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Camera van and dashcam disagree
stethoscope
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 13:53
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I was surprised to receive an NIP in the post alleging that I had been travelling at 83mph on a 70mph NSL road and photographed by a manual camera van. I had seen the van, and was travelling in the flow of traffic. I have a GPS 'satnav' map device and a GPS-linked dashcam and so downloaded the data from both. The video clearly shows the camera van on the other side of the road, and that my speed is 69.3mph. While the satnav measures in legs of a few hundred yards rather than instantaneously it is in agreement with the dashcam.

This is where it gets interesting. The safety partnership have kindly sent two stills of the car. However, the time printed on the picture is some 30 seconds after I passed the van - and the car is about half a mile away. I asked a police friend of mine what to do, and he suggested writing to the safety partnership to tell them that I had evidence from two devices that agreed with each other but disagreed with theirs. I did so, and got a rapid reply to say that GPS devices were inaccurate and affected by the weather so they were still going to prosecute. I have returned the RK form - I was driving and that is not in dispute, but I do dispute their data. Firstly, the two devices agree with each other on time, place and speed. They have no connection with each other apart from a power supply from the car. Furthermore, while I am well aware that the speed measured can fluctuate, it depends on the number of satellites used for calculation and the variation is not great - ceratinly not 14mph for a sustained peiod. 8 satellites were being used. Even more pertinently, the timekeeping by the GPS system is incredibly accurate. The devices keep good time even when not able to see satellites, but when they can see them it is accurate to milliseconds. I'm pretty confident in the time and speed records I have and have preserved. I am minded to defend this, as something has clearly gone wrong at their end. I have no idea what, and it isn't my role to speculate. Please can I seek advice on this course of action?
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This post has been edited by stethoscope: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 13:53
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post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 13:53
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Jlc
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:16
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For starters, the time of day discrepancy is not of any concern (unless was wildly out). The clock in mobile speed measurement devices will be merely directory rather than an absolute - as opposed to devices such as SPECS where it is key. The time being 'out' has no bearing on the speed measurement here. Indeed, the clock on your device is likely to be the correct one if GPS synchronised.

It also follows that you can't rely on the times to correlate the data precisely.

It is true that consumer GPS devices are not that accurate - but can be indicative of the average speed in normal circumstances. The problem is the type approved laser based speed measurement used on you is far more accurate (if operated correctly) and deemed to be so unless you can demonstrate otherwise. The GPS calculation will involve an element of smoothing/averaging.

Because you can't correlate 100% it's possible that your speed was measured at a different point, perhaps before slowing down. (I'm not suggesting you were speeding previously) Remember, the laser measurement is taken in around 1/3 second.

Having said that, if the footage/data you have shows that their device is incorrect (especially for a reasonable distance prior to the location) this may be sufficient to cast reasonable doubt. It would be best if an expert witness could analyse your information to provide their findings. Similar cases have been dropped pre-trial - if one was being cynical to avoid a potentially embarrassing result and an admission of 'error'.

QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 13:53) *
The safety partnership have kindly sent two stills of the car. However, the time printed on the picture is some 30 seconds after I passed the van

Similarly, the stills they have extracted from their video may have the speed measured at a previous point. (i.e. is not the 'money shot')

This post has been edited by Jlc: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:14


--------------------
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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stethoscope
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:16
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Thank you Jlc - but the allegation on the NIP was that the vehicle was travelling at that speed at that time on that day. My evidence is that of those three, only the day is correct. I can't see how they can then say that the time doesn't matter. It's as important as the speed, surely?
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notmeatloaf
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:24
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Are you sure that at no point in the time you were approaching you were over the speed limit? The still from the camera van should tell you what distance away they measured your speed, it will very likely be further away than the still you posted. They can measure up to 1km away especially from a vantage point.

The time difference is immaterial, yours will almost certainly be more accurate as it's set by GPS but there is no debate about whether it is the same car as it could be if it was hours apart.

If you are sure that the GPS does not show you exceeding the speed limit by a margin then of course the correct thing to do is fight it. However, be aware this
may not be an easy process. The laser gun is an approved device and is assumed to be accurate unless it is shown otherwise. Your device of course isn't approved but is a well known brand using reliable technology and should be able to cast reasonable doubt on the police's evidence - in which case you will be found not guilty.

There are three possible options in order of preference.

1. The CPS see the evidence and drop it before trial.
2. The CPS see the evidence and accept it but it still goes to trial.
3. The CPS sees the evidence and objects to it, in which case you will likely need to employ an expert to present the evidence to court. Obviously this is expensive up front although you should recover the costs subsequently.

Obviously whether you are prepared to proceed through each change depends on your time, finances and whether you appoint legal representation. It may be pertinent now to email the Chief Constable and ask them to review the case now because although potentially less satisfying it will be less hassle.

After you have received the response back from the CC make sure you contact the local press because you are "concerned others may have been caught with this inaccurate device". Bit of pot stirring never goes amiss.
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Jlc
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:25
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Please don't go down that rabbit hole.

