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D SQDRN 97th IOTC
27th Sep 2006, 11:40
The legitimacy of compelling people in the UK to 'fess up to being the driver of an alleged speeding vehicle and then using that evidence against the driver in question is being tested in the ECHR.

The case is certainly arguable on the grounds of previous cases such as Saunders and Funke.

But time moves on - the UK government has a lot (especially cash) to lose. Their interests in this will be defended.

Would I personally like to see one in the eye for this government and its poor road transport policies? Yes.

Will it change very much? No. Because even if the government loses, the phasing in of forward facing cameras will produce evidence of the identity of any driver of an alleged speeding vehicle without having to obtain a confession by compulsion.

Saintsman
27th Sep 2006, 12:25
the phasing in of forward facing cameras will produce evidence of the identity of any driver of an alleged speeding vehicle without having to obtain a confession by compulsion.

Perhaps drivers will take to wearing false glasses and a moustache as a disguise.

green granite
27th Sep 2006, 12:29
It also allows motorcyclists to speed with impunity as they don't have front number plates. :hmm:

phnuff
27th Sep 2006, 12:51
I gather that the average speed cameras just look at the registration plate, so their increasing usage would also be at risk from any EEC ruling

eal401
27th Sep 2006, 13:35
Jools Townsend from the Brake charity, who supports speed cameras, said if the pair won their case it would have a "devastating effect" on road safety in the country.


Oh do me a favour! I saw numerous dangerous driving examples at the weekend. Not one of the individuals in question was breaking the speed limit.

brain fade
27th Sep 2006, 13:42
Good luck to these two.

Q. Would the UK Gov have to repay all the fines if it lost?

Fuggin magic.:ok:

ORAC
27th Sep 2006, 13:49
Q. Would the UK Gov have to repay all the fines if it lost? No, once you´ve admitted your guilt, the fine stands. A ruling against might mean they can´t ask the question in future, or you don´t have to reply.

But it doesn´t cancel out any admission of guilt which has already been made..

brain fade
27th Sep 2006, 14:02
Yes
But what if you were fined for not stating who was driving. Either because you genuinely don't know or because you chose to be difficult in order to escape. What then eh?:ok:

slim_slag
27th Sep 2006, 14:07
Jools Townsend from the Brake charity, who supports speed cameras, said if the pair won their case it would have a "devastating effect" on road safety in the country.This case is far more important than mere road safety, it deals with the fundamental rights of us miserable subjects and abuse of government/judicial power.

D SQDRN 97th IOTC
27th Sep 2006, 16:04
ORAC

once you've admitted your guilt in the UK, it is difficult, but not impossible to appeal.

None of the above
27th Sep 2006, 16:33
European Court of Human Rights - Hearings in September

Wednesday 27 September 2006

Grand Chamber 9 a.m.

O’Halloran and Francis v. United Kingdom (nos. 15809/02 and 25624/02)

The applicants, Gerard O’Halloran and Idris Francis, are United Kingdom nationals who were born in 1933 and 1939 respectively. Mr O’Halloran lives in London and Mr Francis lives in Petersfield (United Kingdom).
On 7 April 2000 Mr O’Halloran’s vehicle was caught on a speed camera driving at 69 miles per hour (mph) on the M11 motorway, where the temporary speed limit was 40 mph. On 12 June 2001 Mr Francis’ car was caught on speed camera driving at 47 mph, where the speed limit was 30 mph.
In each case the applicant was subsequently informed that the police intended to prosecute the driver of the vehicle. He was asked for the full name and address of the driver of the vehicle on the relevant occasion or to supply other information that was in his power to give and which would lead to the driver’s identification. Each applicant was further informed that failing to provide information was a criminal offence under section 172 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
Mr O’Halloran answered his letter confirming that he was the driver at the relevant time. Mr Francis, however, wrote to the police invoking his right to silence and privilege against self-incrimination.
On 27 March 2001 Mr O’Halloran was tried before North Essex Magistrate’s Court. Prior to the trial, he sought unsuccessfully to have his confession excluded as evidence, relying on sections 76 and 78 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 read in conjunction with Article 6 (right to a fair trial) of the Convention. He was convicted of driving in excess of the speed limit and fined 100 pounds sterling (GBP) (equivalent to EUR 147.66), ordered to pay GBP 150 (EUR 221.49) costs and had his licence endorsed with six penalty points. On 19 October 2001 his application for judicial review of the magistrates’ decision was refused.
On 28 August 2001 Mr Francis was summoned to the Magistrates’ Court for failing to comply with section 172(3) of the Road Traffic Act 1988. On 15 April 2002 he was convicted and fined GBP 750 (EUR 1,107.49) with GBP 250 (EUR 369.16) costs and three penalty points. He maintains that the fine was substantially heavier than that which would have been imposed had he pleaded guilty to the speeding offence.
Mr O’Halloran complains that he was convicted solely or mainly on account of the statement he was compelled to provide under threat of a penalty similar to the offence itself. Mr Francis complains that being compelled to provide evidence of the offence he was suspected of committing infringed his right not to incriminate himself. Both applicants rely on Article 6 §§ 1 (right to a fair trial) and 2 (presumption of innocence).
On 11 April 2006 the Chamber relinquished jurisdiction in favour of the Grand Chamber.
Decisions, judgments and further information about the Court can be found on its Internet site (http://www.echr.coe.int).

http://www.noticias.info/asp/aspComu...asp?nid=214135

I don't have an axe to grind on these matters, and I'd like drivers to observe speed limits, if only from the point of view of reducing the noise of 90mph traffic on the 60mph limit local bypass, but I rather hope that these chaps are successful. Why should they be forced into self-incrimination?

patdavies
27th Sep 2006, 16:59
ORAC
once you've admitted your guilt in the UK, it is difficult, but not impossible to appeal.

If the case is successful at the ECHR, then the grounds for appeal is that the confession was extraxted under duress.

How do our European colleagus manage with their tax cameras?

Curious Pax
27th Sep 2006, 17:07
Pat,
Here in The Netherlands a speeding ticket from a camera goes to the registered owner, but they don't seem to dish out penalty points (fortunately!) unless you are a large amount over, and the police stop you (I think). I'm a bit surprised that the UK hasn't gone towards that method - ticket defaults to the owner unless someone else voluntary confesses, though I'm not sure fleet managers would be keen on that! Would get around the self-incrimination under duress thing however.....

slim_slag
27th Sep 2006, 17:18
ticket defaults to the owner unless someone else voluntary confessesIsn't that a presumption that the owner of the car is guilty? Thought that was a big no-no, but who knows nowadays..

Curious Pax
27th Sep 2006, 17:31
I guess it is, but is it any different to getting a ticket for bald tyres for example - I assume that falls to the owner if it is spotted in a car park with no driver for example.

brain fade
27th Sep 2006, 17:33
Can a camera spot a bald tyre?
Technology these days, sheesh!

patdavies
27th Sep 2006, 18:17
Pat,
Here in The Netherlands a speeding ticket from a camera goes to the registered owner, but they don't seem to dish out penalty points (fortunately!) unless you are a large amount over, and the police stop you (I think). I'm a bit surprised that the UK hasn't gone towards that method - ticket defaults to the owner unless someone else voluntary confesses, though I'm not sure fleet managers would be keen on that! Would get around the self-incrimination under duress thing however.....


So for a camera, it's just a monetary penalty?

Fleet managers are very, very rarely RKs - most company cars belong to leasing companies who have the same 'get-outs' as hire cars.

patdavies
27th Sep 2006, 18:19
Isn't that a presumption that the owner of the car is guilty? Thought that was a big no-no, but who knows nowadays..

Well that is exactly how decriminalised (ie Council enforced) parking works. If the ticket is not paid then the owner is liable - although they seem to equate RK and owner??

AcroChik
27th Sep 2006, 18:53
This is a pretty interesting thread, as it's teaching me some things about EU/UK law and driving I hadn't a clue about. The following is off-thread topic, but might be tangentially relevant.

I recently rented a car in New Jersey and it had a GPS installed. It was always on (no problem, it worked well and I was driving roads I didn't know). When returning the car I learned that the rental company regularly downloads stored GPS data to tell them where I've been.

I can see their commercial interest in this, as insurance rates on rentals is often tied to where the renter intends to drive the vehicle:

Rental guy: "Will you be taking the car out of the tri-state area?"

Me: "No."

He checked a box on the rental form. I initialled said box on the printout.

But, it also occurs to me there are privacy issues involved in this downloading and storage of personal travel data.

When buying a new car last week, I also learned that the thing contains a data recorder that monitors system operation and driver action much like an aircraft flight recorder. It stores a few minutes of data. In the event of an accident, or other event, this data can be downloaded by incident investigators, law enforcement, and could also potentially be made available to insurers.

We're increasingly living in an era in which much is secret and ever less is private. Legal norms haven't caught up to the technological possibilities.

Thread drift over.

chuks
27th Sep 2006, 19:02
so that in Germany the registered owner has to cough up for speeding fines.

BUT! The registered owner may choose to denounce whoever it was actually at the wheel at the time, rather than pay the fine. We got one like that this summer when I was very rashly following a cop car, when I got 'blitzed' ('flashed,' same word as for willy-waving) driving a car registered to my wife. Since it was for just €25 and no points I paid to keep the peace.

Bikers usually get away with being blitzed, since they have no number plate on the front but there have been people annoying enough to the authorities to have been identified by other means. It might not be a real good idea to pass the same fixed camera repeatedly making rude gestures, for instance.

The German cameras are usually grey, so that they can be very hard to spot. My wife got blitzed by one she already knew about at the edge of our village, when she must have been thinking about something else. At least in the UK you get a bit of warning for most of the fixed cameras; in Germany it's not about slowing you down so much as it is about making money. Enterprising villages just set these annoying little boxes up to cash in.

modtinbasher
27th Sep 2006, 19:47
Perhaps drivers will take to wearing false glasses and a moustache as a disguise.


Suppose the cameras could be made very clever and be able to tell clearly who was driving, by matching your photographic driving permit or your passport or other database entry therefore clearly identifying you? So what if you changed your religeous faith temporarily (just whilst driving) to one that is always in the news these days and covered your head up revealing only your eyes? Would the UK traffic taliban be discriminatory about that as well and state that only ethnic majorities could reserve the right to be covered whilst driving?

Shaggy Sheep Driver
27th Sep 2006, 22:29
I guess it is, but is it any different to getting a ticket for bald tyres for example - I assume that falls to the owner if it is spotted in a car park with no driver for example.

Yes, very different! Bald tyres (i.e. roadworthyness) are the responsibility of the owner (though no driver, owner or not, should drive a car with bald tyres). The way the car is driven is solely the responsibility of the driver - who may not be the owner.

C130 Techie
27th Sep 2006, 23:05
Oh do me a favour! I saw numerous dangerous driving examples at the weekend. Not one of the individuals in question was breaking the speed limit.

I don't condone speeding but that comment is absolutely spot on! Spped cameras = Easy revenue. The real idiots get away with it.

mini
27th Sep 2006, 23:29
Gatso pic, fine & penalty points notice in Ireland are sent to the registered owner of the vehicle, in the case of a limited company vehicle, pay the fine by company chq, no penalty points as the company doesn't hold a license.

Thank god for thick law drafters... :E

For Mr average, the letter contains a section asking you as owner to nominate the driver on the pic... sure, my mate in Oz.. :E :E

bjcc
28th Sep 2006, 06:47
Shaggy Sheep Driver

Not quite, defect offences fall to the driver at the time, unless the vehicle is parked on a road then it would fall to the owner.

