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kaytliz
Hi all,
This is my first time posting as I seem unable to find the answers I need.

1. The name of the Constabulary: Avon and Somerset
2. Date of the offence: 07/10/2006 01:34am
3. Date of the NIP: 14/10/2005
4. Date you received the NIP: 16/10/2005
5. Location of offence (exact location as it appears on the NIP: important): M4 Eastbound Junction 19-18
6. Was the NIP addressed to you?: Yes
7. Was the NIP sent by first class post, second class or recorded delivery?: Unsure
8. Are you the Registered Keeper of the vehicle concerned (is your name and address on the V5/V5C)? If not then what is your relationship with the vehicle?: Yes
9. How many current points do you have? : none, but had previous drink driving which has timed out
10. 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.:

On 07/10/2005 at 01:34 a Gatso camera flashed me on the M4 heading towards London doing 66mph when there was a Temporary 40mph speed limit. The NIP was issued on 14/10/2005 and I received it by 16/10/2005. I sent the NIP back stating I was the driver which was dated 17/10/2005.

I have now just received a summons for court where the date of information/complaint is 06/04/2006 and printed on 10/04/2006.

The picture provided with the summons confirms my memory of the night, where the roads appeared to be clear of any roadworks as all cones were on the side of the road which was why I didn't realise there was a speed restriction. At that time of night with minimal road lighting I was just concentrating on the road, I saw the speed camera and thought I was doing under the speed limit. It was only when I got flashed I realised something was wrong, and yet I had to travel a further 3-4 mile to find out what the speed limit should be.
Although the picture does show a speed limit of 40mph sign right in the middle of the speed trap which to be honest isn't much use there.

Can anyone let me know what I can expect to happen and what I should do. As yet I have not completed the for to declare my plea and whether I will attend or not.

Many thanks for any help you may be able to give.
firefly
Hi there,
Two options (as I see it):

1) Plead guilty and take the hit. You'll get the standard 33% off for an early plea. This will mean you'll have to pay less of a fine, but will still be looking at about 4-points. Maybe more, but I would hope not.
2) Challenge the signage aspect of the roadworks. You will have to take photographs of the start of the 40mph limit to find out if they comply with regulations. The problem with this is that it is over 6-months ago and the roadworks may have changed by now.

Can you clarify if the roadworks are sitll there?
kaytliz
Thanks for the info.

On checking some of the other stuff that came with the summons there is a form from Avon and Somerset Constabulary that states the summons was issued on 21st April 2006. Doesn't this take it oustide the 6 months limit?
progbloke
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Sat, 22 Apr 2006 - 09:42) *
Date of the offence: 07/10/2006 01:34am...the date of information/complaint is 06/04/2006


That's remarkably handy... dry.gif The information has to be laid withion six months of the offence - the summons can be dated/served/issued later, so no mileage on that, I'm afraid sad.gif
Blackbird
QUOTE (firefly @ Sat, 22 Apr 2006 - 12:17) *
Hi there,
Two options (as I see it):

1) Plead guilty and take the hit. You'll get the standard 33% off for an early plea. This will mean you'll have to pay less of a fine, but will still be looking at about 4-points. Maybe more, but I would hope not.
2) Challenge the signage aspect of the roadworks. You will have to take photographs of the start of the 40mph limit to find out if they comply with regulations. The problem with this is that it is over 6-months ago and the roadworks may have changed by now.

Can you clarify if the roadworks are sitll there?


Another victim of the camera that 'raised' 1.5 million.
Unfortunately the roadworks were removed some time ago ............... and the signage was correct angry.gif

Regards
kaytliz
Does anyone have any advice as to what I should say on the form with regards to my plea. Obviously I'm guilty of speeding even though I don't agree with the speed limit being in force at that time, but does it make any difference whether I plead guilty by post or at court?

Also, does anyone have any idea of what the fine maybe? do they take into account the time of day, conditions of road etc?

Thanks for all your help so far
kaytliz
I have also posted on safespeed, but the consenus seems to be that this is the place to come with queries.

I posted this and I would be grateful if someone could answer my question at the end.

