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» One Touch Football - Archive » World » Cretins lose case, thank the skies (Page 3)

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Author Topic: Cretins lose case, thank the skies
Paul S
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I've worked with speed cameras and done loads of work to put them out and in some cases remove them. To put a speed camera in at a location requires a pretty good case and the laying of automatic traffic counters. The counters record the vehicle as it passes over it, classifies it (e.g. car, vam, lorry etc.) and records the speed. If it is proven that vehicles are speeding and that there is a high accident rate in the area, then a speed camera can go in, subject to the various surveyors reports saying it is okay to put one in at that location and that the road isn't excessively bendy at that point etc.

We used to get letters from the genreal public complaining about the cameras and how they were an infringement of their civil liberties and why weren't these vaulable resources being put into catching child killers instead of persecuting innocent motorists. We passed their comments on to the Essex constabulary and a nice civilian worker there would send them a reply pointing out that a third of all deaths under the age of 18 are caused by road accidents and that if you really want us to crack down on child killers then you should cut your speed.

Then there is the second type of letter. You've heard of NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard)? Well I've got a new one for you:

PIMBY

Please In My Back Yard

People wrote in begging for speed cameras to be put in their village / street / neighbourhood because people are speeding, using it as a rat run and does someone have to dies before something is done. Given that a road cannot be classified as being dangerous until someone is killed or injured, the the answer to that, unfortunately, is yes. When letters like this are receioved (normally via the local council, or the MP for Bladder-on-the-Water or wherever) then we would put the monitoring equipment out and you can start to look at the problem and this does lead to the installation of speed cameras


As for the fines being a way to raise money, what would you rather have?

3 points OR 60 fine
3 points OR 600 fine
3 points OR 1,000 fine
3 points OR 2,000 fine
3 points OR 5,000 fine

How many people would pay 1,000 to keep 3 points off their licence? Most would I reckon. Because 3 points is 3 points closer to losing your license and pushes your insurance up. Yet this is the only realistic deterrent and is the reason why people try an claim someone else was driving. Not to avoid paying a fine equivalent to a tank full of petrol.

Incidentally, I know a fool proof way of avoiding paying the fine. Don't speed. Simple really isn't it?

Posts: 2400 | From: Plastered over the Maplin Sands | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
blameless
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How many people would pay 1,000 to keep 3 points off their licence? Most would I reckon.

Nobody except millionaires who already have 10 points of endorsements would.

The stricter enforcement of speed limits these days means that far more drivers are carrying points around on their licences, meaning that the insurance premium hike for having 3 or 6 points isn't as steep as it once was (because insurance companies like making money more than helping keep the roads safe).

Add to this the fact that the points come off your licence again after 5 years, and forking over a grand to erase your guilt isn't financially viable.

The Chairman of the Bored makes an interesting point above - why are persistent offenders never given a life ban? I don't think we'll ever see that for two reasons: 1) because no government would have the courage to try to introduce it, and 2) because enforcing driving bans is difficult - people who think they have the right to drive through residential areas at 60mph occupy almost the exact same area on a venn diagram as people who think that the rules on driving without a licence or insurance don't apply to them.

[ 29.06.2007, 20:17: Message edited by: blameless ]

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Rogin the Armchair fan
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The ONLY defence for speeding through any restricted area (30 or 40) should be bad signage or unfamiliarity. The defendant should be given the opportunity to drive again through where they were caught, with the magistrate, and point out that the tiny sign by the side of the road that signalled a drop from 40 to 30, just ahead of the speed camera, but where it was placed at a point that no unfamiliar driver would be looking for speed limit signs or expect them to change (because there was no obvious change in the level of driving hazard), was a possible justification for them not realising (as they were, quite properly, driving by looking out ahead for potential hazards, not taking their eys off the road on the off-chance of spotting badly-placed speed limit signage). Lots of towns I've driven through - Stevenage, Salford, and Blackpool, for example - all suddenly drop speed limits on dual carriageways to 30 from 40, for absolutely no apparent reason than they've set cameras up.

Anyone doing 47 through a 30, of course, has no such defence (it would have been 40 in the zone before the 30 anyway) and deserves to put naked in the pillory in the town square for 24 hours so little children can throw rotten fruit at them and burn them in sensitive areas with their cigarette lighters.

