Home › Forums › Pure Petrolhead › Speed cameras › Speed camera errors threaten drivers
- This topic has 1 reply, 1 voice, and was last updated 18 years, 4 months ago by Gix.
January 13, 2005 at 8:04 pm #9358GixParticipant
THOUSANDS of drivers may be unfairly banned for speeding under the Government’s new graduated penalty points system because of errors in the equipment used to measure speed, according to motoring groups.
And police chiefs have given warning that the courts could be overwhelmed by drivers challenging their penalties.
The Road Safety Bill proposes to introduce three tiers of speeding penalties, with points and fines rising according to the gravity of the offence.
At present, nearly all drivers caught speeding have to pay a fixed fine of £60 and have three penalty points added to their licences.
The Government is consulting on a new system under which drivers caught speeding at 39mph in a 30mph zone would receive only two points and a £40 fine. Those recorded at 40mph to 44mph would get three points and a £60 fine. At 45mph and above, the penalty would be six points and a £100 fine — leaving drivers recorded at an extra 1mph, or 45mph instead of 44mph, getting double the number of penalty points.
For motorists who had already accumulated six points, this would result in an automatic six-month driving ban for reaching the 12-point limit.
The Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) fear that drivers who receive second and third-tier penalties will challenge them on the ground that the speed camera could have been wrongly calibrated.
Under Home Office guidelines, speed cameras are required to have an accuracy rate within 2mph of the actual speed.
Police are concerned that public trust in the graduated penalty system would be undermined unless cameras were proved to be 100 per cent accurate. Ian Bell, of Acpo, said that the current penalty system allowed a generous margin of error. “Under the proposed system the margin will be tighter. You could get double the points for an extra 1mph, he said.
A Department for Transport spokesman said: “This is an issue we are aware of and it will be covered when we consult on the detail of the system.”
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