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A90 - Unmarked Car clocked me at 93, something not right
foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:01
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Travelling back from a trackday at knockhill in my porsche with absolutely no intentions of "blasting" back home, if nothing else I was knackered.

I was in convoy, two of my friends were in front, my dad was behind, there was other traffic on the A90, we were travelling with the flow of other traffic. I had overtaken a car that was travelling slightly slower but I do not recall speeding up to overtake it.


Next thing the blues come on so I pulled over thinking he was on a shout somewhere but instead he tucked in behind me and I stopped. One of the officers then came over to me and showed me some kind of handheld speed detection device showing 93 mph. I do not see that I could have been travelling at that speed.

I informed the officer that I didn't think I could possibly have been doing that speed, I asked how long they thought I had been travelling at that speed and they refused to answer, saying "thats not the point", maybe so but thats not an answer to the question I asked.

They did not want me near their car either which I thought was a bit odd, I was told to sit and wait in my car which I did but as I was sat there and the more I thought about it, the more I thought I couldn't have done that kind of speed, so I walked over to their car to discuss it with them and find out anything I could about the calibration of their equipment, one of the officers showed me the sticker on the back of the device that did indeed say calibration was valid until sometime next year but after that they did not want me near them and told me to go back to my car and they would talk to me about it later.

When they came back over to give me the little pink ticket I asked them if the device would be tested if I disputed the speed and they said no, they would just present the calibration certificate.

I really do not think that speed reading is correct, if it was then everyone (barring the car I overtook that was driving slightly slower) was doing the same speed or close it it, and they certainly were not.

I'm not sure what to do, how you fight against two police officers when I have absolutely no evidence to defend myself? I have called the control center and asked to speak to the officer that issued the ticket, I would like to know if they have any video footage as surely that will show me in the flow of the rest of the traffic.

Any advice?


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post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:01
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StuartBu
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:05
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What about the other cars accompanying you ...did they overtake this cop car as well...what speed did they say they were doing ..( either before or during the overtake ) ? if you have asked them that is .
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Pete D
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:11
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Confusion here. Are you telling us the car you overtook was the unmarked police car. I suspect not as to use a hand held device the officer would have to be stationary, up a slip road or on a bridge, ping you then gave chase. Please clarify. Pete D
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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:18
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The car I overtook wasn't the unmarked car, my two friends would have overtaken that car as well, in all fairness we would have been kicking on for almost 80, but who doesn't. I appreciate that that is still technically a speeding offence but it is not 93 mph.

Apparently there is no video evidence. The device used was a unipar SL700

Edit: Also, after getting stopped, I noticed no "unmarked police cars operating" signs, there were plenty on the way down but none on the way up, I guess that is irrelevant though?

I just cannot believe it, the A90 is absolutely plastered with Gatso cameras anyway so why the hell would I be driving down it at 93. Not happy sad.gif

How likely is it that they got a false reading? I appreciate that the equipment was in calibration but surely that depends on how it is handled, ie if the device was dropped at some point, would it cause the calibration to be out?



This post has been edited by foobar: Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:27
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Pete D
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:22
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What is the offence detailed on the pink ticket. Pete D
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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:29
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QUOTE (Pete D @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:22) *
What is the offence detailed on the pink ticket. Pete D


The ticket says "Drive at 93mph in 70mph limit" offence code 304003
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southpaw82
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 15:47
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Do you admit to speeding? If so, if you get an FPN you may as well comply.


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Transit man
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:00
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:18) *
in all fairness we would have been kicking on for almost 80, but who doesn't. I appreciate that that is still technically a speeding offence but it is not 93 mph.

The difference in the fine & points will be the same, so if you were doing 80, then you may as well accept it.
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:18) *
Also, after getting stopped, I noticed no "unmarked police cars operating" signs, there were plenty on the way down but none on the way up, I guess that is irrelevant though?

Correct, there is never a need for warning signs.
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:18) *
How likely is it that they got a false reading? I appreciate that the equipment was in calibration but surely that depends on how it is handled, ie if the device was dropped at some point, would it cause the calibration to be out?

Possible but IMHO unlikely, along with the fact that you admit to 80.


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sgtdixie
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:04
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As a speed gun was used it provides an instant speed reading. No follow and no video. It is hardly surprising that the said they wouldn't discuss it therefore. As for not allowing you near the car; I think it probably had live ANPR intelligence on the screen so they didn't want you to see it. It may even have been about you, who knows.