C130

Of course drivers who commit that sort of offence get away with it, and always will unless Police become onimpresent. If this case before the European Courts succeds, then the result will apply to all offences where the driver is not stopped at the time, not just speeding. It will be interesting to see the howls from those that think this case is a good idea, the first time someone kills another and gets away with it.

This is case is about the self interest of those who think they should be allowed to drive the way they want.

The claim that EAL401 makes may be true, I see numerous examples of dangerous driving too, but unlike him, I would say that the majority are over the speed limit, not under. Then again thats not suprising as the speed limits are comprehensively ignored.

eal401
28th Sep 2006, 06:51
Speed cameras = Easy revenue. The real idiots get away with it.
Absol-bloody-lutey.

The Lancashire bods love deploying a mobile camera on a lovely stretch of dual with a 50 limit, positioned in a manner not readily spotted. This is usually deployed random days but always between 4pm and 5:30pm Mon-Thurs and 12:30-2pm Fridays. Co-incidently, these are the peak times for employees from a local major company to be returning home.

However, drive through nearby residential streets and you can do 40+ with no fear of capture.

Not to mention the enormous number of dangerous activities possible that do not require speed limits to be broken and cannot be spooted by "safety" cameras.

D SQDRN 97th IOTC
28th Sep 2006, 08:30
bjcc

not true that if this case succeeds in the ECHR
"then the result will apply to all offences where the driver is not stopped at the time, not just speeding".

It is more to do with the evidence available to a court before it can make a judgment. At the moment the evidence from cameras that photograph a car from the rear is not evidence of who was driving the car at the relevant time. So the police use a section of the RTA to compel someone to confess to being the owner of the car at the time, and then that confession evidence is used to assist in the prosecution of the driver. In the event of forward facing cameras, where the identity of the driver can be proven from the photograph, then this evidence can be admitted instead of the confession. There will be no need to stop vehicles in these cases.

Suggestion to you all is to start wearing crash helmets and dark glasses when you drive........:cool:

slim_slag
28th Sep 2006, 09:08
It will be interesting to see the howls from those that think this case is a good idea, the first time someone kills another and gets away with it.Well, I support the case and you will get no howls from me. I would expect the police to find the driver and produce sufficient evidence to convict without relying on self incrimination.
This is case is about the self interest of those who think they should be allowed to drive the way they want.Nope, it's about due process and the fundamental human rights of an individual when dealing with government and it's agents (police).

In the States all speed and red light cameras I have seen take a picture of the front and back of the car - two cameras. There is no requirement to force the accused to self incriminate, they have a mugshot of the speeder. Two cameras will cost more which is probably why it isn't done in the UK, it would eat into revenue. It is wrong to violate honest people's human rights to save money over such a minor offence of doing 50 in a 40. Let's hope the judges in Europe see it that way.

Mr Lexx
28th Sep 2006, 09:15
bjcc

Suggestion to you all is to start wearing crash helmets and dark glasses when you drive........:cool:

I have a vision in my head of a nation full of "Stigs" (runs away quickly for making a Top Gear reference in relation to speed)

Krystal n chips
28th Sep 2006, 12:00
So, a query please re speed cameras. Just got off the M60 and the road works in place around Ashton etc. Going North / East---well signed 40mph and average speed camera signs as has been the case since the worls commenced. Coming South / West---a very differnt matter. Signs up for roadworks---but no speed restriction signs----and one camera is signed "camera not in use"----however, the remaining cameras are not signed as such and there is clear evidence of roadworks taking place. Now I realise that the abscence of speed limit signs should be self evident here, but sections of the road are not marked by white lines, only by the temporary cat's eyes that are the norm. So, are these cameras still active and could you be prosecuted I wonder ? The abscence of speed signs is worrying because I simply do not trust the capabilities of the sun reading hole diggers aka The Highways Agency to get matters right---eg the A500 in Stoke, an on going debacle of which I am sure they are proud:rolleyes: where, a couple of weeks ago, we all duly entered the right hand lane as the signs said lane closed 800, 600 etc---only to find it was the right hand lane that was closed and not the signed left one :ugh: --the retards concerned being seemingly unable to distinguish left from right---and hence another :mad: long queue.

TBirdFrank
28th Sep 2006, 12:09
Southbound on the M60 there is a clear lead in from Junction 21 onwards with the approach and commencement of the 40 mph limit very clearly set out.

If you enter at J22 you pass the 40 limit commencement sign. If you join at J23 you join the M60 at the exit from the 40 limit.

I see no escape from the specs cameras in that scenario if you are picked up

Bahn-Jeaux
28th Sep 2006, 13:51
Interesting.
I wonder if the same can be applied to excise offences.
Just got a letter today that my car was seen in such and such a street without a valid excise licence.
I must therfore by law, give details of the registered keeper and pay a penalty of £52 or else go to court and get a conviction and heavier penalty basically.
Cheesed off at the minute because at the time it was seen, I was in the post office renewing my disc.
No gaps between renewals, just a week late.
Doesnt matter according to the letter I have got.
Just wondering if I give details as requested but not on the forms provided so they are not admissable as evidence (as is being advised with speeding offences) will I get nailed or will this ruling also apply if it is successful.
Yet another form of government theft.

Grainger
28th Sep 2006, 14:55
I thought you got 14 days' grace ?

After all you end up paying for the whole month, so they get the same amount of money.

at the time it was seen, I was in the post office renewing my disc.What about the exact timings ? If the time/date stamp on your receipt from the Post Office is earlier than that of the alleged offence, it could be interesting.

phnuff
28th Sep 2006, 14:59
I heard on the radio this morning that official figures show something like 15% of accident are caused by speeding while more than 30% are caused by failing to keep a good look out. So, with the governments policy of trying to reduce accidents, what will the move to more and more cameras do to improve peoples ability to lookout. ?? Answer, sweet FA

On the subject of tax discs. Last saturday, I renewed mine online and have a receipt email etc. So far, it hasn't arrived to me in the post. I wonder what my legal position will be if it fails to arrive - anyone know??

Saintsman
28th Sep 2006, 15:07
"In the Post Office at the time"

Serves you right. You should have done it on-line :}

Nobody in their right mind can enjoy standing in those PO queues. Much better to do it in works time on the company PC!

Tuned In
28th Sep 2006, 15:13
bjcc

I might be wrong, but I really think that you are. Surely there is no requirement for self-incrimination in other offenses where the driver is not stopped. So this will only take speeding to the same level as causing death by dangerous driving for example, or failing to stop at the scene in terms of the rights of the accused. Call me old-fashioned but I actually think that is reasonable.

Slim Slag is quite right in correcting your misapprehension of the meaning of this case.

Krystal n chips
28th Sep 2006, 15:17
Southbound on the M60 there is a clear lead in from Junction 21 onwards with the approach and commencement of the 40 mph limit very clearly set out.
If you enter at J22 you pass the 40 limit commencement sign. If you join at J23 you join the M60 at the exit from the 40 limit.
I see no escape from the specs cameras in that scenario if you are picked up

Not any more there isn't----one lane ( the inside one after the Oldham exit / entrance is closed ) but that is it---and that is where the camera signed "not in use" is situated, Hence my query.

TBirdFrank
28th Sep 2006, 20:03
M60 J22 to J23

Resurfacing complete - restrictions lifted

Specs cameras still there but out of use

Drivers flashing brake lights everywhere as they don't understand that you can return to normality now without picking up a ban and that the big yellow perils are no longer a threat.

Same northbound - I'll find out tomorrow

bjcc
28th Sep 2006, 20:24
Tuned In

Nope, I'm not wrong. There are a number of other offences the section of the RTA appliea too. I can't remember all of them, and it would make a dull list anyway, but it includes offences of failing to comply with traffic signs, dangerous and carless driving.

I understand that those concerned are only going to Europe over speeding, but the result could be to establish a principle that covers any offence. Still, so long as the rights of those that want speed are preserved what does it matter.

So all that will happen if this case succeds is the self interests of those who want to ignore speed limits will be served, and a few more drivers will get away with other offences they shouldn't.

I don't agree with slim slags assessment of the reasons behind this case, While it sounds very noble I don't accept it is for any other reason than a desire to keep a clean licence. If this was any other offence there would be the usual cries of how stupid the Human Rights Industry is.


Bahn-Jeaux

What offence was mentioned? there are 2. Failing to display a VEL and not having one.

In spite of what Grainger says, there is no 14 days grace. You either have one or you don't at the time. The proccedure has changed in that Police used to just fill in a CLE 2/6 and submit it to DVLA. If you got your tax before that was proccessed, it was binned. Now Police issue an FPN, but anyone can report you to DVLA.

I agree seems unfair, and I have fallen foul of it myself. Bought a car at 7pm (when the post office was shut) and drove to the post office next day, with all my documents and the filled in forms. Hants Traffic issued me an FPN. Ok, it seems unfair, but shit happens, and to the latter he was correct in doing so, but maybe discression would have been better. Not my decision though, his.

Grainger is right that you have to pay the tax back to the start of the month, so you in thoery have one, just you didn't at the time.

In my case it was a double wammy, I had to pay the FPN and pay from the start of that month, so I paid 20 days worth for nothing.

Unwell_Raptor
28th Sep 2006, 20:24
If I read the reports correctly, this judgement will not be delivered for some months.

I think we should all stay schtum until then. Once the decision is announced, one way or another, Danny should get ready for another 10,000 post thread.

Flying Lawyer
28th Sep 2006, 21:46
I hope the applicants win. I've no idea if they will.
I've always thought it's not only unfair, but ludicrous, that motorists have fewer rights than people suspected of criminal offences.

Mr Francis’ case make interesting reading.
His car caught by a scamera at 47 mph in a 30 mph limit.
Refused to supply the name and address of the driver saying he was invoking his right to silence and privilege against self-incrimination.
Fined £750 and ordered to pay costs of £1000!


U_R
X's car is snapped by a scamera.
He answers the demand for information by saying that Y was driving.
Y denies he was.
There's no independent evidence of who was driving.
Could either be convicted of anything?

Grainger
28th Sep 2006, 21:50
. . . self interests of those who want to ignore speed limits will be served . . .That's not what this is about and you know it. It's about the rights of perfectly safe drivers not to be persecuted for minor unintentional infringements in circumstances that do no harm to anyone. Meanwhile, genuine threats to safety - tailgaters, mobile phone users, drugged and uninsured drivers go unimpeded. But that's OK so long as the tickets keep flowing.

Put the cameras where the genuine safety dangers are, instead of places where there are artificially low and often poorly signed limits in order to catch as many people as possible, and no-one would have a problem.

Unwell_Raptor
28th Sep 2006, 21:58
FL - I have no idea. I would ask my clerk, and if I returned home in doubt and worry I would email the judges and recorders who are in my address book and ask them.

Flying Lawyer
28th Sep 2006, 22:17
U_R

Touché. :)


________________

The accuracy of a claim made by many people in the various speed camera threads has been confirmed by the first ever set of statistics released by the Department for Transport to explain what causes road accidents.

Exceeding the speed limit is not the main cause of death on Britain's roads.

Times report (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2379124,00.html)

bjcc
29th Sep 2006, 00:36
Grainger

Quote:

"It's about the rights of perfectly safe drivers not to be persecuted for minor unintentional infringements in circumstances that do no harm to anyone"

Who says that all those that recieve FPN's for speeding are safe? Percecuted? No, they chose to ignore a posted speed limit, so why does that make them percecuted. In fact this case has NOTHING to do with breaking law, it is about using another law to get out of being punished. Funny, thats something you complain about when its a Police Officer.