I admit that you could take it as 'driving without due care and attention' for the fact that I must have missed the speed signs. But please note that at that time of night without any form of lighting on that stretch of motorway other than my headlights I was concentrating solely on the road. There appeared to be no road works active that would hint there would be any other speed limit as all cones were on the side of the road, confirmed by the picture sent with my summons.

I am very gratefull for all the help I have so far received, but would it be possible for someone to answer my question in regards to potential fine and whether pleading by post or at court makes any difference.

Many Thanks
Maths For Fun And Insight
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Sun, 23 Apr 2006 - 20:41) *
would it be possible for someone to answer my question in regards to potential fine

See points table.
kaytliz
I kinada go my hopes up when i read the link in regards to temporary speed limits not being endorsable, but then I noticed the part where motorways are endorsable.

Can anyone tell me whether it makes any real difference turning up for court instead of pleading by post as it is a long way to travel.

It has been mentioned to me (not by this site) that if i reply by post i should put in a covering letter.

Any advice would be appreciated

Thanks
Rallyman72
Unfortunately the site you have been directed to is out of date - temporary speed limits are endorsable and have been since, IIRC, 2001.

This table is more up to date.
kaytliz
Sorry to keep asking, but does it make any difference whether I plead by post or turn up at the court. Also if I turn up at court what can I expect to happen, and what am I expected to do?

Thanks
Rallyman72
Your plea just need be by post.

For the trial proper turning up at court in your best bib and tucker (i.e. well dressed and clean) will make you stand out as a better citizen than the 'scum' that generally frequent magistrates courts.

As such you stand a chance of being treated a bit more along the lines of 'I can see someone who, but for the grace of god, could be me' from a slightly more earthbound magistrate than most (I think we had a bit of that in our case). The penalty may, as a result, be marginally less.
kaytliz
One of many things I don't understand is why the speed limit would be in force at that time at that point of the motorway as the picture clearly shows all cones on the side of the road and there appeared to be no roadworks taking place. Also there was nothing wrong with the road conditions.

Surely when conditions are returned to a previous state (ie no roadworks taking place), then the temporary speed limit should be removed???? Or is that over simplified????
patdavies
That is definitely oversimplified. the TRO (Traffic Regulation Order) that gives authority to impose the limit will say something like "until xxxxx date or the works are completed"; it will not say " only when the road is coned".

It is perfectly possible that the cones were removed overnight to allow traffic to flow freely, but that the speed limit was still necessary as crash barriers, etc. were incomplete.


However, you say that this was a GATSO. Do you remember seeing the camera? If it was being powered by a generator (as opposed to mains) then it is not being operated within its type approval. This would invalidate the S20 certificate.

Others more knowledgable than I will jump in here I am sure.
Blackbird
QUOTE (patdavies)
It is perfectly possible that the cones were removed overnight to allow traffic to flow freely, but that the speed limit was still necessary as crash barriers, etc. were incomplete.
However, you say that this was a GATSO. Do you remember seeing the camera? If it was being powered by a generator (as opposed to mains) then it is not being operated within its type approval. This would invalidate the S20 certificate.

Spot on, I know this site well.
QUOTE
as crash barriers, etc. were incomplete
there was a crawler lane being built and the camera was situated where all the plant and equipment was being stored.
The camera was generator powered for one or two days (unlike those on the eastbound Almondsbury interchange - M32 cameras recently) but I have no record of the days.
kaytliz
Quick question abou the summons bundle I received. The bundle contains 3 pictures of my acr from behind.
The first two are pictures of the rear of my car driving through the lines on the road and the third picture is a close up of my number plate.

My question is whether these pictures are used in court to confirm the speed being travelled and if so is it likely that the quality of the picture they have available to them is better than the quality of the picture I received?

The reason I ask is that you can see the lines on the road in the first picture, but there is no way I can tell how many lines I passed to judge the speed as they just disappear into blackness before the point of my car in the second picture. If they have a better quality picture then obviously they can confirm the speed, but if they didn't could they convict solely on the radar measurement?

