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 Motorists Under Attack

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Assassin
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PostSubject: Motorists Under Attack   Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:29 pm

As motorists we have come under attack from the previous Government as we are a source of revenue, but why? such revenue does not affect inflation and is easily obtained as people with cars have money, or at the least an asset which can be siezed and sold if there is a refusal to pay any fines. Basically we are easy targets, so how do the Government get away with it? an interesting question which needs answering; in many cases it uses an individuals own apathy against them, how many will just pay up and accept their financial losses and the points on their license, so what if i contest a ticket and how can i do it.

Some figures have recently been released which show at least 50% of contested tickets are upheld, in some areas its as high as 80%, so if you accept the ticket and pay up you have a 100% chance of being convicted, and if you contest it you have only a minimum of 50% of a conviction, or as low as a 20% chance of a conviction depending on your location.

Defending yourself is relatively easy if you take the time to do a little research, often this will put you in a considerably strong position and you will end up with a warning, and a warning to many is better than a £60 fine and points on your licence, then of course there is the additional insurance you would attract on top of this fine, and in some instances it could be your job.

Only today i contested a ticket and it was upheld, i also submitted a claim against the council issuing the ticket for my expenses concerning my defence of the ticket, they may try to wriggle out of paying, if they try this i will do what they do to debtors, pass it over to a debt collection agency who will collect on my behalf, and add their own costs in collecting to the council's final bill.
Just before Christmas i was issued a parking ticket, the council have assumed responsibility for parking enforcement from the Police and as we all know they encourage parking wardens to issue as many tickets as possible, although they deny it, but several councils have been caught out lying. Their claim was that i was not parked inside a marked parking bay, and no i was not, my car was literally too wide for the parking bay even though the wheels were only 1/2 inch off the kerb which is as reasonably close as you can get without damaging its expensive alloy wheels and tyres. Having found this ticket i immediately set about taking pictures of my parked car from ALL angles to show it was as close to the kerb as is reasonably possible, and even with this the outer wheels could not fit into the parking bay. Out came my measuring tape which is always in the vehicle, and the bay was measured and pictures taken of the tape from a long shot to a very tight shot which actually showed its dimensions. Once back into the office i checked the legislation concerning the sizes of parking bays and compared them to my measurements, basically the parking bay was long enough, but not wide enough, so illegal, so i contested this ticket. All photos were backed up to a DVD and printed out as well so they could be used as evidence to contest the ticket, and i returned the ticket with a letter informing them i was contesting the ticket, but not the reasons why i was contesting it. By return of post came an appointment time and date, and i attended, i presented my evidence and the ticket was immediately quashed.

One example of speeding was when one of our company vehicles was caught on a speed camera, we immediately returned the ticket unanswered and asked for a photograph so we could identify the driver, this was returned, and as it was a Gatso camera it took a picture of the rear of the vehicle, and not the drivers face, we immediately returned a letter informing the Police we could not identify the driver. Once again another letter arrived from the Police informing us it was a legal requirement to identify the driver, we returned this with another letter informing them we could not identify the driver as they had not sent us a picture of the drivers face, without this we were unable to do so, but if they liked they could interview all our staff at a time and place of our convenience so they could investigate and try to identify the driver, they declined. Suddenly it "was not in the public interest" for them to investigate, in reality they could spend hours investigating and spend thousands of £££s doing so and all for a paltry £60 fine.

One of our trucks was caught speeding in London, it was alleged he was doing 86 MPH through the middle of London, rubbish, all trucks are speed limited to 56MPH, a letter to the Police force concerned identified the speed camera used, and a little research began, it showed a foible of these cameras was when used incorrectly against unladen flatback trucks they showed excessively high speed readings, and not the actual speed the truck was doing. If a truck was doing less than 12 MPH this situation occured, as we had the time of the alleged offence and the tacho reading, it showed the truck was travelling at 8MPH at the time of the offence. Case dismissed.

Quite recently myself, two of our truck drivers, and one of our van drivers were reported for summons for using mobile phones while driving, we attended court and i defended all of us just for spite. I got to cross examine both Police officers and asked them both the same questions, could they describe what we were all wearing, could they describe our mobile phones, they answered no to both questions and this cast doubt in the magistrates minds. I presented the original sales receipts for both trucks which showed the installation of hands free kits with steering wheel controls, and receipts from an aftermarket supplier of hands free kits for both vans, than asked why they thought we were using mobile phones when we all had hands free kits, as did all our company vehicles, and a copy of our company policy which clearly states all company vehicles are fitted with hands free kits. In addition we photographed all the hands free kits in all the vehicles and presented them as evidence, the magistrates asked what we were using if they were not mobile phones, we all pulled two way radios from our pockets and explained we used these for communication when we ran escort vehicles and heavy loads, case dismissed and costs awarded.

