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  1. Not a situation that I've come across, but seen this on the Ask the Police website. I have always thought that you would have to hold a UK Driving Licence in order to supervise a learner driver 😯 Does anyone know where this is stated in legislation?
  2. Call to review law after court ruling on driver who filmed crash scene on phone. Mobile phone use: Campaigners want an update to legislation Date - 1st August 2019 By - Nick Hudson - Police Oracle 3 Comments High Court judges who overturned a police prosecution of a man caught filming behind the wheel have said their decision is not a “green light” to use mobile phones while driving. Lawyers and safety campaigners called on the Government to review legislation following yesterday’s ruling. Builder Ramsey Barreto was convicted of driving while using a phone after he filmed at the scene of a road accident in Ruislip, west London. But on Wednesday wo senior judges found that the law he was prosecuted under does not ban mobile phone use for reasons other than "interactive communication" – such as calls and messages. However, Lady Justice Thirlwall and Mr Justice Goss said motorists could still face prosecution for careless or dangerous driving and there was no "green light" for drivers to use phones for other purposes. Lady Justice Thirlwall said: "The legislation does not prohibit all use of a mobile phone held while driving. "It prohibits driving while using a mobile phone or other device for calls and other interactive communication (and holding it at some stage during that process)." She added: "It should not be thought that this is a green light for people to make films as they drive. "As I have already said, driving while filming events or taking photographs, whether with a separate camera or with the camera on a phone may be cogent evidence of careless driving and possibly of dangerous driving. "It is criminal conduct which may be prosecuted and on conviction may result in the imposition of penalties significantly more serious than those which flow from breach of the regulations. "The same applies to any other use of the phone while driving." Mr Barreto was seen by a police officer holding his phone up to his car window for 10 to 15 seconds as he drove past the scene of a serious accident in August 2017. He was convicted in July last year, after a magistrates' court trial, of driving while using a hand-held mobile phone – under the terms of the Road Traffic Act and the Road Vehicles Regulations. But after his conviction was overturned on appeal at Isleworth Crown Court in October last year, the Director of Public Prosecutions launched a legal challenge. DPP lawyers argued at a hearing in London in April that the legislation prohibits all phone use while driving. However, upholding the Crown Court's decision, Lady Justice Thirlwall said the answer to the appeal was in the interpretation of the law "in the terms that Parliament chose to enact it, rather than as it might be assumed to be". Mr Barreto's lawyers said the law, which was most recently redrafted in 2003, has "failed to keep pace" with technological advances in smartphones. His solicitor Emma Patterson, of Patterson Law, said her firm had previously argued that Parliament should have "seized the opportunity" to update the law when it revised the penalties for the offence. She added: "We have always said that it is dangerous to interact with any type of device whilst driving a motor vehicle on a road and it was always open to the police or prosecution to pursue an allegation of driving without due care and attention, or perhaps even dangerous driving. "That was never the issue. The issue was that the law as it stood created anomalies and confusion. "We now have the clarity in this judicial precedent to match what we had been correctly advocating on behalf of our clients for many, many years." Francis Noakes, of the Get Licensed Driving School, said the case showed prosecutions are "far from straightforward". He added: "When it comes to road safety, we simply can't allow for any uncertainty to exist. "I'd urge lawmakers to revisit and tighten the legislation as a matter of urgency." The penalty for driving while using a hand-held mobile phone is six points on an offender's licence and a fine, up to a maximum of £1,000. View On Police Oracle
  3. Road to new legislation is far from smooth for campaigners The chaos that has engulfed Parliament amid Brexit may hinder the progress of eagerly awaited draft laws which would enhance legal protection for officers who pursue helmetless moped riders. The Police Federation for England and Wales (PFEW) cautiously welcomed the news last May that the Home Office was drafting legislation to ensure skilled police drivers are “protected”. PFEW was awaiting the results of the government’s consultation when it received the news there will no longer be time in the parliamentary diary because Brexit-related work must take priority. Instead, the Home Office hopes the same ends will be achieved through Sir Henry Bellingham’s Emergency Response Drivers private members bill. It was originally introduced as a ten-minute bill in December 2017 but was shelved after government objections in March. The bill was due to have its second reading on November 23 but Sir