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[NIP Wizard] Another dodgy Lti 2020 photo?
miserable driver
post Mon, 11 Sep 2017 - 09:42
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NIP Details and Circumstances
What is the name of the Constabulary? -
Date of the offence: - April 2017
Date of the NIP: - 11 days after the offence
Date you received the NIP: - 13 days after the offence
Location of offence (exact location as it appears on the NIP: important): - A30 Launceston Bypass Trebursye onslip enforcement bay, Cornwall, both directions
Was the NIP addressed to you? - Yes
Was the NIP sent by first class post, second class or recorded delivery? - Not known
If your are not the Registered Keeper, what is your relationship to the vehicle? -
How many current points do you have? - 3
Provide a description of events (if you know what happened) telling us as much about the incident as possible - some things that may seem trivial to you may be important, so don't leave anything out. Please do not post personal details for obvious reasons - Driving eastwards on A30 in traffic, uphill and right hand bend noticed Police Van in refuge on LHS but thought at the time speed was not excessive and didn't think twice about passing camera. Later received NIP stating 82mph. Confirmed I was the driver and requested photo evidence which shows at 519.9m out I was pinged at 82mph by Lastec Lti 2020 device. Cross hairs on bonnet just beneath passenger window. Also 2 other cars in photo, one quite a distance in front and second in inside lane immediately to right of my car. From centre of cross hairs to centre of my number plate is twice distance to car behind me - ie cross hairs considerably closer to following car than my front number plate. I have now received SJPN notice and as I was away have only 3 days left to respond G/NG. Having read considerable amount online am considering requesting video evidence before making final decision. Would probably only consider defending myself as prohibitive costs to involve lawyers? What do you think, and I wasting my time and should just plead guilty even though I am pretty sure I wasn't doing close to 82mph?

NIP Wizard Responses
These were the responses used by the Wizard to arrive at its recommendation:
Have you received a NIP? - Yes
Are you the Registered Keeper of the vehicle concerned (is your name and address on the V5/V5C)? - Yes
Did the first NIP arrive within 14 days? - Yes
Although you are the Registered Keeper, were you also the keeper of the vehicle concerned (the person normally responsible for it) at the time of the alleged offence? - Yes
Were you driving? - Yes
Which country did the alleged offence take place in? - England

NIP Wizard Recommendation
Based on these responses the Wizard suggested that this course of action should be considered:
  • The law requires you to provide the information requested in the Section 172 notice within the 28 day period, naming yourself as the driver. If you are considering obtaining formal legal advice, do so before returning the notice.

    You should note that there is nothing to be gained by responding any earlier than you have to at any stage of the process. You are likely to receive a Conditional Offer of a Fixed Penalty (COFP) and further reminder(s). If you want to continue the fight, you should ignore all correspondence from the police until you receive a summons. You need to understand from the outset that while you will receive much help and support from members on the forums, you will need to put time and effort into fighting your case and ultimately be prepared to stand up in court to defend yourself.

Generated by the PePiPoo NIP Wizard v3.3.2: Mon, 11 Sep 2017 09:42:40 +0000
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post Mon, 11 Sep 2017 - 09:42
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andy_foster
post Sun, 17 Sep 2017 - 21:37
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You might want to use the Report button to ask a moderator to move this to the general speeding forum - the BB&G forum is a bit quiet at the moment.

The cross hairs are not visible to the operator and do not necessarily show where the beam was targeted. At 520m, the beam would nominally be a little over 1.5m wide (3 miliradian beam divergence).
It is difficult to give a meaningful opinion on the merits of fighting a possibly dodgy photo without seeing the photo in question. However, challenging the accuracy of the device can be very expensive if you lose - ~£620 basic prosecution costs plus a couple of thousand for the prosecution 'expert' witness.

The offence you are charged with is exceeding the speed limit (which is presumably 70mph). If you can prove that the speed is wrong, but that you were still exceeding the speed limit, you will still be convicted. The alleged speed is merely a purported fact relevant to the sentence. If you can show that there is a real likelihood that the speed measured was of a different vehicle, then you would probably have a defence.


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miserable driver
post Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 11:58
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Thanks, I will ask to move to general speeding forum.

In the meantime I have now received a summons to court. In my not guilty plea I asked for a full copy of the video evidence plus a section 9 witness statement as the section 20 submitted, I am advised only covers the interpretation of the video back at base and not on site, and as such can be considered hearsay.

