There are many things you think you know about speed cameras and the vans parked on the roadside – but how many of them are true?
You probably think you can get away with speeding if you’re a little over the limit or if the cameras only catch you on one side of the road.
But how many are these actually facts and which myths?
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Gareth Thomas, an officer in charge of speed reduction for seven years, let North WalesLive in his van to answer all the important questions and dispel some myths.
Gareth is a Go Safe Casualty Reduction Officer and former police officer, reports Wales Online who set the record for the things we actually “know” about speed cameras.
- 1 Is it true that speedvans always have to be visible?
- 2 Can officers only catch motorists driving in one direction?
- 3 Is it true that the 10 percent rule exists?
- 4 Are Officials Tax Collectors For The Government?
- 5 Can I be caught speeding more than once by the same camera on the same day??
- 6 Is it illegal to block a delivery truck’s view of the road?
- 7 Are the officers enforcing anything other than speeding?
- 8 Is It Illegal to Eat Behind the Wheel?
- 9 Is it illegal to flash the headlights to warn drivers of a fast bus?
- 10 How long do speed vans stay in a certain place?
- 11 What if i am caught speeding?
Is it true that speedvans always have to be visible?
No. There are no laws regarding visibility, so nothing prevents an officer from working in the dark.
But they don’t often choose it, claiming that visibility in itself is daunting.
Gareth said, “Legally we don’t have to be visible. I could disguise myself if I wanted to – but it’s all about fairness, education and accident prevention.
“Even if I parked my van and went for a walk somewhere, it would keep people from going too fast right away.”
Can officers only catch motorists driving in one direction?
No. Every car that drives past a delivery truck is recorded by the officer’s camera.
So if you exceed the speed limit, regardless of whether you are going in the same or opposite direction to the van, expect a parking ticket.
Is it true that the 10 percent rule exists?
Yes sir. You will not receive a ticket if your speed does not exceed the limit by more than 10 percent.
For example, driving at 35 km / h or more in a 30 km / h zone is recorded as a speeding violation.
However, Go Safe says the thresholds vary and are subject to change without notice. Officially, any over speeding occurs at a speed of 1 km / h above the limit, but most armed forces allow a deviation.
Are Officials Tax Collectors For The Government?
Gareth stated, “We’re not here to get numbers or to make money. We’re only here to catch people going too fast.
“If I get a day when no drivers are going too fast, then I know I’ve done my job.
“If I’ve worked an eight-hour shift, I just hope that at least one person was injured or an accident avoided that day.”
Can I be caught speeding more than once by the same camera on the same day??
The current position with this particular operator is that if you are caught twice within 20 minutes it will be treated as an offense.
Theoretically, a driver with a previously clean driver’s license could be caught several times on the same day – and thus threatened with disqualification according to the totting-up system.
If you are driven too fast too fast several times on the same journey and accept a fixed penalty for each journey, there is a risk of penalty point disqualification (accumulation).
Gareth says this can be easier than you might think, for example when multiple speed cameras are placed on the same street or highway.
However, if the offense is believed to have been committed “on the same occasion”, it is at the discretion of the court to award only one point for two or more offenses.
Whether or not crimes are considered to have been committed at the same time is a matter for the court.
They do not have to be committed at the same time, but they must be linked in some way.
So if, for example, the offense was committed within a few minutes, it may be possible to convince the court to only impose a number of points. Each case will depend on its facts.
Is it illegal to block a delivery truck’s view of the road?
Yes sir. Obstructing the field of vision of a transporter while it is in use is a criminal offense and can be prosecuted.
Are the officers enforcing anything other than speeding?
Yes sir. The officers make sure that you are buckled up and that you are not using your mobile phone while driving. Anyone caught breaking these laws will be prosecuted.
Is It Illegal to Eat Behind the Wheel?
No it is not. However, if you are distracted while snacking behind the wheel, the police could prosecute you for careless driving.
Gareth said, “It is recommended. I once looked at a lady and she was looking in the mirror and putting on lipstick.
“She rode cat eyes in the middle of the road and distracted. I recommended that she be prosecuted for careless driving.”
Is it illegal to flash the headlights to warn drivers of a fast bus?
If drivers choose to blink to warn others about a fast bus, they could be breaking the law.
Under Section 89 of the Police Act 1997, it is a criminal offense to “deliberately interfere with a police officer in the performance of his duties”.
However, Gareth says that while it is a criminal offense, it is very difficult to prove.
He said, “I don’t mind people blinking to warn them about the speed van – I just want to educate people and the van to act as a speed deterrent.”
How long do speed vans stay in a certain place?
For technical reasons, a speed van will only stop at a certain point for 90 minutes, said Gareth.
During his average eight hour shift, he usually visits three different locations in the region to which he has been ordered.
In certain areas, enforcement is usually carried out for a number of reasons including: death or serious injury to the site, speeds in the area have been rated as significantly high, and local speeding concerns have been raised and these concerns have been corroborated by a traffic speed survey.
What if i am caught speeding?
It all depends on the circumstances under which you were caught speeding and how much you drove over the limit.
The minimum fine for over speeding on UK roads is a £ 100 fine.
However, Gareth stated that the police may offer the option to attend a speed awareness course – an alternative to a fine and penalty points.
Gareth, said, “An accredited course is more likely to improve driving behavior, making our passengers safer.
“Courses are available to drivers who react quickly to the ‘clues’ and have driven no more than 10 percent plus 9 miles per hour over the advertised speed limit.”
For example, anyone traveling at more than 130 km / h on a motorway would not be offered the educational course.
Those who do not have a clean license at the time of office or have taken the course in the past three years are unlikely to be offering the Awareness course as an option.
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