Christopher Chope, who is notorious for blocking private member’s bill on principle, raised an objection. Sir Christopher invoked the ire of activists earlier this year when he blocked the progress of a bill to make upskirting a separate offence and Finn’s Law, which would increase the penalties for those who injure police animals. This, however, did not stop him submitting several of his own private members bills last month. The Emergency Response Drivers Bill second reading has been rescheduled to March. PFEW Pursuits Lead Tim Rogers, who has been campaigning to change the law for more than seven years, told Police Oracle the government has some concerns the bill will not match the issues covered in the consultation and that it will include ambulance and fire engine drivers, who are not trained to the same standard as police officers. He said: “If you compare officers to the careful and competent drivers standard the techniques they use are illegal. “The deal officers get is 'as long nothing goes wrong that’s fine and we won’t do anything about it but when something does happen you’re on your own'. “Roads policing officers are highly trained professionals who go to work and carry out these manoeuvres every day but that isn’t recognised in law. “It’s just stupid. “Even the IOPC came out and said officers shouldn’t be compared to the careful and competent drivers standard.” Mr Rogers said Policing Minister Nick Hurd had given himself and PFEW chairman John Apter personal assurances last week he remained committed to the issue and will soon issue a ministerial statement confirming this is the case. It is still hoped the bill will gain Royal Assent by 2019/2020, he said. A Home Office spokesman said: “We recognise the difficult job that police drivers do every day to keep road users and the wider public safe. “That’s why we have worked closely with the Police Federation, other government departments and groups representing road users and those advocating road safety to review the law, guidance, procedures and processes surrounding police pursuits. “Ministers are expecting soon to be in a position to announce the next steps following the consultation. This will be subject to final clearance across government.” View on Police Oracle
  4. Confusion over why money has not been spent after three years. One million pounds of government roads policing funding has been gathering dust for three years. Concerns were raised about what had happened to the money, approved in 2015, at a roads policing conference in January as “equipment only gets more expensive”. Delegates were later told the cash had been transferred to Surrey Police. A department for transport spokesman told Police Oracle there had been no delays in handing over the funding to the police and it had been transferred from Sussex to West Mercia Police. The money was intended to fund forensic roads policing equipment. A National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) spokeswoman confirmed there had been no government delay. After repeated Police Oracle requests for clarification to West Mercia, Surrey and Sussex Police a West Mercia spokesman confirmed the cash was still with Sussex Police but could not explain the three-year delay. A comment from Assistant Chief Constable Martin Evans of West Mercia Police last week stated he “updated on the circa £1 million” when he stepped up as NPCC lead for forensic collision investigation in July 2017. "A significant amount of work had taken place to try and secure a national procurement for laser scanners with this money for those forces that required them but unfortunately as is the case in many areas currently this has proved unfeasible due to forces using different systems, some of which still have a number of years to go on their existing contract, differing processes carried being out within different teams etc,” he said. "As a result a national procurement was not possible. “I have therefore recently conducted an audit across all forces to identify those in most need of Laser scanners and my intention is to provide them individually with the funding required from the DFT money to be able to purchase the equipment that they require themselves. “The money has not been transferred but remains with Sussex Police pending the purchase of equipment.” But when Police Oracle asked his office to clarify whether any work had been carried out on the national procurement before July 2017, we were told he did not wish to comment further. Neither would he explain what kind of lasers he was referring to, whether he was replacing old equipment or commissioning new scanners and when it became clear national procurement would not be possible. Police Oracle lodged a second request to speak directly with ACC Evans last week and was told he would not be in the office until Friday. On Friday - three weeks after our first request - a West Mercia Police spokesman said ACC Evans would not be available until next week. View on Police Oracle
  5. An interesting blog from WMP Traffic Unit about research they have completed on Killed or Serious Injury RTC involving cyclists and why they are now going to be prosecuting more drivers for 'due care and attention' offences https://trafficwmp.wordpress.com/2016/09/09/junction-malfunction-and-a-new-dawn/#comments
  6. XA84

