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[NIP Wizard] I blame the council.
soulman3333
post Sat, 24 Aug 2019 - 22:27
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NIP Details and Circumstances
What is the name of the Constabulary? -
Date of the offence: - July 2019
Date of the NIP: - 5 days after the offence
Date you received the NIP: - 7 days after the offence
Location of offence (exact location as it appears on the NIP: important): - stretton road much wenlock shropshire
Was the NIP addressed to you? - Yes
Was the NIP sent by first class post, second class or recorded delivery? - First
If your are not the Registered Keeper, what is your relationship to the vehicle? -
How many current points do you have? - 0
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 - The road drops from a NSL to 30MPH well before any street lighting. There are 30MPH posts but the nearside is totally hidden by overgrown hedge and the offside is 95% covered so that you can only see it when crossing it. There are "tigers teeth" lines on the road and a 30MPH but only at the point where the 30MPH signs are. I was doing 38MPH but the police motorcyclist could have zapped me at the point of crossing the line as it were.

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: Sat, 24 Aug 2019 22:27:39 +0000
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post Sat, 24 Aug 2019 - 22:27
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The Rookie
post Sat, 24 Aug 2019 - 23:36
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A photo taken from the drivers eye point would help to see how much of a chance you would have.

Are you saying you’re speed was definitely recorded before you got to the first street lamp?


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Logician
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 00:14
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You will need to check whether there is a Traffic Regulation Order specifying a longer distance than that covered the lamps, and of course if you were zapped between the sign and the first lamp. There certainly are convenient places there for police use.

Going for a defence based on obscured signs might be a bit of a gamble, being a matter of opinion. Provided you have not done a course for an offence in the last three years you are sure to be offered a course, and that might be worth considering.


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soulman3333
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 12:07
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I have got photographs taken on the road which show that signs are no visible and i will try and upload them on to here. The start of the street lamps is where the copper was stood so definitely got zapped before the lamps.

To be honest I have already sent of the first reply and as it seems to be the cheapest option, have told them I would do the course but haven't booked it yet.

I was considering try to sue the council through the small claims court, after the course, for the course fee back, based on their negligence of keeping the signs visible, which in my opinion is a gross failure of duty considering how much emphasis they put on keeping to speed limits/ how dangerous speeding is/ and the fact that I am told they have regular speed checks at this point, so speeding is obviously a problem in their minds here.

I have since read that the police should check when setting up a speed trap, that all signs should be checked for visibility and this has obviously not been done for many months looking at the state of the hedges.

I am angry about this because they are obviously catching loads of drivers who are not familiar with this area (it is a widely used holiday route to church stretton) on the basis of a failure of both the council and police in doing their duty as instructed by law.
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The Rookie
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 13:07
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Doing the course and suing is unlikely to give much relief.

A letter to the police pointing out the poor state of the signage may see them drop it, it would have been better if that letter went back with the first reply but it’s not too late now.

Read the FAQ on how to post photos.

This post has been edited by The Rookie: Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 13:07


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TryOut
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 14:23
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Seems there is enough info to sign the 30mph limit. There is a police enforcement camera sign too.

You can even see the first streetlamp from here.



I don't think inadequate signing is going to fly.
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Logician
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 16:04
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The OP is not disputing the signage as such, but says it was obscured "There are 30MPH posts but the nearside is totally hidden by overgrown hedge and the offside is 95% covered so that you can only see it when crossing it." The Streetview is 8 years old, so gives no indication of the current situation, which is why The Rookie suggested a current image would assist. The leading case on this is Coombes


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andy_foster
post Sun, 25 Aug 2019 - 20:09
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As this thread has been substantially pruned, it seems prudent to re-iterate the 2 obvious potential 'defences'.

Speed limits are created in 1 of 2 ways - default limits for the class of road, depending on whether or not they are motorways, have street lighting and how many carriageways, and limits created by Traffic Regulation Orders. Signs are merely there to indicate the limit, and are not always in the correct place. Signs do not create the limit (except when specified in the TRO, such as rolling roadworks).

By default, a non-motorway single carriageway road without street lighting is subject to a 60mph limit for cars, etc. Without any TROs, the limit would change in line with the first street light. To extend the 30mph limit beyond this would require a TRO. If there is no TRO then the OP was in a 60mph limit until he reached the first street light. This is why the OP needs to contact the Highways Department of the relevant council to check whether or not there is a TRO, and if there is, what it says.

If there is a valid TRO in force for the location where the OP's was 'caught', then the remaining obvious defence is under s. 85(4) RTRA 1984, as explained in Coombes as linked to by Logician.