I hasten to add I've NEVER been caught speeding, btw. But I have to hold my hands up to the use of the phrase "been caught" in that sentence.

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blameless
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Funny you should mention that, Rogin - the scenario you describe above is how I got my 3 points on my licence.

A stretch of road near my parents house which had been a 40 zone all my life was changed to a 30 without warning, and the police started enforcing it with unmarked camera cars before all of the new signage was in place. As I was doing 38mph, I got 3 points and a 40 fine (it hadn't gone up to 60 back then).

Bad luck on my part, but to be honest the road was probably about due for a stricter speed limit anyway.

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twohundredpercent
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I'd always held the assumption that there were certain types of road that you were supposed to know had certain speed limits (ie, built up areas = 30mph).

(I took my driving test in 1990, failed it, and have never bothered again, so I don't know very much at all about how this sort of thing works)

[ 29.06.2007, 20:57: Message edited by: 200percent ]

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boffin2
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On the more general point about justification of speed cameras, I think their very existence (whether or not on stretches of road with high accident rates) makes drivers more aware of their speed, which, per se, must be a good thing.

On the specific point of the op, in this instance, the only infringement was breach of a speed limit. There was no loss of life or limb and no bent metal. But if there had been, would these two appellants feel equally comfortable with the notion that their right to silence should supersede the imperative of bringing to justice the wreakers of that carnage? IIf not, then they should look to the wider precedent upholding their appeal would set.

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erwin
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Yes ... the idea that no one was hurt at the moment of a specific infraction can't be a defence, can it?

But it's like in football - a bloke goes in studs up and breaks a fellow professional's leg, and it's a foul, a red card, a big suspension and a fine. He misses and nothing happens, or he gets a yellow for 'dangerous play'. There's something wrong there.

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Rogin the Armchair fan
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I could rush into my local pub later on with a golf club, call everyone in there a cunt, swing it wildly at the first four blokes who jump me and miss, and get (along with a decent kicking) possibly a 200 public order offence fine, and maybe a ban from the place (probably to be rescinded after a wholesome apology a month later to the landlady).

If instead of missing them all I hit one of them on my way down and killed them, I'd spend the next fifteen years inside prison.

Such is our system of justice.

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Tubby Isaacs
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Yeah, prisoners can't vote. The Liberal Democrats at the last election had a policy that they should (presumably voted through by their conference) but Kennedy said that this wasn't a priority, so it wasn't really a policy, or something.

The difference between custodial sentences and non-custodial can be a bit arbitrary, so it's not right to deny those in custody the vote while allowing it to those who didn't get bird.

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HORN
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Crikey - speeding. That's the 4th one on the list of Things No One on OTF Would Ever Countenance Doing that I've done.

I'll get my coat.

Posts: 2404 | From: Sgeti | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
HORN
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quote:
I could rush into my local pub later on with a golf club, call everyone in there a cunt, swing it wildly at the first four blokes who jump me and miss, and get (along with a decent kicking) possibly a 200 public order offence fine, and maybe a ban from the place (probably to be rescinded after a wholesome apology a month later to the landlady).

If instead of missing them all I hit one of them on my way down and killed them, I'd spend the next fifteen years inside prison.

Such is our system of justice.

By the same token, rushing into your local golf club calling everyone in there a cunt would have earned you a few plaudits, I reckon.
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boffin2
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Crikey - speeding. That's the 4th one on the list of Things No One on OTF Would Ever Countenance Doing that I've done.

I don't know about "no one else". I have been caught (twice) and once while driving a car that belonged to someone else.

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Paul S
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I been caught speeding as well.

The thing about speed cameras though is that you are actually breaking the law when you get snapped and not classified as being "potentially" dangerous.

Posts: 2400 | From: Plastered over the Maplin Sands | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Oadlad
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Last year I surfed to find a better insurance quote and discovered that three points meant that all the companies familiar on the telly to us refused to consider me. When returning to my current insurer they added a further thirty quid, so that was a form of additional fine.
Ironically, I got the fine when taking grandchildren to a museum about fifty miles away and declaring that we would go the pretty way, avoiding the motorway, so we could take our time.
Last year we visited South Wales for the first time and were surprised at the number of cameras. I realised that if I transgressed three times I could be off the road on my return to Leicester. Made me think and got a bit paranoid.

Posts: 157 | From: Leicester UK | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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