    Advanced Driving

    Hey guys and girls, Just wondering whether officers can take their standard driving course or advanced drivers course if they have speeding penalty points? Thanks XA84
  7. A SWAN was taken into police custody (sort of) by officers last week after it was seen running along a busy motorway The bird was spotted near junction 10 of the A1(M) for the A507 at Stotfold last Wednesday (March 9) trying to take off by using the road as a runway – much to the surprise of drivers who had to swerve to avoid it. Full story
  8. Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-35472617 Clearly, there appears to be a gap here - the person(s) in charge (or probably more correctly; had possession) of the vehicle at the time of the incident should be held liable, but appears keeping quiet saves you from the more serious prosecution. Is it possible for a civil claim of damages to be made against those individuals who had possession of the vehicle at the time (if they are known)? i.e could it be argued that witholding the details of the driver on the day renders them liable?
  9. I saw this on Facebook (tyre pressures are always a fun topic on the camper van groups, especially when you drive a Japanese import): From 19/11/15: Mr X (names have been changed to protect the innocent...er... guilty) was fined £80, witha £20 victim surcharge, £100 costs, and three penalty points added to his licence. He had been foung guilty of using a vehicle with an underinflated tyre. and then this: A man has been given three points on his licence for having an illegal back tyre. Mr X (again) was found guilty of driving his car with an over-inflated back tyre at Horsham Magistrates' Court on October 29. The 37-year-old was fined £380 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £20 and court costs of £100. Now, I assume an under inflated tyre would be fairly obvious to most people but how do you tell an overinflated tyre? And surely, the easiest way to sort an overinflated tyre is let some of the air out? So why not a simple VDRS rather than a fine? In this case, he's a repeat offender, but even so it seems a bit steep. What about the points? Why give them on the 2nd offence and not the first? It's been a good while since I had to do any sort of traffic, and even then I don't think I ever looked at the tyres over and above checking the treads and sidewalls.
  10. Eebs

    Roads policing specials

    I was wondering what specific training roads policing specials get if they're specifically attached to traffic in your force (if any), and if they have any requirements, ie certain hours. ive tried looking it up but there isn't much, and I cannot find the 'checklist' if you want to call it that, that they get when they join (like re-doing your safe and lawful checklist) apolgoises if if this made no sense, thanks
  11. Chewie

    Our remit...

    Don your white cap, wind your window down an inch, stroke your beard (they're pretty much compulsory on traffic, aren't they?), and tut disapprovingly as you post your RPU related question and comments...
  12. Candles

    VIDEO - Lane Merge road rage

    The following video appears to show a road rage incident on the M58 approaching a closed lane... The comments seem to show a wide gap between views on what the rules are. I know what the rules are - interested to hear what others say on here!
  13. SC Plod

    Involvement in RTCs - Off Duty

    Hi everyone, I'm a new Special...loving it but still a lot to get to grips with! A friend of mine was involved in an RTC recently (no injuries, thankfully), where the driver of the second car was using his mobile phone when the collision happened. Afterwards, my friend said to me 'If only you'd been there with me!' which got me to thinking: If I was involved in, or came across, an RTC while I was off duty, and stopped to offer help before other emergency services arrived, and one of the other parties had been on their phone, or were evidently drunk, or I suspected they'd been committing an offence... what would my powers be? Bearing in mind that I'm off duty and not in uniform. Could I detain on suspicion of anything, until other units arrived? What can I do to stop the other party leaving if they wanted to? I feel like there's an obvious answer to it, but our training never touched on it so I'm not so sure... any advice or information would be appreciated!
  14. I notice CMPG has been quite active recently seizing foreign registered vehicles which should be registered here. I understand most seizures have been on behalf of DVLA for no VED. My question is how are they doing this? How do they prove the vehicle has been in the country too long? Or is it a simple case of person A driving round in foreign vehicle but being obviously resident here (electoral roll, has permanent accommodation etc)? There are loads of foreign vehicles knocking around here, I'd be interested in what I could do about them.
  15. Luke