Thanks

Dave
patdavies
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Tue, 25 Apr 2006 - 16:13) *
The reason I ask is that you can see the lines on the road in the first picture, but there is no way I can tell how many lines I passed to judge the speed as they just disappear into blackness before the point of my car in the second picture. If they have a better quality picture then obviously they can confirm the speed, but if they didn't could they convict solely on the radar measurement?


I believe that the photographs presented in Court are better quality. However, they are not allowed to be enhanced beyond enlargement.

You should not be convicted on the radar evidence alone. The radar provides the primary evidence; the distance travelled as measured by the lines provides the secondary (collaborative) evidence. There is equipment/software that lets the scammers measure using relative sizes etc. on the photographs where there are no lines.
andy_foster
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Sat, 22 Apr 2006 - 12:31) *
On checking some of the other stuff that came with the summons there is a form from Avon and Somerset Constabulary that states the summons was issued on 21st April 2006. Doesn't this take it oustide the 6 months limit?


15 days to issue a summons for speeding doesn't sound right to me.
Are you sure that 21st April was the issue date, not merely that date it was posted?
What dates are on the actual summons itself?
kaytliz
QUOTE (andy_foster @ Wed, 26 Apr 2006 - 19:53) *
15 days to issue a summons for speeding doesn't sound right to me.
Are you sure that 21st April was the issue date, not merely that date it was posted?
What dates are on the actual summons itself?


It's probably me being confused but the 'Summons' as I take it is the HMCS headed paper requesting my attendance at court at a date and time. The date of information/complaint was 06/04/2006 and printed on 10/04/2006. The 'Summons' bundle also contained other pages one of which is 'Avon and Somerset Constabulary' headed paper. It is made up of 3 sections - Section A, Section B, Section C

Section A is titled 'Notice to Defendant Proof by Written Statement' and is addressed to myself

Section B is titled 'Certificate of service (For police use only) and it is this that stated I was served the summonses on 21st day of April 2006.

Section C is titled 'To be completed only if a not guilty plea'

Also, while I have some attention, I was wondering whether my previous drink driving in 2000 (sorry not timed out as previously stated) for which I received a 12 month ban + £50 fine (no points) is going to have a negative effect, and if so does turning up at court have any meaningful effect as it is a 2 hour drive each way.
patdavies
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Wed, 26 Apr 2006 - 21:01) *
The date of information/complaint was 06/04/2006 and printed on 10/04/2006.



This is the one that must be within 6 month of the alleged offence
andy_foster
If you scan the summons and bundle, remove personally identifiable details and post (instructions in the FAQ), we can look for fatal flaws in the evidence. Might not help, but can't hurt.
kaytliz
QUOTE (andy_foster @ Wed, 26 Apr 2006 - 23:20) *
If you scan the summons and bundle, remove personally identifiable details and post (instructions in the FAQ), we can look for fatal flaws in the evidence. Might not help, but can't hurt.


Thanks Andy, the links to the scanned documents are below.






















I also had the 'plea form' and 'statement of means form' which I have'nt scanned

Any feedback would be appreciated
Maths For Fun And Insight
QUOTE (kaytliz @ Sat, 22 Apr 2006 - 09:42) *
5. Location of offence (exact location as it appears on the NIP: important): M4 Eastbound Junction 19-18

Isn't there a locus defence here? I think that this is a distance of 7 or more miles.

Edit: here's a locus link: http://forums.pepipoo.com/index.php?showtopic=8795
kaytliz
Just wonering if anyone else has had a chance to have a look at the summons bundle I scanned in.

As you can see I sent the NIP back almost instantly as unfortunately I didn't know about this website and had never heard of a PACE witness statement.

If i plead guilty and i mention it was an unfamiliar road, good road conditions, no traffic, would that help with mitigation or will they think I'm trying to make an excuse. I'm finding it hard to come up with a mitigation statement that to a judge wont sound like I'm just making excuses.
andy_foster
Other than the potentially vague locus, the summons bundle seems to be sound.

Regarding mitigation, I'd suggest stressing that you accept that you have broken the law and have no excuse, whilst stating the reasons why it wasn't as dangerous/serious as the facts might suggest - e.g. clear motorway, no roadworks, etc.
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