The allegation is that you were exceeding the limit. The location is not vague to you and as I noted above the time is not purporting to be an specific moment to prove the allegation, i.e. showing your correlated speed at the 'exact' moment they allege.

If you were speeding at that point (around 83mph say) within 1 minute or so then I would be taking the fixed penalty/course.

If you were cruising at no more than 70mph at time and reasonably prior then I'd fight.


--------------------
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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mdann52
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:25
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QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:16) *
Thank you Jlc - but the allegation on the NIP was that the vehicle was travelling at that speed at that time on that day. My evidence is that of those three, only the day is correct. I can't see how they can then say that the time doesn't matter. It's as important as the speed, surely?


You aren't disadvantaged by the error (you still know you were driving at the time), so unfortunately it has no bearing on this - especially, as it is seconds out rather than minutes or hours. If raised as a defence in court, you'll not get far with it!

Let's put it another way - if the time of a CCTV camera is out by 10 minutes (let's say), would a shoplifter be able to claim they were not guilty of the offence at said place if there was a clear image of them being there? In this case, they have an image of your vehicle allegedly doing a certain speed. You don't deny you were not in the area at that rough time, so I wouldn't rely on this unfortunately.
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stethoscope
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:36
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Let's put it another way - if the time of a CCTV camera is out by 10 minutes (let's say), would a shoplifter be able to claim they were not guilty of the offence at said place if there was a clear image of them being there? In this case, they have an image of your vehicle allegedly doing a certain speed. You don't deny you were not in the area at that rough time, so I wouldn't rely on this unfortunately

If the alleged shoplifter has reliable evidence that he was elsewhere at the time I think that's called an alibi!

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The Rookie
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:46
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Still not understanding it then...... the evidence would show a theft, an alibi for ten minutes later isn’t an alibi.

Stop grasping at straws!


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peterguk
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:53
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QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 13:53) *
I asked a police friend of mine what to do


Never take legal advice from a cop.


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StationCat
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 14:56
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Since the range of the speed gun in the camera van is up to 1km, the key question is: was there a point earlier in your dash-cam footage when you were driving at the speed they alledge?


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mazzer
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:19
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How about posting the stills of your car here so we can see what they look like?
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stethoscope
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26
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Station cat - investigating now.
Mazzer - They are clearly identified as copyright of the relevant police force so I hesitate to do so.

This post has been edited by stethoscope: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26
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Jlc
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:32
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QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26) *
Station cat - investigating now.

This is the point I made earlier. You can't pull out the data from the 'exact' moment specified and say 'not guilty'. There's a much bigger picture.

Given the costs involved in prosecution will be yours to pay should you lose (guideline starting at £620) you'd need to be sure you can fully defend the allegation comprehensively.

QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26) *
Mazzer - They are clearly identified as copyright of the relevant police force so I hesitate to do so.

A picture of your own car? wink.gif


--------------------
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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Pete D
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:56
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Was the front or rear of the van facing you. I suspect the van was facing you so you would have been pinged from the rear. What range is displayed on the still and is there a - in front of the speed. Pete D
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mazzer
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:05
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QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26) *
Mazzer - They are clearly identified as copyright of the relevant police force so I hesitate to do so.


Copyright applies to photographs as "original artistic works" that are the product of independent creative effort. I can assure you that does not apply in this case.

You can choose not to post them here of course, but it may help your case if we see them. You can obscure any personal information but leave the data regarding speed, distance etc.

Look through other threads on this site and you'll see plenty of examples of these photos being published without attracting threats from the camera partnerships or Police to take them down.

This post has been edited by mazzer: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:07
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Jlc
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:08
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I doubt the pictures will make much difference other than to show a clean ping of 83mph. This doesn’t appear to be the thrust of the OP’s defence.


--------------------
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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mickR
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:09
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QUOTE (Jlc @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:32) *
QUOTE (stethoscope @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 15:26) *
Mazzer - They are clearly identified as copyright of the relevant police force so I hesitate to do so.

A picture of your own car? wink.gif


My thoughts entirely. A pic of you in a public place? As one is entitled to any cctv footage of themselves I fail to see how plod can copyright such a pic.

This post has been edited by mickR: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:09
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mazzer
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:16
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QUOTE (Jlc @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:08) *
I doubt the pictures will make much difference other than to show a clean ping of 83mph. This doesn’t appear to be the thrust of the OP’s defence.


They could give us a distance/angle/direction clue when compared to the dashcam image.
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mickR
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:26
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QUOTE (mazzer @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:16) *
QUOTE (Jlc @ Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:08) *
I doubt the pictures will make much difference other than to show a clean ping of 83mph. This doesn’t appear to be the thrust of the OP’s defence.


They could give us a distance/angle/direction clue when compared to the dashcam image.


I agree the more info the better as it's a little vague at mo. Exactly where it was pinged and the relative dash cam footage at that time is important. Visability looks a bit dull in pic was it raining? Was scamvan scamming through closed window? All relative.

This post has been edited by mickR: Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:27
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mazzer
post Thu, 1 Mar 2018 - 16:28
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Or post the entire dashcam video.
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