually completed the form and sent it back with his licence and a cheque and got his cheque and clean licence sent back to him with a short letter saying that no further action would be taken.

    And before people start telling me that taking the above action is wrong, immoral etc etc i will save you the bother. I know its wrong and i really, honestly do not condone speeding however i do not know of anyone who has not crept over the limit enough to recieve the customary 3 points and £60.00 fine.

    I'm not trying to be some sort of lower deck lawyer but Use the above if you wish, if it works - great, if not what have you lost?
  2. I think there is something afoot in my locality----the absence of speed camera's in the backs of vans is noticeable .
    They used to publish a list of roads where the camera was likely to be and that has stopped aswell!

    Looks like the Traffic cops will be back in action again -----however watch out for the add on charges defective this etc etc regarding the state of your car!!and of course the breathalyser
  3. Again, not wishing to appear to condone such a thing, but i did have a friend who was pulled over, brethalysed, failed and was taken to a police station, not before one of the lads with him told him to suck on a copper coin (1p, 2p) he did all the way to the police station, was breathalysed again and passed. this all happened within less than an hour.

    Apparently the stupid twit had supped well over the legal limit and should have failed both breath tests easily. I am now very glad to say he now doesn't touch a drop if he is driving (as should we all) and scolds anyone who does.
  4. anything that reduces the reliance on speed cameras, and increase the police presence on our roads is a good thing.

    A speed camera does not deter anything but speeding (and then only where people know there are cameras in the area). They do not catch drunk/drugged or dangerous drivers. For this you need plod in cars
  5. Does anyone know if this work in Scotland?
  6. what about arguing victimisation of car drivers ? head on speed cameras cannot identify speeding motorcyclists , and in my opinion they are the worst offenders (as most motorcyclists will admit) if speed cameras are to be used then motorcycles should have no plates on front also, as i understand it a criminal offence not to have them on cars any feedback ?
  7. The above letter worked for me when i was caught in south wales.

    I'm not sure if it was due to the letter or the fact that i bombarded them with letters for months before i actually sent the one shown above.

    They actually send you two letters for every one that you send them.

    They send you a letter confirming reciept of your letter, then another letter a few days or weeks later actually responding to your letter. Think about it, if the best they can get out of you is £60 and three points and they have had to send you four or five letters bofore they've actually recieved your fine then is it worth them persuing you? The five letters must cost close to £60 to send with the time spent actally looking into the individual circumstances.

    Why chase and awkward bugger for £60.00 when there's a pile of completed NIPS and cheques for £60 from people who just accept it a cough up.

    The important thing is not to complete the form attached to the NIP. Write the details they request on a letter titled witness statement.

    On the subject of Scotland i have absolutely no idea, sorry chum.
  8. Im both a car driver and a motorcyclist, I travel the M4 everyday and see far more cars weaving in and out trying to get there a few minutes faster than bikes. Most bikes stay in one lane and only filter in slow traffic. A number of car drivers will tailgate, waeve from lave to lane, spend time faffing with the radio/written directions, lighting fags and drinking coffe/water etc, also have been cut up by far more cars than motorbikes....

    Where would you suggest putting a number plate on the front of motorbikes?

    http://www.motorcyclenews.com/MCN/searchresults/?N=0&Ntx=mode%20matchallpartial&Ntk=site&Ntt=speed%20cameras - some interesting articles
  9. Motorcycles used to carry two number plates by law. Front & rear. The front one was double sided and normally mounted on the front mudguard (definitely a health hazard). Some mounted the numbers on their front fairings.
    Health & safety won the day so now only one plate. :smile:
  10. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    The front number plate was only visible from the side anyway and had the additional effect of shredding pedestrians!
  11. This is THE site for information on speed cameras, parking tickets etc. Take time to have a read of the sucess stories - some are pretty amazing.


    The name is strange but the level of legal knowledge is simply outstanding.
  12. Could anybody who has used the above letter say how long it took to recieve a reply.
  13. Motorcycles used to carry two number plates by law. Front & rear. The front one was double sided and normally mounted on the front mudguard (definitely a health hazard).

    Remember the time I had me bike parked and one of the local piss heads came out of the pub staggered all over the show and he fell on the front plate where the sun don't shine. He was none to happy threatened to sue. Yes a deadly weapon at speed.

    So what happened to the banning of so called BULL BARS on the 4x4 another one of Tony's brushed under the carpet schemes.
  14. They are legally bound to respond to your letter within a certain period (14 days i think). this letter usually acknowledges reciept of your correspondence and informs you that they will respond in due course. When they actually get around to it they respond to your individual correspondence. This took a few weeks for me, possibly a couple of months.
  15. Cheers Sooty. Letter gone off this am special delivery. Give it a go!!
    Thanks again.
  16. After 10 years of Driving down th M11 in the rush hour I rarely saw a car changing lanes because it was so busy. Bikes undertaking, changing lanes, using the hard shoulder, sitting on your rear off or near side corner in the blind spot, going down the lane separation lines at 70 mph when the traffic is moving at 30 mph. To numerous to mention, dozens daily.

    Ninety Percent appear to be boy racers between the ages of 17 and 70. Only you can't tell cos of the helmet.

    Now I never see a rush hour let alone a traffic jam.

  17. Inventor wins speed camera battle

    Dr Tann claims his system is more accurate than mobile cameras
    A scientist escaped a charge of speeding at 42mph, after claiming a device he invented showed him travelling 12mph slower.


    A spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "The officer who operated the camera has since retired.

    "Without his verbal evidence, we could not prove the case to the required standard."
  18. Aye, a canny lad. I take it that he didn't go into too much detail on how his system and GPS works.

    Most consumer and aviation GPS use a one second sample rate and use position averaging to smooth the results to be sufficiently readable. As I understand it, Tanny boy could very well have hit 42 MPH, duly read by the Doppler RADAR driving the camera, while still showing an averaged 29.18 MPH on his box of tricks. A simple short period accelerate - decelerate cycle.

    What wonderfully cheap publicity for his box of tricks!

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