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Caught at 100 MPH by speed cameras M25 - have i done everything i can?


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Hi,

 

Firstly thanks for all the help and advice in the past,

I have donated previously to help keep this fantastic resource continue it's good work.

 

As the title says I was caught on speed camera on the M25 a few months back,

I immediatly pleaded guilty as I knew on that day I was over the speed limit

( I am shocked by the amount though).

 

You will read from my letter below why I was speeding,

as I say in the letter it is no defence and completely agree it was wrong,

 

it was the first time in years I had forgot my son's vital medicine, two large mistake's in a day

- which is why I held my hands up straight away,

 

as mentioned in the letter the road was completely empty,

it was near midnight and the weather was good and clear

- again I realise it's not up to me to judge what speed is safe in those conditions.

 

My concern is we are away for two weeks starting on the court day,

in the requisition pack I received a yellow form saying there's no need to attend court when pleading guilty,

 

I tried to plead online the day we received the pack,

unfortunately the gov online system is not working for new cases as it's a new system,

I called the number, the receptionist took my details, name, case number and told me to return the forms by post,

 

I have filled in all paperwork and the income questionnaire and supplied proof that we are away

and that my son does indeed have this disability,

also proof that we had attended the London event and based on the camera time

it showed that we did indeed have to leave early.

 

I have a full clean license for nearly 30 years only ever having a past SP30 some ten years ago for 35mph in a 30 zone.

 

I dont want to court to think I'm showing any disrespect by not attending.

is there anything else you think I should do?

 

I have included the letter text below (will get the wife to check grammar and spelling before sending)

which I was going to include with my plea:

 

I am writing with regards to the charge of driving at a speed exceeding 70 miles an hour,

I wanted to ensure the court was aware that I immediately completed the first form which was addressed to my wife,

 

I notified Kent police that I was in fact the driver and pleaded guilty to the offence,

 

upon receiving the written charge (26th July) I tried to make a guilty plea online on the same day

– having received errors online and speaking to the plead helpline

– I was informed there where problems with the computer system

and that my case number was one of the one’s that wouldn’t work,

I left my details and have made my plea direct as enclosed.

 

We received a court date of 8th August,

My family and myself are away for two weeks starting from this date,

 

Our relatives and helped us take this break,

This has been booked for over 6 months,

I have enclosed proof,

 

I wanted to make it clear to the court that my non appearance should not be seen as any lack of respect for the court

or a sign that I do not take this offence very seriously.

 

I am a family man and have never been in trouble with the police before,

I have a full clean driving license and this serious offence has brought great shame on myself

which indeed reflects on my family – for this I am truly sorry.

 

I am fully aware that this serious matter could lead to a driving ban,

I am prepared to accept the courts decision and agree with what ever punishment is imposed,

I have included my drivers license and even though away will not drive until I receive the courts verdict.

 

I am shocked at the speed recorded,

I know it wont help my case but I wanted to let the court know

that I was aware that I was over the speed limit,

I honestly didn’t realise it was by that amount,

 

I mentioned my children,

My son George received tickets to a wrestling match at the 02 arena,

it is the second time just father and son have been out without the rest of the family,

he has a growth disability (endocrine system non functioning purity gland,

he is just one of 50 children in the UK to have this problem)

every day for 16 years he has had deep tissue injections

and has to take hydrocortisone tablets twice a day,

 

the last time he missed tablets was 6 years ago

and within an hour of felling unwell he was taken to East Surrey hospital

where he was taken directly into intensive care,

We never miss this daily tablet,

 

George realised later during the show that he had not taken his tablet and that we didn’t have any

after leaving early from the performance we also didn’t have them in the car,

again this like the above offence is totally irresponsible on my part,

 

we immediately headed home after George started to panic,

my wife drove towards us and we met at junction 5 the junction after the offence took place,

this is not meant to be a defence,

 

I understand what I did was wrong, as you can see from the pictures provided,

the road was completely empty and the weather was fine, dry and clear.

 

Finally, I feel I let my family down twice on this evening when it was supposed to be a celebration,

I can assure the court that this will not happen again, and I apologise to all concerned.

 

I am willing to attend the court directly after our return should I need to to accept a ban,

I will also pay the court courts and fines as soon as we return on 23rd August.

 

Mr xxx

 

 

Offence:

 

on 18/04/2016 drove motor vehicle on a motorway at a speed in excess of 70 mph

- speed recorded by means of HADECS 3 was 100mph.

 

I am not looking for any get out's - I just want to ensure I provide the details the court requires.

 

Thanks.

Edited by honeybee13
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Thanks for your reply, being dyslexic and bad with grammar, its a little embarrassing reading my post back, please excuse spelling and grammar, the letter will be checked before sending off to the court!

