Presumption of innocence with vehicle offences

Drivers or registered keepers of vehicles should not be presumed guilty after an alleged offence related to a vehicle. If they dispute the charges, they should not have to pay any money first and be forced to appeal in order to get their money back.

The person driving the vehicle is not necessarily the registered keeper or owner anyway, so if a vehicle is clamped or towed away, it is not right that the keeper should then have to pay a fee to be allowed their car back. This would remove any legitimate reason for clamping vehicles anyway, and vehicles should only ever be towed away if they are causing an obstruction that urgently needs unblocking.

Under this system, if a car is towed away, a fee can be requested at the time of retrieval, but payment at that time would not be compulsory. If the keeper refuses to pay, the case can then go to court and the driver of the car can be sued for the money, or the driver could pay at a later time. Compulsory payment first goes against the presumption of innocence. If the person driving is not the keeper, it should not be up to the keeper to pay up and get the money from the driver.

Vehicle offences (of any type) should relate to the driver at the time, not the keeper and there should be no presumption that it is the keeper that has committed an offence. The onus should be on the prosecutor to prove an offence had been committed and to prove who committed the offence.

Why is this idea important?

Drivers or registered keepers of vehicles should not be presumed guilty after an alleged offence related to a vehicle. If they dispute the charges, they should not have to pay any money first and be forced to appeal in order to get their money back.

The person driving the vehicle is not necessarily the registered keeper or owner anyway, so if a vehicle is clamped or towed away, it is not right that the keeper should then have to pay a fee to be allowed their car back. This would remove any legitimate reason for clamping vehicles anyway, and vehicles should only ever be towed away if they are causing an obstruction that urgently needs unblocking.

Under this system, if a car is towed away, a fee can be requested at the time of retrieval, but payment at that time would not be compulsory. If the keeper refuses to pay, the case can then go to court and the driver of the car can be sued for the money, or the driver could pay at a later time. Compulsory payment first goes against the presumption of innocence. If the person driving is not the keeper, it should not be up to the keeper to pay up and get the money from the driver.

Vehicle offences (of any type) should relate to the driver at the time, not the keeper and there should be no presumption that it is the keeper that has committed an offence. The onus should be on the prosecutor to prove an offence had been committed and to prove who committed the offence.

Change VED to insurance

Scrap VED on private cars. Introduce a basic third-party injury insurance cost based on car/risk profile.

Investigate a simil;ar approach to commercial vehicles (not so clear as I write this)

Why is this idea important?

Scrap VED on private cars. Introduce a basic third-party injury insurance cost based on car/risk profile.

Investigate a simil;ar approach to commercial vehicles (not so clear as I write this)

Reduce the requirements for micro-vehicles

Why do people put up with never-ending traffic jams, lack of parking, inadequate road systems and general bad management just to use their cars?  Simple.  They don't have any choice because public transport is such a joke.

Now imagine if somebody were to bring the Sinclair C5 to market now, but fitted with a small engine in place of the electric motor.  You'd have a vehicle which could travel todays longer commutes, using cycle paths instead of roads, at sensible speed, and be able to park in the tiniest spaces.  And it would be economical – 250mpg?  Sounds good, no?

What about an even tinier machine, which was actually small enough to fold up and stick under your desk in the office.  Something like a kids scooter with a motor?  Or a powered pushbike which can fold.  Even better?  It's easily done.

But if you did produce such a machine, you'd never be able to use it on the roads.

Why?  Red tape.  It's classed as a motorbike.  At best, as a moped.

So, you need to be over 16 to use it.  You'd need tax, insurance, a driving license, probably a CBT bike test, an MOT, and a helmet.  In London, you'd probably also have to pay a congestion charge, even though you're producing far less emissions than the smug greeny in the Prius.

Which seems to be, frankly, ridiculous.

I suggest that we should permit such micro-vehicles to be treated as pushbikes.

You'd need limits on power output, engine size, maximum weight, design speed, etc. 
But such restrictions already exist for "electrically powered bicycles" and are nothing new.

Why not treat micro vehicles, with tiny/limited petrol/diesel engines and about the same power output as a bicycle in the same way?

 

This isn't a new idea, by the way.

Anybody remember the Cycle Master from the 50s?  Brilliant idea, British invention, perfect for adapting to a modern mountain bike – killed by short sighted bureaucrats.

Come on Nick, give us a real, genuine chance to get out of our cars. 
Not just a lot of glib waffle telling us to use buses that aren't there, or trains that only run when they want to, or electric bikes that cost £2000 and run out of electricity half-way home.

Why is this idea important?

Why do people put up with never-ending traffic jams, lack of parking, inadequate road systems and general bad management just to use their cars?  Simple.  They don't have any choice because public transport is such a joke.

Now imagine if somebody were to bring the Sinclair C5 to market now, but fitted with a small engine in place of the electric motor.  You'd have a vehicle which could travel todays longer commutes, using cycle paths instead of roads, at sensible speed, and be able to park in the tiniest spaces.  And it would be economical – 250mpg?  Sounds good, no?

What about an even tinier machine, which was actually small enough to fold up and stick under your desk in the office.  Something like a kids scooter with a motor?  Or a powered pushbike which can fold.  Even better?  It's easily done.

But if you did produce such a machine, you'd never be able to use it on the roads.

Why?  Red tape.  It's classed as a motorbike.  At best, as a moped.

So, you need to be over 16 to use it.  You'd need tax, insurance, a driving license, probably a CBT bike test, an MOT, and a helmet.  In London, you'd probably also have to pay a congestion charge, even though you're producing far less emissions than the smug greeny in the Prius.