    Roads Policing Guide

    Hey, Just wondering if anyone can recommend a good traffic/roads policing manual or guide? Ive seen these two below http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blackstones-Police-Manual-Policing-Manuals/dp/0198719000/ref=sr_1_10?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1422918022&sr=1-10&keywords=blackstones+police+manuals+2015 and http://www.amazon.co.uk/Road-Traffic-Blackstones-Practical-Policing/dp/0199559759 The first seems to indicate it is ideal for those going for the OSPRE exams so not sure if it is more just practice questions for this? The second was published in 2009 so could potentially be out of date by a few years. If anyone has any experience with either of the two books or can offer an alternative that would be great. Thanks Luke
  16. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/dramatic-rise-in-road-deaths-as-numbers-of-traffic-police-fall-10016058.html
  17. I have seen in other threads with regards to use of display of amber lights: (i)a road clearance vehicle; (ii)a vehicle constructed or adapted for the purpose of collecting refuse; (iii)a breakdown vehicle; (iv)a vehicle having a maximum speed not exceeding 25 mph or any trailer drawn by such a vehicle; (v)a vehicle having an overall width (including any load) exceeding 2.9 m; (vi)a vehicle used for the purposes of testing, maintaining, improving, cleansing or watering roads or for any purpose incidental to any such use; (vii)a vehicle used for the purpose of inspecting, cleansing, maintaining, adjusting, renewing or installing any apparatus which is in, on, under or over a road, or for any purpose incidental to any such use; (viii)a vehicle used for or in connection with any purpose for which it is authorised to be used on roads by an order under section 44 of the Act; (ix)a vehicle used for escort purposes when travelling at a speed not exceeding 25 mph; (x)a vehicle used by the Commissioners of Customs and Excise for the purpose of testing fuels; (xi)a vehicle used for the purpose of surveying; (xii)a vehicle used for the removal or immobilisation of vehicles in exercise of a statutory power or duty; My question is, I saw a National Grid marked car in my local city centre today exiting a customer car park with yellow lights flashing away whilst trying to leave the park entrance (which is then hard to get into the main line of traffic) to the main road. Looking at the above criteria I would assume that section (vii) would apply as electricity cables very often go over roads. When are they actually permitted to use them? They could have been off to or just left an important incident or work related duty but it makes me wonder if they were just used to gain easier access to the road against the traffic, since in my opinion they exited quite fast (but then again could have been a friendly driver from the main road allowing in - There are some! ). Any comments on this?
  18. Chief Rat

    Specials and Specialisms

    Here's one for you folks... How many Special Constables does it take to change a lightbulb.... Eh hang on wrong question With all of the austerity cuts that affect the servuce at the moment many departments have been reduced in size. I know our Roads Policing Unit has sustained a number of cuts with staff who have either retired , not replaced or alternatively moved back to district policing. To some degree not completely their places have been back filled by the use of Special Constables which in the case if my force is a new move towards further integration of regs and specials in specialised areas, where previously they were predominantly working within neighbourhood policing roles. Now ours haven't been given the authority to drive the RPU vehicles but in time this might change but it's early doors. I just wondered what it's like in other forces really. Does your force provide opportunities to specialise in RPU for instance and if so, what's your role like. Do you have greater freedom. What do you actually do or allowed to do. I'd be interested to know your thoughts. Thanks folks.
  19. Theruffellator

    What do you carry in an FPN Holder?