In one instance one of our Project Managers was stopped for speeding, which he was, and instead of a FPN (fixed penalty notice) he was reported for summons, he asked why and the Police officer admitted he had run out of run out of FPN tickets. All our employees are advised on what protocols to follow, this is always to be polite when stopped, give no information other than their name and address, and the company name and address as the vehicle is obviously registered to the company, and nothing more, they are to record the name and collar numbers of the officer/s involved in stopping them. Upon hearing this we wrote to the Superintendant at Police headquarters for the area concerned and asked a few questions, one was why should my employee be reported for summons for an offence which should have been dealt with by a FPN, this means he has to attend court in that area, take time off work and inconvenience himself and the company, and all because a Police officer failed to take out a sufficient number of FPN tickets. The reply was the usual, "it was not in the public interest" and the case was dropped.

In the case of FPN's local authorities and the Police exploit peoples apathy as most will simply pay up without question, so for them its easy money with no conflict, and in many cases the Police will stop a motorist for a vague and spurious reason and try to get the motorist to incriminate themselves by talking themselves into admission of an offence, the Police always said "you have the right to remain silent" so follow that advice. One example of this is where the Police stopped a youngster in his pimped up hot hatch, they claimed he was doing 48MPH along a stretch of road, immediately he fell into the trap and tried to defend himself and said "no i wasn't i was only doing 38MPH, it was only a 30MPH road so he had instantly incriminated himself by admitting an offence. Always remember no matter how nice a Police officer is when he stops you, what seems like an innocent chat is actually an interrogation, and should be treated as such.

With a war on motorists in the UK, you can defend yourself, your wallet, and save your licence if you know how.
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maadmaan10
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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:20 am

Well said Mr Cynic..... lol!
Seriously though, you are absolutely right.
However I must point out that where the Civil Enforcement is concerned (traffic wardens in old English);

While there have been a few cases where tickets have been issued unjustly, I used to supervise a contract on behalf of a large council. I worked for a company called NSL Service group ltd. WE had very strict guidelines and a strict moral code we worked to. As a result I would often have "words" with the council regarding the number if tickets issued. While they did not issue targets, there were "expectations".
When these expextations were not met, I was quizzed as to why?
Now while I will be the first to admit that some of my chaps were a little more vigilant than others - our code of practice prevented us from issuing unjust/incorrect tickets. As a result our "upheld" figure was very high.. Catch 22.

This does not mean to say that mistakes never happen, but I can hand on heart state that NSL operate in a correct and proper manner. They also now operate the largest proportion of contracts around the country. This also includes vehicle removal/tow aways/impounding amongst many other services.

There, I've had my say...hehe

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:39 pm

Unfortunately not a cynic, just a realist who drove 87,000 miles last year alone, and unfortunately i see the best and worst of such situations much more than the commuters and regular drivers, and over far more of the country than most.

Let me list what i have witnessed from one local authority alone.

Enforcement officers, as they call them, removing snow from a snow covered road to reveal double yellow lines to ticket a car which was stuck so he could photograph it as well as ticket it.
Enforcement officers ticketing vehicles parked on a section of road which was recently resurfaced and had not had its double yellow lines reinstated so people were actually parked legally as there were no road markings.
Enforcement officers deliberately holding up delivery drivers who are allowed 20 minutes to load or unload, subject to local restrictions, they would photograph the vehicle and note the time and then challenge the driver to delay them over the 20 minutes, then ticket them for excess loading times.
Ticketing waiting trucks in a designated waiting area where they had to display a pass and wait in a queue to be unloaded, the security staff had five passes to allocate so there were never more than five trucks queing, and two wardens worked this area all day and issued every waiting truck with a ticket.

In addition Police forces use or abuse the system to manipulate their crime statistics, in one county i was stopped four times over the Christmas period for suspected drink driving, in every instance i asked for the reason i was stopped, and never answered, and in exch instance i was breathlysed, but why? I do not drink so they can't use the excuse they smelled alcohol on my breath, now a complaint has gone to the force concerned as random breathlysers are illegal.