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Normally pleading guilty by proxy may see a higher penalty issued, in your bundle did you receive the MC100 form? If so did you complete this fully? This form is used to allow the Court to impose a financial penalty based on what you can afford to pay. If you did not get this then go to your local Court to obtain one fill it in and return to the court asap.

 

 

Side note, you could have attended the local Hospital in regards to the missed medication and they may have/should been able to give you an emergency prescription. I have been in this situation myself and have used this method. (Info for future use) It is always best to attend a hearing as the Court maybe more sympathetic in your case. Medical emergencies can sometimes be used but normally you'd be expected to pull over and call for help.

 

 

Although the speed was too high to deal with at the road there are other options for the Court to consider, a drivers awareness course and so on, normally a disqualification is mandatory in cases of speed this high!

 

 

'The magistrates sentencing guidelines for driving in excess of 101 mph on a motorway or dual carriageway, provide guidance to magistrates that they should consider a period of disqualification from driving for a period of 7 – 56 days (in addition to the imposition of a fine, costs and victim impact surcharge) or to endorse with 6 penalty points.

 

As to how the magistrates sentence will depend not only on the speed, but also upon the surrounding factors such as the road and weather conditions, the location of the offence and generally driving conduct. The mitigation presented in these cases is also critical, as the magistrates will need to understand how the offence happened and most importantly, what the consequences of disqualification would have on the driver and those around him, which may include his or her employer, employees and dependant family members.'

If I have been of any help, please click on my star and leave a note to let me know, thank you.

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'The magistrates sentencing guidelines for driving in excess of 101 mph on a motorway or dual carriageway, provide guidance to magistrates that they should consider a period of disqualification from driving for a period of 7 – 56 days (in addition to the imposition of a fine, costs and victim impact surcharge) or to endorse with 6 penalty points.

 

Why is the guideline for 101 mph and above relevant, if the OP has been told he was recorded at 100 mph?.

 

https://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/offences/item/speeding/

Suggests (for 100mph on a motorway) a starting point of a band B fine, together with (4-6 points on licence OR 7-28 day disqualification).

 

The culpability / mitigation paragraph quoted remains applicable.

 

Could you ask the court if they would hear your case after your return from holiday (stressing you wish to appear in person to apologise), but that if they wish to hear the case on the date planned you will carry on as you have already set out?

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Its a guideline, not a rule. The judge could easily DQ the driver and implement a heavy fine for being 30 mph over the limit.

 

There are mitigating circumstances, but as already mentioned, the only hope now is to get a sympathetic judge,

Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

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Its a guideline, not a rule. The judge could easily DQ the driver and implement a heavy fine for being 30 mph over the limit.

 

There are mitigating circumstances, but as already mentioned, the only hope now is to get a sympathetic judge,

 

Agreed, it's a guideline. It sets out the starting point, and the culpability, exacerbating and mitigating factors that should be considered.

The aim isn't to give absolute uniformity across all court's (especially as the precise facts of each case differ), but to reduce variability for similar offences .......

 

Whilst there is some "sympathetic judge / bench" vs. "Hanging judge / bench" effect, the OP can get the result to tend towards more sympathetic by a well worded submission (ideally in person) stressing the lower culpability and mitigation aspects : not to excuse, but to mitigate.

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It's always best to go in person to court. Going on holiday and sending g a letter with random information sometimes doesn't go down to well.

 

It could look to a judge as if you might not care, you're putting excuses down and you prefer to go on holiday than treat a serious matter properly.

 

 

All that said, the content of the letter is good. But it needs to be rewritten so it sounds like a genuine apology rather than an excuse

Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

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Hi,

 

Thanks for everyone's replies, I sort of agree that it would be better for me to go and give my apology and receive my sentence in person, which number would I have to contact to ask if they would be happy changing the date to allow me to attend or if they would prefer to stick to the date and receive my posted response and guilty plea - I haver the hearing at Medway court, Shall i ring them to discuss?

 

What I find a little confusing is the yellow form that headed the bundle pack received, which sort off implies quite clearly at the top if you please guilty:

 

- there's no need to come to court

 

- you may get a 33% discount on your fine

 

Pleading online is the recommended option.

 

Unless I would have been a regular reader on CAG I would have taken this as the courts preferred course of action and if your quick with a guilty acknowledgement you will get a huge discount.

 

@mikeymack2002 - I would have agreed about going to the hospital, we have done this in the past, the reason I decided not to was the distance was the same to meet my wife as it would have been to a local London hospital plus I knew the route to meet her, also we have attended hospital's in the past and waited hours to see a doctor who would then give an emergency prescription - I do agree that it would have been better either way looking at the trouble I'm now in.

 

I was also hoping the guidelines for 101mph plus wouldn't apply given my recorded speed was a little lower, I hope they don't but understand if a judge want's to go that route.

 

I will rewrite the letter tonight and repost with correct spelling and grammar.

 

Thanks again for your comments.