So far I have not received any response to my request for further evidence and intend to ask the court when/if I will be receiving anything otherwise I will not be in a position to mount a defence in court.

I understand that without seeing the photo it would be difficult for you to comment but surely the beam from any optical device must hit a reflective surface that would allow the beam to be returned directly to the sender to establish an accurate time and hence speed?

I have to assume that the video crosshairs are aligned with the laser device otherwise what evidence is there that any speeding of my vehicle took place? The crosshairs are centred on an almost horizontal part of the edge of my bonnet and very close to a vehicle that was behind me but which I overlap in the photo because of the bend.

It was not my intention to challenge the accuracy of the device itself realising this would be very costly but of the operation and interpretation of the video evidence.

Your point about disproving the alleged speed but still being found guilty of exceeding the speed limit puzzles me? Unless I admit in court to exceeding the speed limit how can I possibly be then found guilty?
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AntonyMMM
post Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 15:01
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 12:58) *
..... surely the beam from any optical device must hit a reflective surface that would allow the beam to be returned directly to the sender to establish an accurate time and hence speed?


And the evidence you intend to submit to the court to support that technical statement is ?

The photo is not the evidence. The evidence the court will consider is the statement of the operator that they believed you to be speeding and measured your speed using an approved device. The operator's evidence will be that the device was used correctly and if you want to challenge that you will need evidence based on research, almost certainly with the help of a suitably qualified expert witness, not your own assumptions.

Sorry - but this could be a very expensive day in court.
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Jlc
post Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 15:04
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Even seeing a picture probably won't assist here. The video evidence could be critical.

Do you have a statement from the camera operator? About whether the session checks were performed?

There are reasons why the cross hairs may not be 'fully aligned'.

This post has been edited by Jlc: Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 15:09


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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kernow2015
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 05:48
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The road is NSL dual carriageway where the van parks, I've seen it a few times on the way out of Cornwall.

Aren't the pictures something like a second or 2 behind what the video would show, and the pics are just to indicate which vehicle and the speed/time recorded?
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Jlc
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 07:29
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QUOTE (kernow2015 @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 06:48) *
Aren't the pictures something like a second or 2 behind what the video would show, and the pics are just to indicate which vehicle and the speed/time recorded?

Could be. It may not be the 'money shot'.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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The Rookie
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 07:47
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QUOTE (kernow2015 @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 06:48) *
Aren't the pictures something like a second or 2 behind what the video would show, and the pics are just to indicate which vehicle and the speed/time recorded?

The pictures are a screen grab FROM the video, so erm no, whatever you meant (and its not clear how a snapshot can be behind a continuous video which starts before and ends after it), no.


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peterguk
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 07:59
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Wed, 4 Oct 2017 - 12:58) *
It was ... my intention to challenge operation and interpretation of the video evidence.


How do you intend to interpret the video evidence differently to that of what it shows?

How are you going to convince the court they should ignore what they see in the video but believe what you see in it?

What qualifications do you have to give your beliefs any credibility?

This post has been edited by peterguk: Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 08:00


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The Rookie
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 10:45
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Challenging it in court will cost you dear if you lose....
Right now costs will be circa £85 and you'll get a 1/3 discount off the fine for a guilty plea

Court will see prosecution costs of £620 at least, plus potentially upto £3000 for an expert opinion plus an increased fine but still 3 points (for a 70 limit, more for a 60).

The evidence of your speed comes from the operator, his opinion and the measurement from the device, the video merely acts as an electronic record for the operator, while it is evidence, it isn't THE evidence and no interpretation is required.

You are right that the beam has to hit a reflective surface, have you never seen sunlight reflect off your cars paintwork? After all Cornwall has more sunny days than most of the rest of the UK.

Using the vans location you could work out where the 520m away is (Googel satelite view) and from the photo or video if it fits to your car, if the video shows you passing a the car in the next lane and you argue it was his speed then, erm, you were going faster - allegation proven. AF's point that even if you prove you weren't doing 82, if you prove you were doing over the limit then you are still guilty.

How did it get to court? is the limit there 50(or less)?



--------------------
There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

S172's
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BaggieBoy
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 12:38
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Would appear to be a 70MPH limit at that (known mobile) location.
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miserable driver
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 15:35
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Thank you guys for the useful and some not so useful replies!

As I said previously I am well aware of how difficult and expensive it may turn out to be in court. That said I do not believe I was speeding which makes me want at the very least to explore if there are any relevant issues here that may form the basis of a challenge.