    This may sound like a bit of an obvious question and before anyone says FPN's.... [emoji23] Which traffic related tickets do you guys keep in your FPN holder/paperwork folder?
  20. Special Steve

    Powerful videos on Youtube

    I'm attaching a link for one of a series of videos that have been produced by an organisation called Learn2live and published on you tube. They take the form of vox-pops where traffic officers or members of victims families talk straight to the camera about real incidents they've been involved with. I don't know what the background is but I recommend them as a training tool, especially for young drivers. Here's the first which covers an officer talking drink driving: Here's the second which talks about a FLO and dealing with the family: finally here's the third that deals with a family's reaction: There are more but I haven't watched them yet. Steve (Edited for incorrect link)
  21. Hi all, I've got to go to court next week in relation to someone I reported for driving without insurance. He's pleaded guilty but is claiming special reasons why he shouldn't be given the relevant penalty points (he's subject to New Drivers Act 1995) - I've been called as a prosecution witness, does anyone know what sort of stuff I'll be asked? Thanks very much, F&V
  22. It seems that if a motorist does the decent thing and pulls into a bus lane or creeps forward at a red light that the prospect of getting fined for letting an emergency vehicle through is high. So the alternative is to just sit there and let the vehicle behind with lights and horn blaring wait until you move. Talk about adding stress onto the driver being in a situation where you can't do right for doing wrong. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2840164/Fines-fears-stop-cars-letting-999-vehicles-past-Lives-risk-automated-enforcement-means-drivers-fined-diverting-bus-lane-edging-red-light.html
  23. I thought this was interesting... Apparently a motorists insurance premium is lightly to increase after a no fault collision at a higher rate than after a fault collision When inquiring about this, apparently statistics back up the insurance companies. A driver who is at fault in a collision is more lightly to improve driving, therefore less lightly to be involved in another collision. Whereas a driver who is not at fault can believe his driving is good and not in need of improvement, and more lightly to be involved in another collision.
  24. Chief Rat