Quote:

"Meanwhile, genuine threats to safety - tailgaters, mobile phone users, drugged and uninsured drivers go unimpeded"


Of course not all drivers are convicted of every occation those offences are committed, just as not every person speeding is convicted. It's easy to claim that those offences are not looked at, but then you would be wrong, you just don't see it. There are only 120,000 police in England & Wales, do you expect them to be everywhere? They obviously can't be, just as you can't be, and therefore you are not in a position to claim that there is no action taken on those offences.

Speeding legisaltion will not change as a result of this case, whichever way it goes. All that will change is the way it is enforced. Which means less time spent dealing with the offences you mention.

Heliport
29th Sep 2006, 01:25
There are only 120,000 police in England & Wales, do you expect them to be everywhere? They obviously can't be .....
I always wonder about the limited police manpower when I read reports like this one. (BBC report)

6 September:
A Christian campaigner who handed out anti-homosexual leaflets at Cardiff's Mardi Gras gay and lesbian festival has appeared before city magistrates.
Magistrates heard he had handed out the leaflets - entitled "Same-sex love - same-sex sex: What does the Bible say?"
He denied using threatening words and behaviour and was remanded on unconditional bail ..... until 28 September.

28 September:
A Christian campaigner has been cleared of using threatening words and behaviour when handing out leaflets at a gay and lesbian event in Cardiff.
Crown Prosecution Service decided not to proceed with the case.
The leaflets quoted the Bible and that told gays: "Turn from your sins and you will be saved."
He was held in a police station for four hours and was charged with using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress after he refused to accept a caution.


He said: "The police should concentrate on nicking villains instead of people like me going about my lawful business.
"I'm quite pleased the CPS had the good sense to drop this case at an early stage. The police should never have arrested me in the first place, let alone charged me."
Whatever may be thought about his religious beliefs or his views on homosexuality, maybe he's got a point there?

South Wales Police said the CPS decison not to go ahead with the presecution of Mr Green due to insufficient evidence did not "challenge the legality" of his arrest. :rolleyes:
So if some PC doesn't understand what is or isn't an offence, that makes the arrest legal? Very odd. :confused:

bjcc
29th Sep 2006, 02:57
Heliport

Couldn't agree more. Except to say that the incident is a reflection on the way some in society make something out of nothing. If this was off the PC's own back, then he's a plank at best. If it was as the result of complaint, then he lacks ability 'use ways and means to keep the peace'.

Although obviously a Sergeant and the CPS, prior to and at the first hearing didn't think the arrest unlawful. Had they done so they would have refused the charge, or dicontinued at an earlier stage. Perhaps no one, is perfect afterall.

D SQDRN 97th IOTC
29th Sep 2006, 08:09
bjcc

you say:
"In fact this case has NOTHING to do with breaking law, it is about using another law to get out of being punished. "

No it's not. It's about a right at common law that has existed for several hundred years about defendants not having their own compelled evidence used against them - why should there be a difference between speeding motorists and burglars? A form of this common law right can also be found in statute - I suggest you have at look at PACE and read what it says about confessions.

For what it's worth, my view is that it is no less odious to compell a suspect by use of statute to self incriminate himself than it is to obtain a confession by duress and then use that evidence against the suspect. Some might view the duress of a large fine and loss of licence as more heavy or serious than the duress of being put in a cell and deprived of food and water until a confession is signed. But can you justify why one is legal and other is not?

Finally - as you are probably someone who likes to think he upholds the law, should the use of compelled evidence by UK plc against speeding motorists be found in itself to have been illegal by the ECHR (and you'll find some EU governments are found to be in breach of various laws with surprising frequency) would you change your tune to one of shock, horror and outrage that UK plc has been in breach of the law? :yuk:

ShyTorque
29th Sep 2006, 08:11
Plenty of police out there doing good stuff? Courts protecting us?

My son was viciously assaulted in the street, yards from home in a completely unprovoked attack by a nutter almost twice his size. His nose was broken so badly that the nasal bone was sticking out through his facial skin. His girlfriend (with whom who he was walking with when this thug ran up behind them) and her mother were completely distraught. I was called to the scene after 999 had already been dialled and the police had been called. When I arrived the offender was still on scene. The police did not send anyone at all. I dialled 999 a second time.

I phoned the police duty control room inspector, told him who I was (an ex-chief pilot of their helicopter unit) and asked again for someone to be sent.

This still did not happen and the offender departed. We eventually got an ambulance to the scene, my son was covered in blood by this time, and he was taken to hospital.

Later that evening, angry and bemused, I rang one of my ex-colleagues, a serving police sergeant and described what had just happened. He was disgusted. He also rang the control room himself and spoke to the senior inspector on duty.

A policeman arrived the following morning and took a statement. I provided evidence in the form of photographs taken at the scene and in the ambulance. I was told after the court had been held (we were not advised the date had been brought forwards by a week and we missed it) the photographs could not be used in evidence.

From what I learned afterwards, during the court hearing, the extent of my son's injury had somehow been downgraded to a "nosebleed". The offender was fined £200 (less than a day's pay for him). My son still suffers from a lack of confidence in public places and will bear the facial scar for the rest of his life.

bjcc, Don't talk to me how good our police and judicial system are. :*

btw, Please note that the "s" key on your keyboard apppears to be broken.

SXB
29th Sep 2006, 09:38
I work at EHCR, the concensus here is that these guys will probably win, we have a sweep going for most of the interesting cases and at the moment money is split 60/40 in favour of the drivers.

Don't hold your breath though, the Court will not deliver for some time.

Wile E. Coyote
29th Sep 2006, 10:32
bjcc said No, they chose to ignore a posted speed limit, so why does that make them percecuted.

I've had two speeding tickets - for doing 33 mph in a 30, and for doing 43 mph in a 40. On each occasion I wasn't concentrating on my exact speed, I was more worried about the assholes tailgating me and so was concentrating on the road ahead so I wouldn't have to suddenly brake.

Normally I drive within the speed limit, but observation of the road ahead always takes priority over maintaining an exact speed.

BTW - the two cameras that caught me were both LTI 20:20s

As for being persecuted.... I phoned one of the police authorities who sent me a ticket, and they told me that their goal was to raise the number of speeding tickets issued from 5,000 per year to 100,000 per year. I call that persecution.

So nowadays, my target speed when being tailgated is 3-5mph below the speed limit... so if you get stuck behind me doing 25mph in a 30 zone. tough. The side-effect is of course that people tailgate me even more... and eventually get frustrated and overtake in stupid places.

tart1
29th Sep 2006, 10:39
33mph in a 30??

I was under the impression that you had to be doing 35/36 to trigger the camera. 33 seems awfully harsh. :(

lexxity
29th Sep 2006, 12:19
I know someone who got done for 32mph.

Mr L got done coming down from national speed limit into a 30mph. No warnings signs of the "slow down now" variety just a 30mph sign, which you couldn't see as it's round a blind bend and the camera right behind said sign. West Yorkshire must have been raking it in until the camera was moved. :yuk: I'd call that persecution.

If anyone else knows the road it's the one after Woodhead and the Flouch roundabout heading towards Barnsley.

Wile E. Coyote
29th Sep 2006, 13:26
33mph in a 30??

I was under the impression that you had to be doing 35/36 to trigger the camera. 33 seems awfully harsh.

Fixed cameras are usually set for about 36 in a 30, about 47 in a 40 and so on. The "rules" are different with portable cameras....:ugh:

chuks
29th Sep 2006, 15:18
In Germany if you pull that 'No idea who was driving, actually,' number the authorities can force you to fit a tachygraph to your vehicle. That would be that complicated and expensive gizmo that a bus or an HGV uses, when each driver must sign a separate data sheet that then records the time of day and the speed. Ho-ho! No more 'confusion' about who was at the wheel, eh?

I think the whole thing is down to confusion, when 'slow' is taken to mean 'safe' even though any fule kno that isn't necessarily so. It's just so much easier to measure your speed than any other parameter, plus there is all that money to be made from fines when other sources of revenue seem to be declining. Too, there is the wowser factor, when lots of folks think speeders might be having fun rather than just pootling along in a little crap-box.

Connecticut used to have a big sign at a border with New York State that read 'Welcome to Connecticut. Please drive slowly.' Jeez! Not, 'safely' or, 'considerately' or any one of many other injunctions, but just 'slowly.' Jesus wept. It might have made for an interesting court case to slow right down, there on the Merritt Parkway, to 10 or 15 mph and then claim that you were just following official advice.

Coconutty
29th Sep 2006, 15:36
The Times report that FL flagged up makes interesting reading :
Failure to look properly was the most frequently reported contributory factor ..... ( to injury accidents )

Maybe its because we're all too busy looking out for the cameras strategically placed / hidden behind road signs / trees etc. instead of "looking properly" at the road we're driving on :ooh:

Safety cameras ? - Maybe not so safe after all then :rolleyes:

http://i34.photobucket.com/albums/d129/coconut11/Coconutty.jpg

The Hustler
29th Sep 2006, 15:42
The best comment I ever heard was about the 55mph speed limit in the US.55mph is slow enough that you feel safe, but quick enough to kill youCameras exist that can isolate abnormal behaviour - my old company invented oneVMAD (Video Motion Anomaly Detector)
VMAD learns 'normal' movements in a scene and triggers an alert when unusual activity occurs. Can be used for perimeter monitoring, and wrong-way driving, for example.To my mind that sounds like it could fit the criteria of 'Safety Camera' rather than just being a cash machine.

If anyone is interested in technology (and hoping this doesn't count as advertising as I no longer work for them and they don't actually retail products - they just invent them :E ) then have a look around www.roke.co.uk (http://www.roke.co.uk) - they make a lot of aviation stuff (airborne and ground-based) as well.

bjcc
29th Sep 2006, 19:58
D SQDRN 97th IOTC

'Incriminating' ones self isn't confined to speed cameras though is it?

S1 Prevention of crime act, you have to show that made or adapted offensive weapons are not for use for causing injury.

Driving with a blood alcohol concentration above the prescribed limit (and the flying equivilent) the defendent provides the evidence against himself. The alternative, ie refusal to do so usually leads to a greater penelty.


Fingerprint & DNA evidence is provided by the defendent, albeit with no greater penelty apart from the possibility of having prints are samples taken by force.

The same section of the road traffic act that applies to notices for speeding also applies to S22 offences, dangerous and careless driving, bus lane offences.

Failing to stop offences, a notice to driver is also used to help in the detection of those offences.

The list could probably go on if I really thought about it.

All of those matters are covered by the same principle as is being used either in the current case before the ECHR or a pending one. No, they are not mentioned, but I am bloody sure your trade will make use of the judgement if they win.

I take your point, you don't agree with self incrimination. But isn't that exactly what happens in a large number of criminal cases, a confession is exactly that. Why? the possiblity of a lighter sentence? Is that compeling to some? yes, of course it is, guilty or not.

Is it using one peice of legislation to evade punishment? Yes, I think it is. I doubt there is any interest in the minds of those bringing the case.

Who will win from this? No one (apart from Lawyers and printers). The legislation may change, the result may be that more people that shouldn't pay a FPN will have to do so, not less.

Flying Lawyer
29th Sep 2006, 23:27
For information -

bjcc is correct that the legal requirement to provide the identity of the driver applies to the investigation of many road traffic offences, not only speeding.

His point about Section 1 of the Prevention of Crime Act 1953 is incorrect. Firstly, his summary of the section is incorrect; that is not what "you have to show". Secondly, it has nothing whatsoever to do with compulsory self-incrimination.