I am also well aware that the first point of evidence is that of the Officer operating the camera. The photo being a still from the video of the alleged offence being committed. I have received a Section 20 witness statement which I have been advised is not from the Officer operating the equipment and suggests that the speed has been obtained from computer records.

Hence my request for a Section 9 witness statement from the Officer who activated the advice and made the opinion that I was exceeding the speed limit prior to activation. The Section 20 statement, as such, is effectively only heresay and would be rejected in any defence.

My point regarding reflection was simple physics, you clearly can't point a light at an inclined mirror and get a direct reflection back to the initial location of the light. I realise that the equipment is more sophisticated that this but nevertheless the same principle must apply particularly when the crosshairs on the video are aligned from the photo on an almost horizontal surface which I find difficult to believe would give a good return to the aiming device. Otherwise why would the ACPO guidelines specifically state that the device must be pointed at a vertical or near vertical surface such as a licence plate or headlamp.

Until now I hadn't actually looked at the main photo much beyond the position of the crosshairs. I have now looked at google maps and printed out the location including the position of the police vehicle. To my surprise at 520m out which is where the alleged offence took place the centreline of the photo would have to pass over the central reserve, all of the opposing carriageway and also over the opposing bank before recrossing over all of this to see my car in the fast lane at the position I was said to have exceeded the speed limit. I understand that this is somewhat difficult to imagine without seeing the photo but what I am basically saying is that the curvature of the road could not allowed this photo to have been taken at 520m. I should have said that the photo crosshairs do not leave the carriageway on which I was travelling and so this must have been at a much closer distance to the van or perhaps the car travelling behind me has been picked up?

As a professional engineer with considerable land survey experience I am more than capable of plotting this accurately and so I am now left with the possibility that distance shown on the photo and on which the speed calculation is made and alleged offence logged is somehow erroneous?

On other issues raised - no I don't yet have any confirmation that the correct checks were made or a statement from the camera operator. If the car behind me had indeed been picked up instead of mine I fail to see why that 'proves' I was driving faster than him as he could have speeded up after I passed him.

Well I'm sure that's more food for you guys to chew over, meantime I need to inform the Court that I have yet to receive the requested evidence and that without it I will be unable to mount an effective defence thereby wasting the magistrate courts time and asking for an adjournment until the evidence is produced. Any experience on this last point would be most welcome too, thanks.
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Jlc
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 16:09
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Note Andy's comment about the beam divergence - but that rubs both ways as there was clearly sufficient return signal for a reading. However, which car it was could be a factor.


--------------------
RK=Registered Keeper, OP=Original Poster (You!), CoFP=Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty, NtK=Notice to Keeper, NtD=Notice to Driver
PoFA=Protection of Freedoms Act, SAC=Safety Awareness Course, NIP=Notice of Intended Prosecution, ADR=Alternative Dispute Resolution
PPC=Private Parking Company, LBCCC=Letter Before County Court Claim, PII=Personally Identifiable Information

Private Parking - remember, they just want your money and will say almost anything to get it.
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southpaw82
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 16:37
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 16:35) *
I have received a Section 20 witness statement which I have been advised is not from the Officer operating the equipment and suggests that the speed has been obtained from computer records.

Hence my request for a Section 9 witness statement from the Officer who activated the advice and made the opinion that I was exceeding the speed limit prior to activation. The Section 20 statement, as such, is effectively only heresay and would be rejected in any defence.


That's not correct. A section 20 certificate is admissible by statute - oddly enough s 20 of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988. The requirements are there, I'd suggest going and reading it. IT will, in short, be saying "this was the speed obtained by an approved device".

QUOTE
Otherwise why would the ACPO guidelines specifically state that the device must be pointed at a vertical or near vertical surface such as a licence plate or headlamp.


Nevertheless, you would have to adduce evidence calling the reading into doubt.

You are unable to give expert evidence and can only give evidence of fact. Remember that if you go into the witness box you're open to cross examination so think carefully about whether there are any questions yo might be asked that you don't want the court to hear the answer to.

How have you requested evidence from the prosecution? You're not entitled to go on a fishing expedition and ask for anything you like. What you ask for should assist your defence or undermine the prosecution. In the first instance, the prosecution get to decide whether to hand it over to you. If they don't you're stuck with making an application to the court for an order to hand over the evidence, if the court is satisfied that you're entitled to it.


