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Fact or Fiction?

Here are a few myths around speed enforcement.


"If you don't declare who the driver was, you can't get prosecuted"

Fiction. Despite a number of high profile cases, simply claiming that you "don't know who was driving" won't get you off the hook - quite the opposite actually. The Road Traffic Act states that you must disclose the details of the driver responsible for the offence, as you must know who was in control of your vehicle at any given time. Failing to supply these details could result in the case being heard at court and a large fine and up to six points being the outcome. You must also always keep your log book details up to date and notify the DVLA of any address changes.  Failure to do this can also result in up to a £1,000 fine.


"It is unfair to prosecute people for speeding at night when it is quiet and there is no traffic"

Fiction. The crash rate doubles at night due to higher vehicle speed, more alcohol consumption, tiredness and reduced visibility. Therefore complying with speed limits is important at all times.


"Safety cameras are a just another tax for motorists"

Fiction. It is impossible to opt out of paying tax, whereas a careful driver who adheres to the law, will avoid paying a fine. Drivers breaking the law by speeding, using a mobile phone or not wearing a seatbelt, for example, whilst driving will pay. Safety cameras and camera vans are placed where they will help save lives and where there has been a significant speed and/or casualty problem.


"You can get reflective spray or cover which obscures your number plate"

Fiction. Whilst the claim is made by several products, tests have yet to find any form of spray or cover which obscures speed camera flashes. 


"If you get a £100 fixed penalty, send a cheque for £100.01 and you'll avoid the points"

Fiction. A particular favourite of mates down the pub, the "1p cheque" theory is one that has been around for years. The idea is that the points can only be added once all financial transactions have been completed. The offender receives a £100 fine, but sends a cheque for £100.01 so the camera partnership then send a 1p cheque back that never gets banked. The theory has been debunked and the only thing that this method is likely to achieve is an additional charge for wasting police time and attempting to pervert the course of justice.