 

Dave

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I have to ask and i am not making any kind of judgement

 

Why were you speeding on the M25??

 

It is well known for being riddled with speed cameras

 

Perhaps the fear that his son would end up in ITU again (from missing his steroid replacement therapy), that the OP mentioned in his post, was more pressing for his attention.

 

I accept that that is a reason, perhaps mitigation, and not an excuse, but the OP has already made it clear in his initial posting .....

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@Obiter - As BazzaS replied and I mentioned before,

I made two mistake's that evening,

one which I really haven't done for year's, maybe three times in 15 years in fact and forgot my lads medicine,

two was making a choice to drive over the speed limit based on the time,

the road being completely empty

and the weather being clear,

 

 

I know i'm opening myself up to a huge backlash from members and I would agree with you all,

I am not qualified to make judgements on the safe speed to travel,

I have in the past held a race license and taken advanced driving courses which should have probably made me think twice about what I did.

 

I can say that if there was more traffic and the conditions where bad, this wouldn't of happened,

instead of trying to find a hospital in London and waiting for an appointment,

 

 

I made a decision to meet my wife at junction 6 of the M25,

I was coming from the O2 at 11pm with clear roads and clear weather,

 

 

I hope I don't come across naive or stupid,

I knew I was speeding and was aware the motorway has a lot of cameras,

for that reason I believed I kept my speed under 90mph,

again to fast but I am aware that anything over that can lead to a ban.

 

I was caught by an overhead camera at junction 5 clackett lane,

I know these cameras are active and I am shocked at the reported speed,

 

 

friends and family suggested questioning the evidence, I disagree,

I knew I was speeding, the fact I thought I was defiantly below 90mph shows a disrespect for the law and road safety - if it was anyone else and I was reading their post I would probably think serves yourself right!

 

What ever type of judge I get and punishment received, I will be looking to attend a driver awareness course as soon as I return.

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hey I think you have a good case

 

IMHO you need to make them aware of

 

I have in the past held a race license and taken advanced driving courses which should have probably made me think twice about what I did.

 

I think this is to your advantage.

 

coupled with you childs condition/medication needs

 

I will not relate to specifics but...

 

I was involved in providing/managing medical issues at a large public concert in 2011

whereby for whatever reason we needed to attain urgent medical tablets that a patient

at our first aid point needed due to their condition.

 

it was not a marked car

it was an advanced trained driver making our way to the nearest hospital holding the requirement

we were flashed [old days on an mway]

 

the driver attended the court etc etc and was verbally reprimanded by the judge but nothing else happened.

 

hope this helps

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I know I'm gonna get a lot of sticks for saying this, but here it comes:

On an empty motorway with clear conditions is very hard to stick to 70mph, especially in modern vehicles capable of 130+ mph.

Unfortunately the speed limit will never be updated due to the money fines bring in.

Personally I think that it is more dangerous to travel at 70mph on clear motorways because drivers become easily distracted by boredom.

In some countries in Europe they have upped the speed limit on certain 3 lane motorways to 100mph and accident rates have gone down.

In some other countries they have higher speed limits at night, when there's no traffic.

A monitoring system exists on the m25 and in fact there's a variable speed limit on most of it controlled remotely to suit the traffic conditions.

I can't see a problem with setting the limit at 90 or 100 on an empty motorway.

As said, modern vehicles are much safer than those built when speed limits were imposed and roads are much better, so something should change.

Please note, this is my own opinion, not the law or regulation, so I don't intend to argue that the op didn't do anything wrong.

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"On an empty motorway with clear conditions is very hard to stick to 70mph, especially in modern vehicles capable of 130+ mph."

 

Why is it hard to stick to 70 mph?. It "is a limit, not a target."

With the "law, as is", if a driver can't stick to 70 mph, they must accept the risk of prosecution. If they are driving at spot on 70, but carelessly / dangerously : they still risk prosecution.

 

"As said, modern vehicles are much safer than those built when speed limits were imposed and roads are much better, so something should change."

The vehicles are safer, but that doesn't mean that the humans operating them behave any safer.

 

However, I agree that it isn't "speed kills", but "inappropriate speed kills".

That is why I am a fan of enforcement by humans, with the support of cameras.

Set a limit, but a human decides on prosecution once the limit is exceeded ; if the speed wasn't inappropriate for the conditions and the manner of driving, then a warning (or FPN) rather than an automatic prosecution?.

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Again thanks for taking the time to write replies.

 

I am working on putting a final draft together for tomorrow and calling on Monday, I would prefer to attend the court to be honest,

 

 

I am not sure about putting anything in the apology letter about my previous race license or the many advanced driver courses I have attended, I don't want it to look like I am suggesting or feel that I know better about what speeds are acceptable over the law.

