Speeding is one of the most common motoring offences committed. The introduction of speed or “safety cameras” has dramatically increased the number of offences detected and prosecuted.
Most offences at the lower end of the scale result in the offer of a fixed penalty notice which, at the time of writing, incurs three penalty points and a fine of £60.
You may also be offered a Speed Awareness course which avoids penalty points and fines altogether. However, you are required to pay the cost of the course which is normally set just over the level of a ticket. If you are offered this option, it is worth considering as they reduce the impact of points on your insurance premium (for the next five years) and reduce the risk of totting up to 12 points in the next three years. You will only be offered one Speed Awareness course in a three year period – if the alleged speed is too high you may not be offered it at all.
If you are detected speeding by being seen by a police officer, that officer’s evidence is crucial to the case against you. To reduce the risk of prosecutions based on mistakes, the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has issued guidance which defines the circumstances when evidence from devices is reliable and when it is not. This guidance is just that, but it can be used to undermine the evidence which would otherwise be accepted as fact, it needs to be presented and applied to the circumstances of your case in court.
The successful prosecution of speeding offences is far from a foregone conclusion and the penalties and consequences that flow from them can be severe. Very high speeds (generally 30mph+ above the limit) will result in a disqualification for the one offence. In exceptional cases, the court has a power to order the forfeiture and disposal of the vehicle used in the offence.
For more information on speeding offences and how we can help you, please contact our Motoring, Crime and Regulatory Team on 01279 755777, or speak to Dan Hart, Solicitor in our Motoring, Crime and Regulatory Team.