    Driver less Vehicles

    Business secretary says computer controlled vehicles will be trialled in three cities, and public funding offered for research The business secretary, Vince Cable, sits in a driverless car at the headquarters of the engineering firm Mira in the West Midlands. Driverless cars will be manoeuvering themselves around British streets from next year, the business secretary said on Wednesday, as he unveiled a review into the laws that ban them from the country's roads. Vince Cable said the computer controlled vehicles would be trialled in three cities from next year, adding that the government would make a £10m fund available for developing the technology in the UK. He said: "Today's announcement will see driverless cars take to our streets in less than six months, putting us at the forefront of this transformational technology and opening up new opportunities for our economy and society." It is illegal for cars to operate on UK roads without a driver in control. Semi-autonomous systems, including those available in cars such as the Volvo XC90, which control the speed of cars and keep them in lanes on motorways, require the driver to be fit and licensed to drive and have their hands on the steering wheel at all times to stay within the law. The Department for Transport will also begin a review of the laws governing road use, but the it could not provide a timescale for wider adoption beyond the saying that the report would be submitted to the government by the end of 2014. David Bruce, the director of AA Cars, pointed out that cars were already becoming increasingly automated with the introduction of assistance systems to aid parking and keeping vehicles in lane and a safe distance from the car in front. "However, there is a big leap of faith needed by drivers from embracing assistance systems to accepting the fully automated car. Two-thirds of AA members still enjoy driving too much to want a fully automated car," he said. Google's driverless cars hit the headlines and the public consciousness in May, when the search giant announced a new design. The technology, however, is very much at the prototype stage, with sensors and equipment costing around £90,000 over and above the cost of the vehicle itself. Consumer versions are likely to cost the same as a premium saloon or sports car initially, before they reach a more mass-market cost. The UK has various groups already working on driverless car technology, including experts at the University of Oxford and the engineering firm Mira, which provides autonomous vehicle technology to the military and has been testing driverless cars on a 850-acre site in the Midlands. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/30/driverless-cars-british-roads-next-year-vince-cable Who are the Police going to talk to when stopping a vehicle with no one inside them? ​Can you foresee a list of unforeseeable problems with this technology Do you fail to see the point of having a vehicle on the road that is empty of humans
  25. Government sets out new penalty regime which will hit law-breaking motorists and other criminals hard in the pocket Motoring groups warned that the increases could lead to a 'chilling effect' on drivers who felt they had been wrongly accused Photo: PA The maximum fine for speeding on the motorway is to be quadrupled to £10,000 as part of sweeping reforms to the penalties which can be imposed by magistrates, the Government has announced. Other fines for breaking the limit on dual carriageways and other roads will also increase four-fold from £1,000 to £4,000, along with the maximum fine for using a mobile telephone at the wheel. Motoring groups condemned the massive increases as “draconian” and warned they could deter innocent motorists from challenging speeding tickets in the court through fear that they could be hit with crippling penalties. For the first time magistrates will also get the power to impose unlimited fines for more serious offences such as careless driving or driving without insurance. Jeremy Wright, the justice minister, said: “Financial penalties set at the right level can be an effective way of punishing criminals and deterring them from further offending. Related Articles “Magistrates are the cornerstone of our justice system and these changes will provide them with greater powers to deal with the day-to-day offences that impact their local communities.” But motoring groups questioned the sharp increases and warned that it could lead to a “chilling effect” on drivers who felt they had been wrongly accused. Edmund King, president of the Automobile Association, said: “For the vast majority of drivers the prospect of the existing £2,500 fine is a pretty good deterrent against excessive speeding on the motorway. “We would not condone excessive speeding in any way but fines have to be proportionate to the offence and one has to question whether increasing the fines four-fold is proportionate, and it probably is not. “If we had more cops in cars on the motorway that would be a much more effective deterrent.” Rupert Lipton, director of the National Motorists Action Group, said the threat of being hit with a fine of up to £10,000 could stop motorists going to court to challenge unjust speeding tickets. “This massive increase is disproportionate and draconian,” he said. “I think it will have a serious chilling effect. We will find motorists will be deterred from going to court where they don’t believe they are guilty of an offence and there is a potential challenge.” He added: “For general speeding allegations you’re allowed to take a fixed penalty, currently £60 and three penalty points on your licence, or agree to complete a speed awareness course. “But if you wish to challenge it you can currently face six points and a £1,000 fine on non-motorway roads or £2,500 on the motorway. “I think that is enough of a deterrent for people who are thinking about taking a chance and going to court, but raising it four-fold is clearly an over-reaction. “The threat and the fear of a disproportionate fine would deter many from trying to seek justice.” Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “People who break the law should bear the consequences but this seems such a wholesale change to the system so you have to ask what was going so badly wrong before? “Ironically we know that speeding offences have declined over recent years and just last week the Department for Transport confirmed that even after taking congestion out of the equation recorded traffic speeds have been dropping for a decade on most types of roads.” New legislation for the higher fines has been laid in Parliament, and a Ministry of Justice spokesman said it would be the first change to the penalty structure since 1991. The government is collecting a record amount in fines, with £284 million taken in 2012-13. The changes are part of a major overhaul of fining powers in the lower courts which will apply to all types of crimes as well as motoring offences. The new fine structure will see fines for “level one” offences such as “unauthorised cycle racing on public ways” or being found drunk on a highway increase from £200 to £800, while people convicted of “level two” crimes such as riding a motorcycle without a crash helmet or being drunk in a football ground will see the maximum penalty rise from £500 to £2,000. Offences such as television licence evasion, selling of alcohol to a drunk person or being drunk and disorderly in a public place - known as “level three” offences - will rise from £1,000 to £4,000. “Level four” crimes such as motorway speeding, taxi touting and using a vehicle in a dangerous condition will rise from £2,500 to £10,000. In the highest category, “level five”, magistrates will be able to impose unlimited fines for the first time, mirroring the penalties that can already be imposed in the Crown court. The changes could come into force relatively quickly after they have been debated and approved by Parliament because legislation passed two years ago allows maximum fines in magistrates' courts to be extended. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10887161/Maximum-motorway-speeding-fine-set-to-rocket-to-10000.html Wonder how fast would a person be driving in order to receive a £10.000 fine? Considering most of the M/way network has no Police I doubt this would deter anyone from continuing the way they drive now. NWMPG, CMPG that is about it.
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