There is some force in the comparison with obtaining fingerprints and DNA from a suspect.

His response to D SQDRN "I take your point, you don't agree with self incrimination" illustrates that he hasn't understood the point. No-one has, or could sensibly, disagree with self-incrimination. We're all free to incriminate ourselves or even make a full confession, if we wish; it would be ludicrous if we weren't.
The issue here is a legal requirement to answer questions (even if the answer incriminates), enforced by punishment in the event of remaining silent.
The rest of that paragraph shows confusion between incentive and legal compulsion. (I won't go further into it or we'll go way off topic.)

FL

bjcc
29th Sep 2006, 23:43
FL

The point you didn't answer, and DSqdn has not is, should this case be successful, would you use it as a defence against any traffic offence where a notice was served requiring the drivers details?

While this case is about speeding, and you have given your opinion that you hope they win, would you be so happy if the result also allowed drivers to evade conviction for other, what may be seen as more serious, RTA offences?

I am not trying to lead you into a debate on whether it is right or wrong, just want your opinion on it. Or is this your opinion for speeding offences only?

slim_slag
30th Sep 2006, 08:35
bjcc,

People sometomes use the terms 'police state' and 'free society' to describe the way citizens are treated by the powers that be.

So, there is a regime which requires its citizens to answer questions put by the police. If the citizen doesn't answer that question, the courts of that regime will heavily penalise the citizen, only because he chooses not to speak to the police. That is the crime he has been found guiilty of, not answering questions put by the police.

Does that sound more like a police state or a free society to you?

bjcc
30th Sep 2006, 08:47
Slim Slag

In your discription, which is very open and disigned to produce the answer you want, yes.

In reality, which is the situation in the UK, no. Why should you not have to account for why your car is driven in a particular way?

Why decide now to contest this? As FL points out, it's something used in many traffic offences, and has been since at least 1974.

It's also a principle in gathering other evidence. I presume you don't object to fingerprint evidence, or DNA in rape cases, or does forcing someone to give those make the UK, and most other countries a Police state?

slim_slag
30th Sep 2006, 10:32
Why should you not have to account for why your car is driven in a particular way?Because my car can legally be driven by anybody with valid insurance. My responsibility is that my car is taxed/MOTd/insured. I am only responsible for it "being driving in a particular way" if I am driving it.You appear to be arguing I am responsible for the actions of other. This is another 'police state' method, collective punishment is pretty damned unacceptable I presume you don't object to fingerprint evidence, or DNA in rape cases, or does forcing someone to give those make the UK, and most other countries a Police state?Those are means to uniquely identify me as an individual. I don't object to the police identifying me by photographing my face as I am driving a car through a speed trap at a speed significantly higher than the posted speed and what might be a dangerous manner.

What I object to is the police requiring me to answer questions and the courts punishing me if I choose not to. That is the fundamental issue behind this case, it's probably speeding as that is the offence which triggers the most common abuse of our human rights in the UK.

bjcc
30th Sep 2006, 10:50
Slim Slag



Is it fairer then to presume the keeper of a vehicle is the driver and fine him for the specific offence, as apparently happens in other countries? Or fairer to make a requirement for the keeper to say who was driving?

Personally, I think that the UK system is fairer. Yes, you have to admit who the driver is, and no, I don't see any issue with that. I hardly think it makes the UK a Police state, given that the system has been around for a very long time, though only come to notice of the majority since enforcement cameras.

It is open to anyone to decline to fill in the form and argue thier case in Court. Oh, but they have haven't they, this has already been argued in the UK courts, and failed.

You have always been required to give your name, address and date of birth to a police officer requiring it, if he stops you in connection with the Road Traffic Acts, even if you have commited no offence. My opinion is that a postal requirement is no different.


Actually, you can be responsible for a great deal more than documentation you mention, such as the condition of the vehicle.

slim_slag
30th Sep 2006, 10:59
bjcc,

It is not a matter of what is 'fairer', it is a matter of what is 'fair'. For instance, if somebody is convicted of speeding you cannot say locking him up for ten years is fairer then killing him, so let's lock him up for ten years.

I also have no objection to providing my identity to a police officer if he saw me commit an offence.

International treaties take precedence over national laws. Get your head around that concept and you might start to understand.

bjcc
30th Sep 2006, 11:11
I wouldn't agree with your assessment of international treaty. The 'treatiy' is also a piece of UK law now, the Human Righst Act. The argument has been made in the UK Courts, using that act and wasn't found in favour of those who are now before the ECHR.


So as of yet, the International Treaty you mention has not been shown to have preccedence. At present the UK legislation, as it has been for a very long time stands. There is nothing further to get my head round.

They may succed, they may not. I don't believe they should, but that is my opinion. I don't see a requirement to of the owner of a car to say who was driving it at the time to be unfair. The fact that it has long been a requirement hasmn't turned the country into a police state yet.

A Police officer does not have to see you commit an offence while driving to require your name address and date of birth, just that you are driving. Again the principle applies, if you don't you give the information, you commit an offence.

A speed camera is doing no more than recording your car being involed in an offence, the requirement is then made to povide the drivers details by, or on behalf of a Police Officer (eg Local Chief Constable). The requirement to provide the drivers details is therefore only different in that it is made by post.

Grandpa
30th Sep 2006, 11:49
Could have been spared if only you had considered your car as it is really: a lethal weapon.

Would you argue anymore if your gun had been used as a threat against peacefull citizens and, after identification this fact had led you to "answer a few questions"?

Radar have cut half the numbe of losses on our roads in rwo years: have you got anything better?

chuks
30th Sep 2006, 12:15
You cannot say why traffic accidents have increased or decreased in any particular area. It is often the case that they increase after the installation of cameras.

Almost anything can be a 'lethal weapon' if it is not intelligently used. My last ticket in the States was for 70 in a 55 at 2100 on a Sunday evening on the Florida Interstate, when Smokey was hiding in the 'Welcome to Florida' centre parking area! I was doing the old limit, 70, thinking about my upcoming check flight.

If there had been a child playing on the Interstate I might have run it over at 70 instead of 55, or what? I thought it was a chickensh*t ticket, but I paid it anyway.

When it comes to the States, particularly, I find the indiscipline, albeit at slower speeds, to be appalling! People wander about the Interstates with no signalling, sitting in the passing lane at 55 or whizzing past in the slow lane at 70 and no one seems to mind a bit. In Germany you would have been ticketed for lousy driving and never mind the speed.

slim_slag
30th Sep 2006, 12:30
So as of yet, the International Treaty you mention has not been shown to have preccedenceRelevent Treaty (http://conventions.coe.int/Treaty/en/Treaties/Html/005.htm)Article 46 – Binding force and execution of judgments

The High Contracting Parties undertake to abide by the final judgment of the Court in any case to which they are parties.Good enough for you?

Your previous arguments don't appear to hold water, now you are saying UK law is OK because it's been like that for years. Well, I am sure the Victorian mill owners used the same argument when it was suggested they provide better working conditions, and male chauvanists used the same argument when it was suggested women should get the vote.

flybhx
30th Sep 2006, 13:27
I trust that if these people win we shall hear nothing from our correspondents when the following occurs:-

A car hits a pedestrian killing them and makes off. A witness takes down the registration number. The police speak to the registered keeper who refuses to say who was driving. Case closed due to no evidence on identification of the driver.


Same piece of legislation S.172 of the Road Traffic Act.

Leave it with you folks

Flying Lawyer
30th Sep 2006, 14:36
bjcc
I wasn’t answering points, merely pointing out for the benefit of other readers which of your suggestions about the law were correct and which were incorrect.

In response to your questions:
Even if the applicants are successful, it is impossible to say what I would or would not do in future cases without considering the precise details of the judgment – which has not yet been written.

If the Court rules that answers given by someone under legal compulsion under the Road Traffic Act should not subsequently be used for the purpose of prosecuting that person, then I would not “use it as a defence” (because it wouldn’t be) but I would argue (in any road traffic case in which evidence was obtained by that means) that the evidence so obtained is inadmissible as part of the prosecution case and should therefore be excluded. ie Not used against the defendant.
Similarly, when prosecuting, I would not be able to use it - for the same reason.

If we are to reach informed and intelligent opinions about a law - any law - it is essential that we consider it unemotionally. ie How it operates generally and not, in an emotional manner, how it may operate in a particular case. We may be angry if it leads to a particular person escaping punishment, but it doesn’t follow that the law is bad. The same law may have prevented thousands of others being wrongly convicted.

Emotion clouds rational thought.
Introducing emotion, which sometimes happens in these ‘legal’ discussions, such as (for example) ‘What if it was your child?’, ‘Would you same the same if the (alleged) offence was more serious?’, ‘If you’d seen the accidents I’ve seen’ or ‘If you’d had to tell a family their child had been killed in a road accident’ etc etc is not conducive to rational discussion.

We either believe suspects should have a right to remain silent if they wish, or we don’t. We cannot rationally say ‘Yes, except if the alleged offence is serious’ or ‘Yes, except if the offence is one I particularly dislike.’


I see no flaw in the question posed by slim-slag.
You say it was designed to produce the answer he wanted. I dare say it was. That’s the nature of intelligent debate – he made his point by asking a question which was straightforward, went direct to the very heart of the issue being discussed, and was not based upon some extreme or emotional scenario.

I have no idea what you mean by “In reality, which is the situation in the UK, no” because “in reality” that is precisely what happens under the Road Traffic Act requirement.

“Why decide now to contest this?”
Why is that relevant?
The fact that a law has existed for 30 years (or even 130 years) doesn’t mean it’s necessarily fair, nor does it mean it shouldn’t be changed.

I have no idea what you mean by “It's also a principle in gathering other evidence.”
What “principle”?
It may be an incorrect use of the term ‘principle’ in this context. You’ve used the term incorrectly several times when referring to statutory provisions. Just because something is the law doesn’t make it a ‘principle of law.’

“The requirement to provide the drivers details is therefore only different in that it is made by post.”
Can you really not see the difference between a policeman seeing you driving requiring your name, address, DoB etc, and requiring a vehicle owner to tell the police who was driving it on a particular occasion because they don’t know and would like to find out?


flybhx
Apart from a very limited number of specific statutory exceptions, there is no legal requirement for people (whether suspects or others who have information) to assist the police with their investigations into an offence.
I don't know, but believe that is the law in most Western countries.

Perhaps the law is wrong and should be changed?
But, I see no reason why there should be an exception in relation to driving offences while people suspected of other offences are not compelled to answer questions (whether or not the answers would incriminate) and people having information which might assist in the investigation are entitled not to answer questions - in both cases without fear of prosecution and punishment.

Ozzy
30th Sep 2006, 15:03
Slim Slag
Is it fairer then to presume the keeper of a vehicle is the driver and fine him for the specific offence, as apparently happens in other countries? Or fairer to make a requirement for the keeper to say who was driving?
Personally, I think that the UK system is fairer. Yes, you have to admit who the driver is, and no, I don't see any issue with that. I hardly think it makes the UK a Police state, given that the system has been around for a very long time, though only come to notice of the majority since enforcement cameras.
It is open to anyone to decline to fill in the form and argue thier case in Court. Oh, but they have haven't they, this has already been argued in the UK courts, and failed.
You have always been required to give your name, address and date of birth to a police officer requiring it, if he stops you in connection with the Road Traffic Acts, even if you have commited no offence. My opinion is that a postal requirement is no different.
Actually, you can be responsible for a great deal more than documentation you mention, such as the condition of the vehicle.I thought the accused was innocent until proven guilty. Why presume the owner (not keeper) of the car was the driver? The courts must prove this. Why should the owner have to admit who the driver is? The courts should prove who the driver is. Seems to me the courts have one set of rules for car owners accused of speeding and another for the set of people accused of a different crime.