 

@king12345 I see your point and to a degree took it upon myself to judge the conditions and travel at the speed I felt safe at, I am still shocked at the recorded speed! the problem you have is driver ability, as Im sure your aware drivers can get themselves into all sorts of problems on a clear road and the faster your going the more likely any mistake can turn into a major incident, I am sure the road barriers and safety precautions are designed and built around certain perimeters.

 

Also from experience on track, the faster the speed over 95/100mph the less responsive a car can be, if the law set a variable limit of 100mph with a 10% margin you would see cars pushed to their limit by inexperienced drivers which wouldn't be good, however if you were the judge on my case I would agree with you wholeheartedly :)

 

Dave

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If you had a crash at 100+ mph the survival rates are so much lower. If you crash at 70 the barrier designs keep you a little safer.

 

Driving faster on quieter motorways shows that you are indeed inexperienced as you need to be MORE aware as you have less time to react.

 

The slogan of slow down and save a life is more true now more than ever.

 

BTW my maximum speed in a 30 mph zone is 8mph if I am in the road. Never ever assume you can handle a spin out at over 100 on a quiet motorway because you don't stop any quicker as there is less to slow you down.

 

Ultimately speed kills always has always will.

 

As a former courier I used to drive more than 130k miles a year I did this for nearly 15 years and only ever had 1 crash and zero speeding tickets.

 

I hope you get the result in Court and If disqualified it's minimal, please consider your speed in the future as if convicted it will remain there for future cases if you are unlucky enough to be caught again. Please remember that although the offence is dealt with it will remain on your file many years from now....

If I have been of any help, please click on my star and leave a note to let me know, thank you.

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BTW my maximum speed in a 30 mph zone is 8mph if I am in the road.

...........

 

As a former courier I used to drive more than 130k miles a year I did this for nearly 15 years and only ever had 1 crash and zero speeding tickets.

 

8mph maximum in a 30 limit?

You must have been popular with other drivers..... That slow (without reason) can in itself cause danger.

 

Most of the 130k miles per year must have been on roads with a limit greater than 30mph, or you wouldn't have had time to cover that sort of mileage at 8mph .....

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For speeds in excess of 100 mph (or more than 30 miles above the relevant limit) the punishment starts at disqualification as opposed to penalty points.

 

See the magistrates courts sentencing guidelines.

For 70 mph limit, the guideline suggesting "starting point : disqualification" is for 101 mph and above.

100 mph [what the OP is accused of] is still (just!) in the lower band

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Could i just ask the OP how much if a problem it might be if they were to attend the hearing and travel to the holiday a day later?

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Again thanks for the feedback on my post.

 

@mikeymack2002

- I'm sure that was a typo error with your post,

driving a maximum speed of 8moh in a 30mph zone,

Although I am in no position to preach,

I would expect anyone doing would be charged with 'Inconsiderate driving' or 'driving without due care and attention'.

 

Speed in itself is not that dangerous, inappropriate speed is.

Always take into account the weather and road conditions.

Driving at 60mph, even though you are legally entitled to do so,

when there is ice on the road is dangerous and inappropriate,

as is driving at 40mph on a dual carriageway when the weather is fine.

 

In reply to your comment

"Driving faster on quieter motorways shows that you are indeed inexperienced as you need to be MORE aware as you have less time to react."

in general I would agree that the faster you go the less time you have to react,

I however was fully aware of the road conditions,

zero traffic risk I was taking,

I can assure you I do not take my family's safety lightly,

That goes for other road users safety as well,

 

you may think how would he remember the details about this offence,

I am not a daily speed breaker,

I would hope after nearly 30 years driving, including race, track and advance driving that I would be considered experienced

 

- I considered the vehicle, traffic, weather conditions when I took this chance,

I understand the fact that you never know what can happen

- I understood the risk, would I do it again? yes,

but not to the extent, if I had come into traffic I would of course slowed down.

 

With regards to the court date,

we fly out on the same day,

I am considering attending the court and trying to get back for the flight,

as you can imagine this is not a popular choice at home,

 

the whole point of my post was not to try and work my way out of this mess,

I admit I decided to break the law and knowingly did so,

I don't believe in excuses,

I did what I did and will accept and agree with the decision of the court.

 

CAG has given some great advice in the past and the reason for this post was simply to try

and convince the court I'm not a complete idiot,

someone who doesn't respect or abide by the laws,

 

having not been to a magistrates court before charged with a serious offence

I'm trying to ensure I present myself as.. well, myself.

 

Someone kindly mentioned including the details about my past advanced driver training and track experience,

I would have thought this a real No No,

 

I would think that would go against me,

someone with advanced driver training should know better

and does he think he should decide whatever speed he feels happy with

- this is not a racetrack sort of judge reply??

this is where I need the help.

 

Thanks so much

 

Dave

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You could write in via letter and ask for it to be handed to the judge on the day. If you genuinely are unable to make it to the court.

Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

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