As you admit speeding you cannot say you are not guilty. All you could do was to ask for a newton hearing to see if they will accept a lower speed. Almost certainly they won't as a speed gun reading is not open to negotiation like a follow.

I would suggest that if you get a COFP you accept it. They won't be sending you any evidence until you decide to go to court at which point the financial penalties increase.
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RoamingRomeo
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:42
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:01) *
Travelling back from a trackday
...
in my porsche
...
I do not see that I could have been travelling at [93 mph]

This combination will not sit favourably with the magistrates, should it form the backbone of a defence.

For one thing, if you've been already driving very fast in a car capable of high speeds, it is easy to underestimate (relatively) lower speeds you drive at just a little later. There's more, but that's enough.

I'd grab with both hands any CoFP that gets offered and drive away (at moderate speed).

This post has been edited by RoamingRomeo: Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:46
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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 17:18
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QUOTE (Transit man @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 17:00) *
Possible but IMHO unlikely, along with the fact that you admit to 80.


Yes, thats 80mph indicated and it is possible that we touched that in the course of travelling with the flow of traffic but that is most likely not 80mph, maybe 75 which I would assume would call common sense into play with regards to a penalty. Am I wrong in thinking there is supposed to be a 10% allowance? Either way, 80 is not 93.


QUOTE (RoamingRomeo @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 17:42) *
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 16:01) *
Travelling back from a trackday
...
in my porsche
...
I do not see that I could have been travelling at [93 mph]

This combination will not sit favourably with the magistrates, should it form the backbone of a defence.

For one thing, if you've been already driving very fast in a car capable of high speeds, it is easy to underestimate (relatively) lower speeds you drive at just a little later. There's more, but that's enough.

I'd grab with both hands any CoFP that gets offered and drive away (at moderate speed).


Well that's pretty discriminatory, I know what you are saying but just because I drive a powerful car on a track (the proper and safe place to do so, which really should go some way to indicate that I am a responsible driver) I am immediately at a disadvantage?

I'd been at knockhill two days straight, bttered around in single seaters, karts and legend cars before a heavy track session in my own car, I was sore and tired, I had absolutely no desire to speed home, now I find myself in a position where I cannot defend myself as I have no evidence, my dad has a camera in his car but unfortunately it wasn't running at the time, otherwise I might have had some defence, however weak that would be. I feel I was singled out because of the car I was in but it looks like I'll have no choice but to accept the penalty.

I guess some proper legal advice is in order. If I take it to court and lose, can they give me additional points, a heavier fine or both?
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peterguk
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 17:23
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:18) *
I guess some proper legal advice is in order.

If I take it to court and lose, can they give me additional points, a heavier fine or both?


Take what to court? You admit to speeding, so you are guilty of the offence by your own admission, so how can you win?

This post has been edited by peterguk: Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 17:26


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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:09
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QUOTE (peterguk @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:23) *
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:18) *
I guess some proper legal advice is in order.

If I take it to court and lose, can they give me additional points, a heavier fine or both?


Take what to court? You admit to speeding, so you are guilty of the offence by your own admission, so how can you win?


No I have been accused of travelling at 93, was NOT travelling at 93.
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Durzel
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:29
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You've been accused of excess speed, and 93mph is the speed they recorded. If it helps, you would have received the same punishment had they pinged you and got a reading of 80mph, which you've admitted you were probably doing.

Unless you are adament you weren't speeding at all, which you aren't, taking it to court is a bad idea.

For future reference it is not automatically "safe" to be doing 80mph even on the motorway, whether that's "going with the flow" or not.

This post has been edited by Durzel: Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:29
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Logician
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:30
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:09) *
QUOTE (peterguk @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:23) *
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:18) *
I guess some proper legal advice is in order.

If I take it to court and lose, can they give me additional points, a heavier fine or both?


Take what to court? You admit to speeding, so you are guilty of the offence by your own admission, so how can you win?


No I have been accused of travelling at 93, was NOT travelling at 93.


The offence is exceeding the speed limit, which you admit. The amount by which you exceeded the limit does not affect your guilt, it affects the sentence only. It is usual to offer a fixed penalty for speeds below 96 in a 70 limit, and that would apply whether you were doing 80 or 93. If you are offered a fixed penalty the rational thing is therefore to simply accept it, even though you believe the speed you are accused of is faster than your actual speed.