Ozzy:mad:

D SQDRN 97th IOTC
30th Sep 2006, 15:50
bjcc

As I understand it, the previous decisions of the ECHR on the obtaining and use of compelled evidence in criminal trials is this:
There may be occasions on public policy grounds where the obtaining of evidence by compulsion can be justified. Failure to comply with the compulsion might result in the loss of liberty for a period of time. Such compelled evidence is not then generally admissible against the person who gave it save in the situation where that person subsequently gives evidence under oath which contradicts that which he gave under compulsion. To the extent it corrects or rebuts the conflicting evidence, the compelled evidence becomes admissible.

Would I use the ECHR judgment as a defence? To the extent it clarifies the general admissibility of evidence in criminal proceedings, all UK courts and lawyers may want to familiarise themselves with the judgment.

419
30th Sep 2006, 16:02
If I'm charged with assault, theft, murder etc, I can stay totally silent. I can not be forced to give any evidence to the police or to the courts.
Any guilt on my part can-not be inferred due to my silence. The case against me must be proven beyond a resonable doubt.

But, if I'm accused of going 3 or 4 mph over th posted speed limit, I am presumed to be guilty, unless I can prove otherwise, and by using the right to silence, which is allowed for other classes of offences, I will automatically be found guilty of an offence.

And taking this to the extreme
what would happen if my vehicle was photographed by a "safety" camera whilst speeding, and at the same time, the driver or passenger was pointing a gun out of the window?
I as the registered keeper would either be fined for speeding, or have to give the name of the driver, failing which, I would be fined.

But for the firearms offence, the prosecution would have to prove who was guilty of the offence, and I as the registered keeper could keep silent (if I knew anything about it), and I would not be found guilty purely because of my silence.

Grandpa
30th Sep 2006, 19:36
....accidents increase or decrease in many areas.

When automated radar were introduced on our roads a few years ago, not much was changed around our lethal roads...............

................and then.................

...people began to receive fines at home for speeding at, say, 95km/hr instead of limit 90km/hr............

Add to these radars mobile units, and the consequence on your licence from multiple expensive fines.

....................and in a few month a majority of drivers began to respect speed limits, more and more of them...........

And now the death toll has been reduced from half on our roads on a national scale (about 5000/year instead of more than 10000).

Long live radars!

419
30th Sep 2006, 19:47
But Grandpa, in the Uk, the number of cameras has increased dramatically over the past few years, but the number of accidents hasn't fallen.
All that has happened, is that the number of police on the roads has fallen, so more and more drivers are failing to get stopped or prosecuted for other offences that cameras don't detect. (dangerous driving, no insurance, licence etc).

There are an estimated 1 in 20 cars on the road in the UK, being driven without valid insurance, and an awful lot of people do not even register their vehicles.
Neither of these groups of people have anything to fear from speed cameras, but they are far more dangerous that someone driving 3mph over the limit.

brain fade
30th Sep 2006, 20:43
Don't know about other folk, but I just batter about at whatever speed I fancy nowadays. I know where all the cameras are so I just slow down at the sites. Rest of the time just suit myself. Not a loony or much of a speed merchant but lets face it- there are so few patrol cars about.

Sadly I think driving standards have really dropped since the GATSO's arrived. Nutters know they are unlikely to get picked up by a traffic car. Hell, the other day a boy racer passed me on the hard shoulder going about 90mph. Never seen that before.

It's a nutters charter!;)

SXB
30th Sep 2006, 20:49
419, I think what Grandpa means is that here in France people used to drive excessively fast. For example the speed limit on the motorway here is 130kmh (81mph) but, a few years ago, it was accepted that the real limit was between 150-160kmh. That's all changed now and you'll be prosecuted here for doing more than about 135kmh. The advent of speed cameras and mobile radar has definately reduced the number of deaths of French roads.

French police have also stepped up their fight against drinking and driving, there was a time when everybody would drink like Serge Gainsbourg and then drive home, those days have now gone due to stronger enforcement and this is another contributory factor to the decrease in deaths on French roads.

G-CPTN
1st Oct 2006, 01:22
I've not driven in rural France for MANY years (used to drive down to le Mans), but narrow roads lined by avenues of trees were LETHAL. Saw several serious collision-with-trees in my time.
Last journey I made was CDG to Versailles (or close by). Never got much above 50kph! and at times walking would have been quicker!

bjcc
1st Oct 2006, 17:07
FL

You are mistaking what you regard as principle, ie of law, with the word used alone. I didn't say principle of law, did I?

The 'pinciple' or reason, or point, of the requirement isn't that it proves an offence. The photo/video proivides evidence of that, and that is what should be disputed. The notice to driver does not accuse anyone person of driving, it asks for that information, nothing more.

You don't have to return the notice to driver, although you may be summonsed or fined if you don't. Again it is open to the keeper of the vehicle to take it to court if they wish. The shortcommings you have previously pointed out about District Courts are an issue of the justice system, may have a bearing on it, but thats another issue.

I would guess there may be an argument for including a Caution in the letter, but as admission of being the driver is NOT evidence of offence, that may be the reason why it's not, again, you are in a better position to say if it is or not.

slim_slag

No, you missunderstand, the International Treaty does not take preccedence in this case, because as yet there has been no judgement made. At presnet the UK legislation stands.

eal401
1st Oct 2006, 18:09
And now the death toll has been reduced from half on our roads on a national scale (about 5000/year instead of more than 10000).
Grandpa, I am will to bet the fundemental reason for that. The French authorities actually used speed cameras/radar for a genuine road safety reason. In the UK, speed cameras have two purposes.

Revenue generation for the relevant authority
Justification for employment of road "safety" personnel

Reducing speeding doesn't even knock on the door of their purpose, meanwhile all manner of other dangerous driving can be conducted at or below the limit.
Maybe its because we're all too busy looking out for the cameras strategically placed / hidden behind road signs / trees etc. instead of "looking properly" at the road we're driving on
An excellent point.
Driving through the village of Hoghton, near Preston, you'll see a series of signs mounted on the street light poles (if they are still there).
Sign 1 reads: "If a child" Sign 2 reads "ran out here" Sign 3 reads "Could you stop?"
I commented to the wife "Not likely, I was too busy reading the signs!"

Another example was spotted in Cheshire by myself last week. A large billboard visable directly ahead of you, with a anti-speeding poster. The poster attracts your attention with the tag line "Hang out with your mates" and three young lads in a crashed car with what appears to be bits missing from their heads letting their brains "hang out." The attention grabbing nature to the driver means that in looking at the poster, you nearly drive through a roundabout without realising. I wasn't speeding and managed to stop in time.

As long as so called road "safety" partnerships continue to rely on static/mobile speed cameras (100% in the case of Lancashire), nothing will ever improve.

chuks
1st Oct 2006, 19:32
There must be someone here able to pull this stuff up with the click of a button, so that my question is: What are the percentages for accidents in the various EU countries and the USA?

I am afraid that the German numbers are not good, but are they worse than, for example, the UK with its many speed cameras?

I guess I just don't have the vast respect for human life of some of you folks, so that I think careless driving can have a certain value as a crude form of population control, so long as it's single-vehicle accidents. Too, there was that State Trooper in the States who came down with testicular cancer from a leaky speed gun he was wont to stow between his legs for quick access... God's judgement upon the wicked or what?

All you fans of radar, I wish you much happiness from your stupid little boxes! When I am caged up in a car I shall go about in fear and trembling of just retribution. That would be when my wife gets a citation through the mail with my picture behind the wheel.

Meanwhile, when I am on my motorcycle I tend to say, 'Pah!' and blow my nose in the general direction of your radar, at least when it leaves the authorities trying bootlessly to figure out just which one of the un-numbered many I personally might be. On the other hand I go in fear and trembling of the little, old, half-blind dears driving Ford Fiestas who 'just didn't see' me. It is not that they speed but just that they do tend to kill now and then.

Radar won't sort that one out, nor the drinkers nor the badly trained, so that I think it might be time to take a step back from this simple notion that 'speed kills' to have a deeper thought about road safety.

A modest proposition is to require all road users to wear crash helmets, since head injuries cause the most crash fatalities among car drivers. If it is okay to force bikers to wear them, why should the rest of you be exempt?

I will make you a deal: you all wear helmets and I will paint my 'particulars' on the front of my bike!

G-CPTN
1st Oct 2006, 19:45
COULD the situation in Germany be slanted by inclusion of the former East Germany? Prior to re-unification, car ownership was low, and vehicle performance was lower. I'm PRESUMING that many drivers today are relatively inexperienced.

TBirdFrank
1st Oct 2006, 23:52
Tonight Mr Lexx picked us up from the Apollo in Manchester and gave us a lift home to save us running the risk of having our car broken into, as had happened to at least one car we saw after the concert.

He commented that he had all but run down a youth on the way in.

On the way back in sunny Gorton said youth appeared again - running amongst the traffic and happy slapping cars - especially ones that had come uncomfortably close!!!

We last saw him heading for some stock car drivers who had come from Belle Vue - I hope they spannered him.

If we had hit him it would have been nasty motorist and popular well liked schoolchild and not a speed camera or traffic cop in sight

There are lies damned lies and statistics, and how many road deaths are down to reckless walking in all its guises?

chuks
2nd Oct 2006, 10:53
That is definitely a German thing, careless walking!

I have had people walking down the sidewalk just hang a left to step out in front of the car, since there was a pedestrian crossing there. Never mind the idea of 'stop and signal your intention to cross the road,' since 'pedestrians have right-of-way,' let alone, 'look before you cross.'

Another favourite is walking behind a car from the driver's blind side when reversing. I look both ways, start reversing and 'Hoppla!' here are two boxheads with pissed-off expressions who have walked right behind my car that was obviously backing up. They would have been hidden from view by the parked cars left and right, of course. Some of these German clowns seem to live for putting someone else in the wrong, even when that might carry some personal risk.

It all ties in together in my mind, the ignorance of practicalities in favour of small-minded application of rules, a perfect case for the use of radar above all else. Never mind if the road is either deserted in brilliant sunshine or else packed with traffic in the dark of a thunderstorm; the limit is whatever the limit is and the box can measure that perfectly and then spit out a penalty without human thought or intervention. Every so often there is a mass collision in thick fog when everyone was observing the posted limit rather than a safe speed.

One that I notice fairly often, out on the 'Autobahn,' is blowing past another car on an unlimited stretch of road and then being overtaken in a limited sector, when I am observing the limit. Then the limit is lifted and I take off at 120-130 mph, only to again be overtaken when it's limited. What is that all about?

Solid Rust Twotter
2nd Oct 2006, 11:09
In SA pedestrians account for around 40% of road accident deaths. A lot of the time these occur at night along busy highways and quite often the victims are drunk.

The cameras continue to catch motorists doing 70km/h in a 60 zone which happens to be four lanes wide and clear of other traffic.:hmm:

eal401
2nd Oct 2006, 12:31
There are lies damned lies and statistics, and how many road deaths are down to reckless walking in all its guises?
A young boy was killed a few months ago on the bypass near where I now live. Cue tearful mum railing against speeding etc. It eventually comes out that the white van that hit him was doing just under 60mph and he was playing chicken with it.