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Any comments made do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon. No lawyer/client relationship should be assumed nor should any duty of care be owed.
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miserable driver
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 17:16
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The Section 20 advice was given to me by a solicitor who advises on these sorts of cases.

I agree with you what it says but it is not actual evidence from the Officer who had to make the assessment that I was speeding before activating the equipment and also setting it up. As such it can be dismissed as heresay evidence and a section 9 witness statement from the actual Officer who operated the equipment requested in its place. Maybe its a technicality in any case but the S 9 witness statement more relevant.

I can only conclude that they do it this way as they prefer not to make the civilian operators of the speed cameras have to give evidence in court.

I have now spoken to the court who it seems have yet to pass on my request for further evidence - full video, s 9 witness statement plus set up information confirmation. It has now been passed to the CPS who may or may not seek further evidence from the Speed Camera unit. We'll wait and see if/when it arrives otherwise I will have to advise the court that I am unable to present a proper defence without it?

Thanks for your comments though, very helpful.



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peterguk
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 17:19
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 18:16) *
full video


Very unlikely you'll get the full video.


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Kickaha
post Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 19:57
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 18:16) *
................who had to make the assessment that I was speeding before activating the equipment ............

He needs to form an opinion, but it does not need to be before activating the equipment.
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The Rookie
post Fri, 6 Oct 2017 - 03:32
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Thu, 5 Oct 2017 - 16:35) *
My point regarding reflection was simple physics, you clearly can't point a light at an inclined mirror and get a direct reflection back to the initial location of the light.

Yes you can as its not a perfect mirror.....so I'm afraid you don't understand simple physics, that's ignoring any possible slight misalignment of 'nominal' beam and video and also the beam divergence which at that range means most the front of your car is inside the base of the cone made by the beam.

How certain are you that you weren't speeding before you even got close enough to realise what the van was and confirm your speed?


--------------------
There is no such thing as a law abiding motorist, just those who have been scammed and those yet to be scammed!

S172's
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Council PCN's
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Rookies 1-0 Birmingham

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miserable driver
post Sun, 8 Oct 2017 - 11:12
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Thanks once again for replies.

The issue of whether or not the beam/video are aligned, diameter of cone and whether there is sufficient near vertical surface on either my or the following car to get a clear return signal to the laser may or may not be so relevant to any defence I may choose to make.

What I am presently more interested in is the distance measurement on the photograph which as I alluded to earlier and have since checked several times cannot physically be correct - simply put at that distance there is no clear line of sight to my vehicle without crossing the other carriageways because of the bend and which the photo does not show at all, the crosshairs remaining clearly directly over my carriageway throughout. I appreciate that you have not seen the photograph and am not asking for comment on this aspect specifically but if this is indeed right then my question is what effect would this have on the alleged speed quoted?

At the very least, if successfully proven, it must surely suggest doubt over the recorded speed. How or why this happened I have no idea and wonder whether any of you 'wise owls' may have come across a similar situation? Presumably we are looking at instrument or set up error which would be nigh on impossible and expensive to challenge in court, or the beam is reflecting off something else further away - another vehicle or some road furniture for example?


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Steve_999
post Sun, 8 Oct 2017 - 12:55
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QUOTE (miserable driver @ Sun, 8 Oct 2017 - 12:12) *
Thanks once again for replies.

The issue of whether or not the beam/video are aligned, diameter of cone and whether there is sufficient near vertical surface on either my or the following car to get a clear return signal to the laser may or may not be so relevant to any defence I may choose to make.

What I am presently more interested in is the distance measurement on the photograph which as I alluded to earlier and have since checked several times cannot physically be correct - simply put at that distance there is no clear line of sight to my vehicle without crossing the other carriageways because of the bend and which the photo does not show at all, the crosshairs remaining clearly directly over my carriageway throughout. I appreciate that you have not seen the photograph and am not asking for comment on this aspect specifically but if this is indeed right then my question is what effect would this have on the alleged speed quoted?

At the very least, if successfully proven, it must surely suggest doubt over the recorded speed. How or why this happened I have no idea and wonder whether any of you 'wise owls' may have come across a similar situation? Presumably we are looking at instrument or set up error which would be nigh on impossible and expensive to challenge in court, or the beam is reflecting off something else further away - another vehicle or some road furniture for example?



Sounds very like a still frame from a highly zoomed-in video to me. I would suggest posting the image(s) to get other opinions, as it sounds like you may be heading for a fall to me.
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