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"Whatever the intention of Parliament was, or was not, the law is quite clear." - The Rookie
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soulman3333
post Mon, 26 Aug 2019 - 09:23
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hi, here are 3 photos of the approach...hopefully.
Attached thumbnail(s)
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bill w
post Mon, 26 Aug 2019 - 09:37
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Just another question to be considered. Were there other vehicles ahead of you, such that you wouldn't have been able to see the road markings until the one immediately in front of you had cleared the start of them?
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soulman3333
post Sat, 31 Aug 2019 - 11:56
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Possibly, also this photo was taken standing up, in a car, the drivers eye level is about 2-3 feet lower so the road markings aren't that visible until you are nearly on them, either way to start decelerating from 60MPH to 30MPH at the point of noticing would take some serious/ dangerous braking and the fact that I had decelerated to 38 MPH shows that I was attempting to conform to the change of speed limit once I had finally seen the signs.

As i said, it isn't worth fighting it in the magistrates court and have signed up for a course now but feel that a small claims court summons against the council for loss of money due to their incompetence has got to be worth a try even if it only gets a mention in the local paper to warn other drivers of this speed "trap" and makes the council do something about it. My only concern is if I lose the small claims case would I be liable for councils defence costs. I know at one time this wouldn't have been the case and I have sucesfully used to small claims court for unpaid debts when I was self employed but I believe the small claims "charade" has changed dramatically in the last few years since I last used it.

Any ideas anyone?
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Logician
post Sat, 31 Aug 2019 - 21:02
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Although these people mention only personal injury claims they may be willing to offer some advice, but the amount involved may not give them a good enough return. At any rate, they highlight the relevant legislation.

I do not give you much of a chance, to be honest.



This post has been edited by Logician: Sat, 31 Aug 2019 - 21:15


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southpaw82
post Sat, 31 Aug 2019 - 21:51
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You might want to google “pure economic loss in tort” first.


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The Rookie
post Sun, 1 Sep 2019 - 08:38
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So doing that is easier than writing to the police to ask them to check the signs?


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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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soulman3333
post Sun, 1 Sep 2019 - 09:37
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Thanks all.

To Rookie, yes I will be writing to the police about the signs and their lack of checking before setting up the speed check, as they should be doing but i feel that the council are the main culprits in all this. They set the speed limits, set the points where the limits start and are responsible for maintaining a clear view of these signs. They are the ones that bang on about speeding, residents opinions and concerns about speeding,danger on the roads etc and i find it annoying and hypocritical when they fail in their duty about something that supposedly means a lot to them and at the same time causes lots of motorists financial losses and points on their licenses due to their incompetence. I wonder how many motorists like myself have been caught while the hedge was in this state who would not have been caught if the signs were visible.

This post has been edited by soulman3333: Sun, 1 Sep 2019 - 09:38
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The Rookie
post Sun, 1 Sep 2019 - 15:24
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If no-one has reported the signs as being obscured you expect them to check every one?

Have you reported it to the council yet?

The Police normally should check signage before setting up the camera, they aren’t infallible but this seems extreme, a constructive letter written promptly was always your best bet. It was suggested you write to the Police a week ago after all.


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

S172's
Rookies 1-0 Kent

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

PPC PCN's
Rookies 10-0 PPC's
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soulman3333
post Wed, 4 Sep 2019 - 19:38
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To be honest no-one expects every road sign to be inspected and kept clear BUT one which is indicating a change of speed limit in a place where they feel it is necessary to set up speed traps then YES ,they should inspect on a fairly regular basis.

To be fair I live in a rural area and travel many rural roads and apart from this one, I cannot recall another village/town 30MPH sign that is obscured on entering the village/town.

However someone must read these comments because , thanks to a tip off from someone who travels that road, I have been informed that someone has added a "safety partnership" cardboard, speed camera warning sign to the signs upright and attempted a bodge job of cutting back some of the hedge immediately before the sign on the offside. It's a typical council bodge which looks like it was done in ten minutes with a pair of hand shears and still doesn't make the sign any more visible from 50 yards but only when you are right on top of it.

So it seems that the admission of error is starting to occur to them. ( I have been today and taken fresh photos of their latest attempt .)

This post has been edited by soulman3333: Wed, 4 Sep 2019 - 19:39
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The Rookie
post Wed, 4 Sep 2019 - 19:44
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Typical inspection period is six monthly, the sign was probably fine 6 months ago. If they have to drive to terminal signs then they would end up checking them all anyway, and they simply can’t afford it.

I’m reposting signage blocked by foliage often.


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

S172's
Rookies 1-0 Kent

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

PPC PCN's
Rookies 10-0 PPC's
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speedfighter23
post Wed, 4 Sep 2019 - 21:40
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QUOTE (soulman3333 @ Mon, 26 Aug 2019 - 10:23) *
hi, here are 3 photos of the approach...hopefully.


Wow that looks bad. Send that to the police and call them to see what they say. Hurry up though, if they reply with an offer it may be too late for them to back down, unless you want to take it to court which would be riskier.
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southpaw82
post Thu, 5 Sep 2019 - 09:55
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QUOTE (TryOut @ Thu, 5 Sep 2019 - 09:32) *
the court might regard the 30mph roundel on the road and the close view to the sign at the RHS as adequate guidance.

Do you have an authority that says that the court can take into account the sign painted on the road when assessing adequate guidance?


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