A group of lads die on the A59, their car spinning off the road and breaking in two against a tree. Cue tearful father railing against dangerous road. Turns out the late-driver was doing 100+ mph.

Both tearful people go remarkably quiet when the truth comes out!! :)

Grandpa
2nd Oct 2006, 18:11
My opinion is made on this subject and I won't bore you anymore with it.

About other dangerous ways of driving (drinking, no license, no insurance, unability for medical or other reasons...) I agree they have to be considered and stopped by any means.

Here it has been admitted by everybody that the main cause for accidents was speed driving, but I agree that in other countries drivers may be more law abiding than our nationals.

Have you got any stats about accidents causes in UK, Germany.....because it's useless to exchange unbased personnal views, often reflecting the refusal of individuals to take their responsibility?

Curious Pax
2nd Oct 2006, 18:24
Interesting point about Germany Chuks - my experience (mostly from runs past Arnehm in NL towards Dusseldorf/Cologne/Frankfurt, but also up to Hamburg) is that most German motorists are pretty observant of speed limits (much more so than in the UK). It takes a bit of getting used to after they have had the foot to the floor in the unrestricted bits. Doesn't seem to make a difference whether the limits are full time ones or temporary. This would skew the comparison with the UK somewhat, as would my belief (unsubstantiated) that when they have collisions on unrestricted autobahns they tend to be bad ones. Unsurprising when so many BMWs/Mercs/Audis are doing well over 100mph - the speed with which they scream past me when I'm doing 90mph can be unnerving.

G-CPTN
2nd Oct 2006, 19:47
A young boy was killed a few months ago on the bypass near where I now live.
Recently a 17 year old girl was killed when she was crossing the (motorway) highway between opposite Service Areas. A1M, Washington Services.

chuks
2nd Oct 2006, 19:58
Where does it read here that we have all agreed that speed is a major factor in accidents? That just isn't so, even though it is used as the rationale for radar speed cameras! If someone here likes the idea of radar speed cameras, well, 'to each his own,' but many of us would dispute that they are of much use except as a rather low way to make money.

It's just too simplistic to state that, 'Speed Kills!' or enjoin people to, 'Drive Slowly,' and think something useful has been achieved. It is much more complicated than that.

I remember one jerk who came out of his parking place and nearly had me off my bike. When I had speaks with him he started ranting about how I was 'going too fast,' when I had been doing all of 20 mph; otherwise I wouldn't have been able to avoid him. Most people have been taught to believe that speed, per se, is dangerous and makes one culpable. It can be dangerous, yes, but there are many other risk factors as well that it might do well to think about.

It has got to the point now in Germany, at least, where some local limits are set at 15 kilometres per hour. That is too low to be read on many speedometers!

Another one is to set the limit at 80 because of a 'bad road.' Brilliant! Don't fix the road, just set a low speed and then back that up with some radar traps. You save money on the roads and make some extra on the fines. People look at an open road and think 'WTF?' until they get blitzed. Sometimes you get a limit of 80, then it goes to 100, then up to 120 and then down to 80, all on basically the same road... you get the definite idea someone is having a joke.

You even see the authorities making roads more dangerous with strips of tar so that bikers will not 'speed.' No, when it rains they lose control on the slick tar and crash instead, but that's not such a problem, somehow.

The brainiest one I have seen is to build these big, bushy areas into roundabouts so that traffic slows down. Well, 'D'oh!' You cannot see what is coming, never mind the speed, so that you have created a much greater risk of collision in the name of slowing people down because 'Speed kills.'

In the States it is often the case that the State Police investigate aircraft accidents. I once had a chat with a Virginia State Trooper after a student and I modified a Cessna. The first thing he asked me was, 'How fast were you going at the time of the accident?' The corrrect answer would have been, 'Not bloody fast enough!' since we had had a windshear encounter but never mind.

Remember the old joke, 'Don't take any chances; fly low and slow!' Well, if speed kills, then I must be living on borrowed time!

Heliport
2nd Oct 2006, 21:27
Grandpa
Here it has been admitted by everybody that the main cause for accidents was speed driving

I assume by 'here', you mean in France - not here in this thread.

Does "everybody" in France really agree with that? :confused:

Grainger
2nd Oct 2006, 22:19
OK. This time of year it's getting dark around 7pm.

Tonight it was gloomy, raining, and at about that time I went past a bunch of flowers at the roadside. Very sad.

Within the next ten minutes I spotted no fewer than half a dozen cyclists wearing dark clothing and no lights :eek:

Now I understand where those flowers came from.

So whose responsibility is the safety ? Easiest to just blame the motorist again and put up some more cameras I suppose :yuk:

Human Factor
2nd Oct 2006, 23:38
The French authorities actually used speed cameras/radar for a genuine road safety reason. In the UK, speed cameras have two purposes.

It rather depends whether you're hooning up the Autoroute towards Calais to get to your ferry on time. They're as bad as anyone else. You'll be met at the peage and invited to cough up.

panda-k-bear
3rd Oct 2006, 12:20
Grandpa, this morning I drove to Blagnac airport to start the delivery process for my company's latest hairyplane. As I did so, it was dark, it was raining extremely heavily and the wind was a good 40 to 50 km/h. In other words, awful. I was driving on a 2 lane road at about 50 km/h in a long stream of traffic. The speed limit is 90 km/h. I was passed by another car who continued to pass the long stream of cars. He was NOT exceeding the speed limit (whether that be 90km/h or 80 km/h because it was raining), so no "radar" would have caught him. There was no way he could possibly avoid a car if it had been coming towards him - the rain was so bad he simply would not have seen it.

So tell me, would he have been perfectly OK because he was not speeding?

Or, do you think, one of the biggest killers in France is the INAPPROPRIATE use of speed - going too fast when the road conditions are not good enough?

Grandpa
3rd Oct 2006, 14:33
Panda, your message is the perfect illustration of what I typed above:

Radar are a wonderfull tool to increase safety on the roads, and this has been admitted by everybody "here".

At least we consider that driving above speed limit is not only "inapropriate" but dangerous.

Now radar can't correct everythying, and the fact to refuse reducing speed under adverse conditions is one of the dangerous attitude you meet too often on our roads.

Respect speed limits, reduce your speed in bad weather (storms, fog, snow.....) and you will protect other's lives..........and your's too.

panda-k-bear
4th Oct 2006, 10:02
So tell me, grandpa, what is more dangerous?

Driving at 140km/h on the A20 in the summer, perfectly dry and not too much traffic?

Or

Driving at 90 (or 80) km/h in the conditions I described above?

One is perfectly legal. The other is not.

The "radar" will issue a prosecution for one, but not the other.

Will it issue a prosecution for the most dangerous one?

Grandpa
4th Oct 2006, 17:07
What is the most dangerous?

Flying at 320IAS in terminal control area when nobody else is in the area.....

or at 250IAS in same area with a lot of arrival/departure all around you?

We have to understand driving and flying (I hope it's allready done for the last activity) are not only determined by individual ability, reflex, eyes.....but also , more and more by discipline in a global transport system.

Driving is no more a source of pleasure on our roads.
People who want to test their driving championship grade have now to use Formula I circuits.

Those who still do it on our roads are kind of last examples of an extincted species.

panda-k-bear
5th Oct 2006, 12:38
Answered like a true politician. "I don't really like your question, so I'm going to answer a different one".

I take it that because your "radar" (radars can't take pictures by the way, cameras do that bit) can't detect the 90 km/h in the wet and dark, that's OK then. Is that what you're saying?

Cameras are absolute. They can not apply common sense. They are, by definition, dumb and unthinking.

They do not promote safety.

Why is a French autoroute more dangerous as an integrated transport system than a German, derestricted, autobhan? Why are the speed limits different? Are the Germans better at building roads than the French? So that the Germans don't need speed limits on some of their road network whereas France does?

Grandpa
5th Oct 2006, 17:12
About comparison with German roads, I could flatly tell you I didn't drive on Germa autobahn recently, and I remember only that they were somehow less safe than ours decades ago (curves, slopes...).

The problem isn't on the roads, it is in driver's mind, and I think German drivers had better driving habits and training than our French kamikaze type.
(as I remember they usually gave way to faster cars and were also eager to reduce speed when needed).

Now if you still believe you can drive above speed limit at night, you could have a big surprise if you try it here..................

bjcc
5th Oct 2006, 22:22
panda-k-bear

Quote:

"Cameras are absolute. They can not apply common sense. They are, by definition, dumb and unthinking.

They do not promote safety."

Yes, they are dumb, but they are not designed or intended to be anything but.

As for promoting safety? Well, in some cases you may be right. In others I don't think you are. For example, there is one near where I live, before it was there, there was around 1 accident a week.

There have been none since it was installed, the reason why is that people reduce speed for the camera, then relaise that there is a hazard beyond the camera in the shape of a mini roundabout (If you were looking you can see it 1/2 mile away) The cause of accidents there was 2 fold. cars on the road the camera was on being driven too fast, and not the driver not taking any notice of the roundabout markings and taking the right action in time.

The speed camera (Which if I'm honest I think is a dud) causes traffic to slow down, it therefore does promote safety.


The much mentioned report over causes of accidents, if correct, say that the cause is inattention. Ok, if that is correct, then trying to keep speed down makes a great deal of sense, if people can't pay attention at the speed limit, then above that they will still have accidents, but in doing so will cause much more damage and injury.

On a general point, it occurs to me that if the theory about speeding fines being a form of taxation, you'd expect to see every Police car fitted with a camera, which would catch 100's a day for each partol car. Thats not the case though is it.

NutLoose
6th Oct 2006, 07:29
But Grandpa, in the Uk, the number of cameras has increased dramatically over the past few years, but the number of accidents hasn't fallen.
All that has happened, is that the number of police on the roads has fallen, so more and more drivers are failing to get stopped or prosecuted for other offences that cameras don't detect. (dangerous driving, no insurance, licence etc).

There are an estimated 1 in 20 cars on the road in the UK, being driven without valid insurance, and an awful lot of people do not even register their vehicles.
Neither of these groups of people have anything to fear from speed cameras, but they are far more dangerous that someone driving 3mph over the limit.


Totally agree with that, stick the road tax on fuel then no one can dodge it and you pay as you use the road, that will kill that problem over night, free up court time, get rid of all the beaurocracy then replace the tax disc with an insurance one.

As for speed cameras head on put the sunvisor down, that masks the face. I do remember a case of the police using photoshop to enhance the numberplate so they could read it.......... talk about tampering with evidence..


As for the safety of these things, remember the case of the man who built a dovecot/pidgeon house at the end his garden in the shape of a speed camera, ( main dual carraige way over the fence) he was forced to remove it on the grounds it was a traffic hazard and dangerous.

panda-k-bear
6th Oct 2006, 10:36
Ah, two points, here, then:

Grandpa, yours first:

In the dark - no I was referring to travelling at 90km/h on a road with a speed limit of 90km/h in the wet and the dark as I did the other morning - read my earlier posts. The driver would not have been caught by the radar / camera because he was obeying the speed limit. BUT - the speed limit was not appropriate for the conditions and his driving was dangerous - due to the condtions - even if what he was doing was, strictly speaking, legal.

bjcc, your turn:

A nice example - A52 in Lincolnshire. A so called "red route". Big signs comparing number of deaths this year compared to the last year. Has some speed cameras, has had for about 5 years. Grand. Road deaths declined on the A52 for the previous 5 years - except this year, they have gone up. By quite a lot. Why? I don't know - I suspect neither do you. But, 12 months or so ago, the speed limit on that road was reduced in some areas - yes, those areas where the cameras are. Reduce the speed limit, accident and death rate goes up. Hmmm. Bizarre, n'est-ce pas?