There are good and bad, and one area we worked in had the original Police employed traffic wardens, they were superb and assisted us and everyone else legitimately working there, they issued every work vehicle with a note on headed notepaper and even coned off an area for our company vehicles to park, another letter went to the chief constable, this time praising their staff for their common sense and assistance, a very nice letter came back to us.
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maadmaan10
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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:23 am

Enforcement officers, as they call them, removing snow from a snow covered road to reveal double yellow lines to ticket a car which was stuck so he could photograph it as well as ticket it.
ILLEGAL - REPORT IT

Enforcement officers ticketing vehicles parked on a section of road which was recently resurfaced and had not had its double yellow lines reinstated so people were actually parked legally as there were no road markings.
ILLEGAL - REPORT IT ( a parking suspension notice should be used for this)

Enforcement officers deliberately holding up delivery drivers who are allowed 20 minutes to load or unload, subject to local restrictions, they would photograph the vehicle and note the time and then challenge the driver to delay them over the 20 minutes, then ticket them for excess loading times.
IF YOU CAN PROVE IT- REPORT IT

Ticketing waiting trucks in a designated waiting area where they had to display a pass and wait in a queue to be unloaded, the security staff had five passes to allocate so there were never more than five trucks queing, and two wardens worked this area all day and issued every waiting truck with a ticket.
THIS ONE is obviously a "local" arrangement but if it "signed" but NOT adhered to it should be reported.


These are ALL scenarios which are covered by NSL's work ethic and would NOT be tolerated . However, the contract managers/supervisors cannot be in all places at all times so things like this MUST BE REPORTED. I have to say that if NSL had every contract nationwide, these would not happen as they are unethical.

I have also in the past done 100,000+ miles per year and you're right- you get to see it all! In fact even at the momemt I avrerage about 400 miles per day and it can be quite an eye opener, especially when you see some of the idiotic things done by "drivers" - really does make you wonder if many of them actually have a licence. Of course we all know that---lot's of them don't and it's those buggers which push our premiums up.

As for random breath testing, yes it is illegal at the moment but I can see the day coming when it will be allowed and I for one will support that and drug testing.

I am pleased to note that you will also take the time to praise though - we are all sometimes too quick to criticise/complain but then very slow to offer praise .....'tis the British way I believe lol!

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:26 pm

Been reported!!!!!

Been reported!!!!!

Been reported and with CCTV evidence from a local retailer which have mysteriously disappeared.

This has been reported and with security camera evidence from the site (5 cameras with different views) and two adjacent businesses also who supplied CCTV footage, and all this has mysteriously disappeared.

This complaint was then re-submitted with copies of all the evidence and sent by registered post so we have a recipient, signature, and a name; and yes there are multiple copies and also the original footage which we have access to.

Not a fan of complaining and not providing praise where praise is due, often we find many people are willing to help as in a recent case where my offside rear light blew a bulb, and it happened just as a Police car pulled out behind me so they stopped me. They informed me i had a blown bulb and said could i get it repaired as quickly as possible, but no mention of any tickets and having to submit it for testing by an MOT testing station. I carry spare bulbs so it was done straight away and the Police held the torch so i could see what i was doing. Ironically as we pulled away i followed them for about a mile and one of there rear light bulbs blew so i stopped them and informed them, i even gave them a bulb to replace theirs with, it gave new meaning to Kismet.
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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:54 pm

Fascinating reading! Nothing to contribute really other than to say I too praise where appropriate and don't just moan. STAND UP FOR YOUR RIGHTS. cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:37 am

One thing i find is the widening gulf between the two sides is widening even more.

On the one hand we have a side which will use any tricks to issue tickets for revenue, and on the other there are the decent who will try to prevent such occurences by applying a little common sense.
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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:57 am


I have just received a parking ticket.
I was in a local car park after 6pm so no fee applies but I have been given a ticket because my drivers side wing mirror was overhanging in to the next bay due to the small parking spaces. WTF.

TJ

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:49 am

No fee applies, so why the hell did they issue you with a ticket?

I'm sure Assassin will have something to say about this. You don't want to see him when he's annoyed, you wouldn't like him when he's annoyed. I believe he too turns green and his neck starts swelling!!! affraid

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Mon Jan 16, 2012 6:07 am

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PostSubject: Re: Motorists Under Attack   Mon Jan 16, 2012 11:27 pm

Jason, challenge the ticket as it is very defined in law that the relationship of the car parking space and the vehicle is based upon the wheels, and the centreline of the wheels at that. If they were within the marked lines of the space then you are legally parked. Also check the width of the parking spaces as often you will find they are below that stipulated, and if this is the case they cannot uphold a ticket.
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