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RoamingRomeo
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:47
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:18) *
QUOTE (Roaming Romeo)
(....)I'd grab with both hands any CoFP that gets offered and drive away (at moderate speed).

Well that's pretty discriminatory, I know what you are saying but just because I drive a powerful car on a track [etc.]

I love fast cars too. smile.gif

And yes, we discriminate every day in what we do. Part of living and decision-making on incomplete information.

What you allege to be "discrimination" will likely be what proves to be the magistrates' take on things, assuming they've given you the benefit of the doubt and believe that your stated belief (that the speed couldn't be that high) is sincere. It could well be their way to reconcile your sincere beliefs with the contradictory but objective, allegedly unbiased, information.

We are poor judges of speed and of many other physical quantities. Simultaneously put one hand in an ice bucket and the other in one of hot water, for ten seconds. Then, without too much delay, immerse both in water at room temperature. Tell us what your sincere beliefs are, based on the signals your brain receives from each extremity. Pardon me for the analogy, but the maggies probably know it. It isn't entirely inapplicable here. After driving very fast (though quite appropriately) it is simply natural to underestimate much slower speeds.

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If I take it to court and lose

On the facts you stated, IMO you can only lose. There's no "if". 80 > 70.

Balancing risks (likely hugely increased £££ etc. against unlikely reward), bluntly this one is close to being a no-brainer (take a CoFP if offered).

Good luck whatever you decide.

QUOTE (Durzel @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:29) *
For future reference it is not automatically "safe" to be doing 80mph even on the motorway, whether that's "going with the flow" or not.

+1 and ACPO guidelines notwithstanding.

OP: A defence of "It was 80 mph and not 93 mph" won't fly with the maggies. You've already been told about the cons of a Newton hearing, which at best for you will result in additional costs (££, time), a conviction and very probably no CoFP.
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RoamingRomeo
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:32
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 18:18) *
I guess some proper legal advice is in order.

I'll take another bite at this, if I may?

While I believe it's forum policy to never discourage people from taking legal advice, and that's only sensible, IMO you will find that some of the posters here on PePiPoo are lawyers and/or are extremely experienced in these matters. Wrong advice gets shot down very fast. Also IMO, on these matters you are likely to obtain better guidance here than from most lawyers, perhaps except expensive motoring specialists, who are few and far between (and IMO over-hyped). On the circumstances you've outlined, and again IMO, you'd be wasting your dosh.

QUOTE
I feel I was singled out because of the car I was in

Almost certainly.

Several decades ago, I drove a bright-red sports coupe with a giant spoiler, tweaked suspension, brakes, chipped, cat-free, did 0-60 in 4.5 seconds (if not less). Looked provocative too. At max "boot", it could go through a tank in not much more than half an hour. Had I taken out the limiter, it should have got to a genuine (unsafe) 180mph.

I gave it up - far, far too much hassle. BiB seemed to be prowling nearby, and following, all the time. Never stopped, no convictions - I ended up driving slower in it than in anything before or since due to the unwanted attention.
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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:35
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QUOTE (Logician @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:30) *
The offence is exceeding the speed limit, which you admit. The amount by which you exceeded the limit does not affect your guilt, it affects the sentence only. It is usual to offer a fixed penalty for speeds below 96 in a 70 limit, and that would apply whether you were doing 80 or 93. If you are offered a fixed penalty the rational thing is therefore to simply accept it, even though you believe the speed you are accused of is faster than your actual speed.


If I was doing 80... as i said it was indicated speed at best. None of this is the point, its principle really. When I inform my insurance company, given that I drive a hugely powerful car, they will most likely be concerned with whether I was 23mph over the speed limit, or 5,6,7 mph over the speed limit... no?
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peterguk
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:41
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QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 20:35) *
When I inform my insurance company, given that I drive a hugely powerful car, they will most likely be concerned with whether I was 23mph over the speed limit, or 5,6,7 mph over the speed limit... no?


They'll only want date, offence code, points and fine. They don't have time for stories.


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foobar
post Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 19:44
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QUOTE (peterguk @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 20:41) *
QUOTE (foobar @ Sun, 21 Jul 2013 - 20:35) *
When I inform my insurance company, given that I drive a hugely powerful car, they will most likely be concerned with whether I was 23mph over the speed limit, or 5,6,7 mph over the speed limit... no?


They'll only want date, offence code, points and fine. They don't have time for stories.


That makes things slightly better I guess but as I said... principle. It very much sounds like I'll not be able to do much about it though but bend over and take it.




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