Grandpa
6th Oct 2006, 15:52
Variable speed limit on every segment of the road, automatically adjusted to conditions at the moment (temperature, moisture, wind, rain, snow, drizzle,...).

Automated radars, camera, adjusted second after second to these conditions.

Does'it meet your requirement?

panda-k-bear
6th Oct 2006, 16:16
Grandpa, I would rather that you answered your own question. the answer, logically, is yes. But can the human brain cope with it? Is it truly enforcable?

It's already complex enough in France with 2 speed limits on the roads. On the autoroute (or on a normal road for that matter), what is the definition of a wet road? If the surface is damp, is that enough? What if it is not actually raining? What if it is raining very slightly but not enough to make the road wet? When exactly do I have to, by law, reduce my speed from 130 km/h to 110 on an autoroute or 90 km/h to 80 km/h on a normal road (which is already a law in France, but it's a rule which is often ignored anyway)?

bjcc
6th Oct 2006, 21:56
panda-k-bear

I'm not sure what you are trying to prove.

The signs display the number of deaths along the whole A52? Or the bits with cameras? What was the number of deaths/Accidents in the parts where there are cameras 5 years ago? And what are they today? What are the numbers on the stretches not covered by cameras, again 5 years ago and what are they now?

Are those that are killed locals? Or are they peoplel who don't know the locations of cameras? Again for both areas.

You see what you have said in connection with that road, proves nothing, one way or the other. Add in the information I asked for and it might, again, either way.

The examples you set Gandpa, are also misleading. What you consider safe, I may not. and of course vice versa. I take your point, that that speed may be dangerous, or inapporpiate, but legal as far as the speed limit is concerned. But I use the word MAY.

The idea of speed cameras was to release Traffic Police to other Traffic related duties. There are the same number of traffic in the force I was in, before speed cameras, as there are now. So it has achieved that purpose. How they gainfully, or otherwise spend thier day I can't say for sure, but if they act the same way as they did when I was a policeman, they are finding people to report for traffic offences. The difference being less so now for speeding.

Going back to your point over traffic cameras being unthinking, I agree. There is, as I have said before, room for discression to be used after the picture has been taken, and before a FPN is issued, ie once the driver is known. Why it was decided that there would be no warnings issued for a band of speeding above the limit, or one which changed depending on the time of day, I have no idea, I do however think that would have been a better way.

G-CPTN
6th Oct 2006, 22:35
The A68 from (near) Scotch Corner to Edinburgh is a cross-country (north-south) route. There are accidents, often fatal, along its length. Statistics posted alongside the road highlight the number of casualties (but these are unclear and historic). The road passes through Durham (who employ NO fixed speed cameras), Northumberland (who have no cameras on the A68, though have erected camera warning signs) and Lothian and Borders who have peppered the potential overtaking places with speed cameras. Collisions are almost always as a result of overtaking in inopportune (often dangerous) places, and, whilst speed may well affect the outcome of the collision, it is not, IMO the primary cause. The cameras on the Scottish section do NOT, IMO, contribute towards safety, in fact the converse, as motorists are therefore tempted to overtake AWAY from the camera locations, which, as I have said, are placed in all the places where a competant driver would contemplate overtaking, but is dissuaded by the sight of the camera. Traffic speeds are typically 55mph (as nobody wants to risk triggering the camera set at 60mph) and bunching is therefore exaccerbated. Of course there ARE those who don't see the cameras until the last minute, who then brake violently (witness the tyre-marks on the highway) and aim to return to the near side, forcing themselves back into the stream of vehicles.
I fail to see the logic of this policy, other than to terrorise the motorist into remaining BELOW the legal limit for this road (and catching those who are unfamiliar with the presence of the cameras).

Here's one of the cameras (can you spot it?):-
http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c19/GroupCaptain/LaudercameraC.jpg

AcroChik
6th Oct 2006, 22:41
Yellow thingie to the left of the shoulder, past the guard rail.

To my way of thinking, hiding the cameras is stoopid.

Here in NY State, traffic cops put out portable digital displays and move them around from place to place (I've also seen them in suburban California). They're BIG... and are mounted on a two-wheeled trailer. As you approach the sign, you can easily see the words YOUR SPEED in big black letters on a signal yellow background. A radar gun on the thing posts your current speed in BIG orange numbers on a display. Everyone slows down ~ no matter how fast ~ or slow ~ they're driving. There's no camera, you don't get a summons in the mail. It works.

pall
11th Oct 2006, 06:35
In Victoria the fine is sent to the registered owner. A woman in a rural city was sent a fine for her car which was unregistered and confined to her farm as an an unroadworthy paddock bomb. Only capable of very low speeds and never leaves the farm.

She asked to view the picture. Police refused. She took them to court and won.:)

eal401
11th Oct 2006, 07:02
There have been none since it was installed, the reason why is that people reduce speed for the camera, then relaise that there is a hazard beyond the camera in the shape of a mini roundabout (If you were looking you can see it 1/2 mile away) The cause of accidents there was 2 fold. cars on the road the camera was on being driven too fast, and not the driver not taking any notice of the roundabout markings and taking the right action in time.

A perfect example of "stick a speed camera up rather than address the core issue." One can readily assume that a camera was cheaper than any re-engineering works? Then again, most road improvement schemes round these parts simply make things even more dangerous!

What I want to know is how Lincolnshire was able to reduce road accidents with once resorting to any form of speed camera. (And I wish they'd share the intell with the lazy "safety" partnerships.)

Buster Hyman
11th Oct 2006, 07:10
This (http://www.fightfines.info/) is a rather interesting site that, whilst directed at Victorian drivers & laws, it has some interesting points on how a cars speed can vary due to tyre pressure, wheel circumfrence, load in the car and also speedo displays.:ok:

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 09:12
Here's one of the cameras (can you spot it?)That is very naughty indeed. Actually the whole speed camera setup is very naughty, but that really takes it to a new level. The only real way to see it are the markings on the road. I bet the view to the front is kept clear of branches though...

Pan Pan Splash
11th Oct 2006, 10:05
I just think anyone who believes speed cameras are installed to improve safety is an arse.

1. Its revenue.

Therefore..

2. It should be seen as a game, like your annula tax bill. you get a ticket, you wriggle like **** to get out of it.

3. Better still if I owned a car dealership, I'd fit every car with with a speed camera detector, and just stick the £200 cost on the price of the car.. bet I'd sell loads of cars and no-one would quibble at an extra 200 notes on the price of a motor...

what do you think??

Coconutty
11th Oct 2006, 10:10
On a stretch of road near me the other day was one of those Temporary Speed Camera mobile vans :uhoh: - 500 metres before a FIXED camera on a 60 MPH stretch of single carriageway - So if they are supposed to be "Safety" cameras is this an admission that the Fixed camera is in the wrong place :rolleyes: ?

NO - The locals know where the Fixed camera is, so they are trying to catch those that don't slow down until the last minute :=

By the way - in CPTN's pic - That isn't a Camera van parked up AFTER the hidden fixed camera is it :suspect: ?

"Safety" cameras are those described by AcroChik - the one's that give out indiscriminate fines are NOT :oh:

http://i34.photobucket.com/albums/d129/coconut11/Coconutty.jpg

eal401
11th Oct 2006, 12:54
1. Its revenue.

Not just. Road safety partnerships have no desire to reduce accidents, each dead body in the morgue justifies their existence. Hence positioning cameras where capture is more likely, boosts the figures and "justifies" their continued employment.

You'll see this is you see a road on a slope equipped with a camera. There may have been an equal number of accidents on both sides of the road, yet the camera will target traffic on the downhill side. (E.g. A6 London Road in Preston)

3. Better still if I owned a car dealership, I'd fit every car with with a speed camera detector, and just stick the £200 cost on the price of the car.. bet I'd sell loads of cars and no-one would quibble at an extra 200 notes on the price of a motor...


An excellent idea, you are ensuring that cars do not speed through accident blackspots................surely?

G-CPTN
11th Oct 2006, 14:44
Refering to my photo of the speed camera above, can anyone justify the LOCATION of the camera (and I'm NOT talking about being hidden in the trees)?
As I said, these cameras (in Lothian and Borders Region) are positioned wherever there is a potential overtaking possibility. If you CAN'T overtake in a location like this (because of fear of being photographed), just where do you think motorists WILL attempt their overtaking manoeuvres?

LowNSlow
11th Oct 2006, 14:47
Nice skidmarks on the road in front of the camera in G-CPTN's pic. Wonder if he/she got a ticket?

On the M4 near Newport they've stopped putting the camera van on the bridge. Now they hide it in the bushes and have a little camera over each lane mounted on a near invisible little tripod. Lucky I scrutinise every bridge when driving near the viper's nest in Newport!

Just to stay on thread; yes I think the majority are cash generators; yes I think they should be on the approach roads to every school, hospital and accident blackspot and very clearly marked. They have no place on the final 100 yards of a mile long straight. I also think there should be a discretionary cut off. I also think that there should be an anemometer and rain detector in each one that removes any discretionary increment over the posted limit when the weather is bad based on the fact that one probably should not be doing the speed limit in bad weather anyway.

AcroChik
11th Oct 2006, 14:52
In the picture, there's a gentle rise to a slight right-hand bend at which the road then seems to descend. A car coming around that bend toward you wouldn't be fully in view. Depending on the combined closing speed, that car could appear very quickly.

I don't think this would be the best place to pass someone as, moving out to the right, one's view of the bend and anything coming over the gentle rise would be obscured by the more acute angle of view from the right lane.

There are skid marks in the left lane... from braking? On some rural roads you see these made by kids playing at spinning tires. So, can't judge that ~ at least I can't... I'm no expert..

This might be a good spot to put a solid line indication not to pass, rather than a speed trap.

HUH! Have I got this whole thing turned around because I drive on the "wrong" side of the road?

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 15:03
G-CPTN,can anyone justify the LOCATION of the camera Notwithstanding the difficulties of evaluating a 3D setting from a 2D picture, that looks like a nasty bit of road and overtaking would be extremely dangerous. The marks on the road are in the opposite lane so I assume the camera is set up to capture your speed when overtaking too. I reckon anybody overtaking there, and especially at over 60mph (which I assume the speed limit is) would be a nutter and getting them on film would be a good thing to do.

So probably the picture you post is an example of a well placed camera, it could take a photo of what might be classed as somebody driving dangerously and not simply speeding. Now if it took your picture in the left lane I wouldn't be so enthusiastic, it might be perfectly safe to take that corner at 70mph if you were on the correct side of the road.

Grainger
11th Oct 2006, 15:15
Disagree, s_s.

The broken centreline would appear to indicate that the Highways Authority do not consider it a dangerous location to overtake. If it were otherwise, they would put a double solid white line down the centreline. I think you are being misled by the perspective of a wideangle lens which makes the bend appear more severe than it is in real life. I can certainly see the road disappearing into the far distance so there doesn't appear to be a visibility problem.

I am familiar with the route in question and can confirm what G-CPTN says - the cameras are placed at safe overtaking spots. The net effect is the exact opposite of what is claimed - people can't overtake safely so traffic bunches, creating a very dangerous condition and causing drivers to become frustrated.

There are some dangerous bends and spots on that road where it really wouldn't be safe to overtake, and guess what ? No cameras there !

AcroChik
11th Oct 2006, 15:20
Hmm... maybe I need to think about this a little more.

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 15:33
I think you are being misled by the perspective of a wideangle lens which makes the bend appear more severe than it is in real life. I can certainly see the road disappearing into the far distance so there doesn't appear to be a visibility problem.So I am being misled by the picture, but looking at the same picture you aren't. Ha Ha Ha, that isn't going to wash.

Zooming into the picture I am even more certain that is a nasty bit of road. As I said, it's hard to tell. However G-CPTN put the picture up and asked us what he thought about the picture so in the spirit debate that is what I am doing. There should be enough visual info in there for somebody with a knowledge of photo evaluation to come up with an opinion.

Edited to add that the camera doesn't take a picture of the driver's face so even if it does catch somebody overtaking dangerously there should be another one in front to identify the driver, and I cannot see that.

panda-k-bear
11th Oct 2006, 16:07
slim_slag - please read what Grainger actually wrote. He said he is familiar with that piece of road, therefore he's not judging it by the photograph alone. If one actually knows the road in question then perhaps one is in a better position to judge, wouldn't you say?

I don't know where you live but in the U.K. speed cameras can take images from the back only or from the front only, not both. However, the vehicle is identified by the number plate and the NIP sent to the person owning the vehicle - hence the whole point of this thread! The owner wasn't necessarily driving.

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 16:49
slim_slag - please read what Grainger actually wrote.I did better than that, I quoted what he wrote. He made an interpretation based upon the picture I can certainly see the road disappearing into the far distance so there doesn't appear to be a visibility problem.yet he told me my interpretation was incorrect because of the way the picture was taken. I don't see the road disappearing into the far distance, I see it disappearing after three telegraph poles at maximum, and that car is just about to disappear and it doesn't look that far away to me. I stand by my response.

I know what the thread is about, as my earlier posts should demonstrate.

Grainger
11th Oct 2006, 17:08
Think you need a photography lesson, s_s. You may have quoted it, but you didn't seem to take on board the comment about the effect of the wideangle lens.

AcroChik
11th Oct 2006, 17:33
I don't know much ~ or anything ~ about photography and optics (well, just a college physics course and that's not easily translatable to an actual picture), but even allowing for a change perspective by a lens... I've counted the telephone poles. It's really not so far to the "end" of the road, is it? Maybe G-C will stop by once again and add his insights.

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 17:55
Think you need a photography lesson, s_s. You may have quoted it, but you didn't seem to take on board the comment about the effect of the wideangle lens.I don't have to. What I said was "I don't see the road disappearing into the far distance, I see it disappearing after three telegraph poles at maximum,". So, you claim to know the road, how far away from the speed camera is the white vehicle?

As your claims are also based upon you knowing the route you can also let us know where the camera is located so I can look at the lay of the land using google earth or similar. So a location to the nearest mile would be nice too.

Grainger
11th Oct 2006, 18:16
Don't be silly. I said that I am familiar with the route - I didn't say that I've been down there this afternoon with a tape measure and a portable GPS :rolleyes:

I also did not claim to be the person who took the picture. The one in the photo could be one of the many locations along this road:

http://www.speedcamerasuk.com/database/SCB/scb002.htm

However, if it's satellite photos you're after these ones on the A68 look pretty straight to me:

http://www.speedcameramap.co.uk/index.php?lt=55.693261431606885&ln=-2.7113914489746094&zm=3

http://www.speedcameramap.co.uk/index.php?lt=55.693261431606885&ln=-2.7113914489746094&zm=3

Flying Lawyer
11th Oct 2006, 18:33
s_s

I'm puzzled.
Why do you think it "looks like a nasty bit of road"?

No 'hazard' centre line markings.
Furthest telegraph pole, after the road bends, shows that the bend isn't tight (at least on entry.)
The road appears to follow the terrain - around the raised land on the right.
No hazard chevrons on entry to the bend.


To me, it looks like a normal single carriagway country road without any unusual hazard - except the hidden camera which, judging by the skid marks has caught or almost caught someone out fairly recently before the picture was taken.


(I agree overtaking while approaching any bend that you can't see round is dangerous.)

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 18:35
Ah, so when you said I think you are being misled by the perspective of a wideangle lens which makes the bend appear more severe than it is in real life you don't actually know what the bend looks like in real life. So the lens might also be making the bend look safer than it really is? You don't actually know do you?

So count the telegraph poles. The brow of the hill you can see is not very far from the camera at all. At 140 mph closing speed with somebody coming in the opposite direction up a road you cannot see you could very quickly get into a lot of trouble. That might be an excellent place for a camera to catch people overtaking at high speed in a dangerous location. You should have an open mind, not every camera in the UK is bad, just far too many of them.

FL, it is a combination of the road appears to fall off a cliff together with the bend which looking at the third pole appears to be tighter than others on here think it is. I know of plenty of places where there are no chevrons or the centre markings are, imo, not correct. This is especially the case on lesser travelled roads.

Grainger
11th Oct 2006, 18:48
s_s You are the one who is claiming to be able to see hills and cliffs in the photograph.

You are the one who claims to be able to tell that it is a "nasty piece of road" and "extremely dangerous".

When was the last time you drove that route ?

Mr Lexx
11th Oct 2006, 19:09
I would hapilly overtake there, sweeping right handers give you the best possible view for overtaking

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 19:22
Well, what a palava. Now I know why my car insurance is so high, and I haven't claimed ever. I think it's a good assumption that single lane carriageways are dangerous until proven otherwise, and that picture doesn't prove it's safe, and if anything it raises the possibility that it is unsafe. Why are they dangerous? Because you have idiots coming the other way who do think they are safe. What's happened to defensive driving?

There are plenty of police drivers on this site, what do they think?

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m258/slim_slag/proon/A68Camera.jpg

Mr Lexx
11th Oct 2006, 19:37
S_S, if the stretch of road was dangerous, the centre line would be solid telling you not to overtake. The police drivers will think exactly the same thing. If the overtaking is not wreckless, it is perfectly legal. Reading your posts makes me think you are the kind of person that accellerates when someone is trying to overtake you......

Are you related to A330******?? you seem to use the same logic and absolute denial when faced with facts.

CaptainFillosan
11th Oct 2006, 19:48
AFAIK, it is a requirement by law that the police have to ensure that all cameras are VISIBLE in every sense of the word. This instance is worth a complaint to the HQ of that particular constabulary with a copy to the DoT.

Indeed, I feel that if it is seen that it appears to be the slightest bit sneaky, then you may get your points and your money back. You never know!

G-CPTN
11th Oct 2006, 19:57
Grainger has correctly identified the location of the camera (a couple of miles south of Lauder):-
http://www.speedcameramap.co.uk/index.php?lt=55.693261431606885&ln=-2.7113914489746094&zm=3

Zoom OUT and you will see that the camera is in the middle of a long 'straight' section of road, and most overtakers would be well through the overtaking manouevre by the point from where the photograph is taken.
I took the photograph (on my return south) as I had been 'caught-out' by the position of the camera when travelling north. I was travelling alone (ie clear of any other traffic) and was 'relaxed' and had allowed my speed to creep marginally above the 60mph limit. I braked when I saw the lines on the road (at the last minute - I was concentrating on the clear view on a pleasant day rather than my speedometer) and was 'annoyed' by this 'trap'. I took the photograph for use in my defence 'mitigation' though I never received a NIP. (I don't know whether I triggered the camera, I was reacting to the sudden appearance of the speed camera (as had others before me) by braking first and looking afterwards.
Speed cameras in the UK are not SUPPOSED to be 'hidden'.

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 20:10
Reading your posts makes me think you are the kind of person that accellerates when someone is trying to overtake you......Just goes to show you haven't read my posts then :ok: you seem to use the same logic and absolute denial when faced with facts.Nobody has presented any facts, myself included. We are talking about a picture and presenting different opinions about what it means. And lines in the road never mean things are safe. Ever.

G-CPTN
11th Oct 2006, 20:37
Here's a view of the stretch of road in question. The speed camera is in the trees just beyond the cottage. http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c19/GroupCaptain/Laudercamera016.jpg
IMO, this presents an opportunity for overtaking at 60mph. The difficulty arises when you 'spot' the camera and automatically react by taking your eyes off the road onto the speedometer coincident with applying the brakes, being uncertain about exactly how close you might be to (or over) 60mph.

brain fade
11th Oct 2006, 20:52
Looks like an absolutely perfect (and safe) place to pass a slower vehicle.

Which is exactly why there is a scamera there.:mad: Wan*ers!

frostbite
11th Oct 2006, 20:56
Not a perfect overtaking spot but damn close and good enough for me.

slim_slag
11th Oct 2006, 21:03
G-CPTN, Again, notwithstanding the problems of commenting on a 3D location using a 2D picture.

Your second picture is taken from quite a long way before your original picture and doesn't add to the previous discussion. What is needed is a picture of the road taken from close to where the white vehicle is in your first picture.

Your new picture shows a stretch of road where, IMO, overtaking opportunities exist. However I suspect there is a side road next to the cottage and that presents potential hazard.

I still think you need to be in the left lane by the time you reach the speed camera. This new photo does not in anyway change my opinion on whether you should be overtaking on the stretch of road identified by your first picture, that is you shouldn't.

I can see what you mean about the camera being hidden. If you were still overtaking when you got to the camera you would instinctively brake and that might not be good. Maybe hiding the camera is in this example safer?
Oh my, I can tell Mr Lexx is going to be apoplectic, lol.

For what it's worth :) Still want to hear what a police driver thinks.

Oh and PS, you linked map suggests there is quite a nasty (oops) left hander just beyond the vehicle in your first picture. There is no scale on your map but it appears to be quite close. Everybody is talking about a sweeping right hand bend, but they might get a shock when they come across a left hander. Best to be defensive and not overtake if you don't know what's ahead - which appears to have been shown to be the case from your first picture.

For what it's worth.

bjcc
11th Oct 2006, 21:04
From the perspective and distortion, the phot appears to have been taken with a wide angle lens. It really doesn't therefore represent what a driver would see, in terms of distance. If it had been taken with a 50mm lens (on a 35mm camera) it would have given a better idea.

I'd agree with FL, it does not seem to be a particualaly steep bend, and the centre lane markings are not the hazard type.

I would guess therefore it would be a bend you could take at speed, and maybe thats where the issue is, if you can take it at speed from this direction, so can someone coming the other way Depending on how far the bend really is (as opposed to appears to be) that may well be the reason for that cameras siting.

G-CPTN, to say that the 'camera' forces' an overtake in areas that are unsafe, is misleading, no one forces anyone to speed, or drive dangerously, the driver decides.

G-CPTN
11th Oct 2006, 21:04
As Grainger confirmed, speed cameras are positioned at (almost) every location on A68 (between Carter Bar and Edinburgh) where overtaking would be possible. 'Tis a pain in the anus!

G-CPTN, to say that the 'camera' forces' an overtake in areas that are unsafe, is misleading, no one forces anyone to speed, or drive dangerously, the driver decides.
Agreed, but when you've been held behind a horse-box or HGV for maybe 20 miles @ 40mph (and been disuaded from overtaking opportunities due to 'fear' of triggering the speed cameras) the temptation to relieve frustration is difficult to resist. If traffic is 'heavy' (that is an exaggeration - read 'if there is traffic') I take the alternative A6088 / A7 (which has no cameras . . . ).

I suspect there is a side road next to the cottage and that presents potential hazard.
Only private access to the cottage (I parked there to take some of my photographs.)

eal401
12th Oct 2006, 07:00
The only hazard in the photo is, ultimately, the speed camera as indicated by the skid marks on the road.

The road markings permit overtaking if safe to do so, so unless the Highways Angency have cocked up......... oh....