Which seems to be, frankly, ridiculous.

I suggest that we should permit such micro-vehicles to be treated as pushbikes.

You'd need limits on power output, engine size, maximum weight, design speed, etc. 
But such restrictions already exist for "electrically powered bicycles" and are nothing new.

Why not treat micro vehicles, with tiny/limited petrol/diesel engines and about the same power output as a bicycle in the same way?

 

This isn't a new idea, by the way.

Anybody remember the Cycle Master from the 50s?  Brilliant idea, British invention, perfect for adapting to a modern mountain bike – killed by short sighted bureaucrats.

Come on Nick, give us a real, genuine chance to get out of our cars. 
Not just a lot of glib waffle telling us to use buses that aren't there, or trains that only run when they want to, or electric bikes that cost £2000 and run out of electricity half-way home.

Make life easier for motor vechcles AND save money

Get rid of:

  • Speed bumps – high cost, but most drivers pass over them without problem – and they can cause noise and pollution;
  • Raised junctions / speed cushions – make no practical difference to anyone, road user or pedestriains, but must cost a fortune ( see this link for what these things are: http://www.redbridge.gov.uk/cms/parking_rubbish_and_streets/general_street_information/road_and_traffic_safety/traffic_calming_measures.aspx )
  • The sea of traffic signs and street furniture;
  • Parking regulations, where parking wouldn't disturb anyone;
  • MOTs every year – two yearly works fine in other European countries;
  • Car tax discs, get the money from petrol tax, on a tax neutral basis- save on the administration;
  • Traffic lights at minor junctions – use white paint for a mini roundabout – cheaper and traffic flows more efficiently. How many times have we all sat at red, with no other traffic to be seen?
  • Red traffic lights outside of the rush hour, on less busy roads – have them flash amber, signalling proceed with caution. Again works well elsewhere in the world, why not here? How many times have we all sat at red, with no other traffic to be seen?

Why is this idea important?

Get rid of:

  • Speed bumps – high cost, but most drivers pass over them without problem – and they can cause noise and pollution;
  • Raised junctions / speed cushions – make no practical difference to anyone, road user or pedestriains, but must cost a fortune ( see this link for what these things are: http://www.redbridge.gov.uk/cms/parking_rubbish_and_streets/general_street_information/road_and_traffic_safety/traffic_calming_measures.aspx )
  • The sea of traffic signs and street furniture;
  • Parking regulations, where parking wouldn't disturb anyone;
  • MOTs every year – two yearly works fine in other European countries;
  • Car tax discs, get the money from petrol tax, on a tax neutral basis- save on the administration;
  • Traffic lights at minor junctions – use white paint for a mini roundabout – cheaper and traffic flows more efficiently. How many times have we all sat at red, with no other traffic to be seen?
  • Red traffic lights outside of the rush hour, on less busy roads – have them flash amber, signalling proceed with caution. Again works well elsewhere in the world, why not here? How many times have we all sat at red, with no other traffic to be seen?

Remove reversing alarms from vehicles

The current requirement to have all vehicles larger than a car sound a shrill alarm when reversing is unnecessary.

It is the driver's responsibility to make sure it is safe to proceed at all times. The current status quo shifts this and is used to intimidate visually impaired and other people out of the driver's way. If the driver cannot see it is clear he or she should enlist the help of a colleague and/or use side mirrors and proceed with more caution.

If nothing else at least the volume could be reduced. If a vehicle is in danger of hitting someone, they must be reasonably close. It cannot be necessary to have the alarms heard 500m away. And a person who is severely visually and hearing impaired will be in danger from traffic no matter what excessive noise is made.

Why is this idea important?

The current requirement to have all vehicles larger than a car sound a shrill alarm when reversing is unnecessary.

It is the driver's responsibility to make sure it is safe to proceed at all times. The current status quo shifts this and is used to intimidate visually impaired and other people out of the driver's way. If the driver cannot see it is clear he or she should enlist the help of a colleague and/or use side mirrors and proceed with more caution.

If nothing else at least the volume could be reduced. If a vehicle is in danger of hitting someone, they must be reasonably close. It cannot be necessary to have the alarms heard 500m away. And a person who is severely visually and hearing impaired will be in danger from traffic no matter what excessive noise is made.

Display of Tax disc in vehicles.

It seems unimportant, but in this modern age of ANPR police registration plate checking systems and automatic fines for not taxing your car it seems really silly that it's still illegal for someone to "not properly display a tax disc in their vehicle".

Come one Britain, as you change the systems and the way things work moves along with the times please change the laws that refer to those systems.

I for one don't display my Tax disc, it fell off and I'd prefer not to have a big ugly sticker on my windscreen, but the DVLA/Police information system will tell you that i have tax for my car and MOT and insurance, and if i didn't I would get an automatic fine in the post.

So why is that I'm still supposed to display the archaic reciept in my windscreen?

Why is this idea important?

It seems unimportant, but in this modern age of ANPR police registration plate checking systems and automatic fines for not taxing your car it seems really silly that it's still illegal for someone to "not properly display a tax disc in their vehicle".

Come one Britain, as you change the systems and the way things work moves along with the times please change the laws that refer to those systems.

I for one don't display my Tax disc, it fell off and I'd prefer not to have a big ugly sticker on my windscreen, but the DVLA/Police information system will tell you that i have tax for my car and MOT and insurance, and if i didn't I would get an automatic fine in the post.

So why is that I'm still supposed to display the archaic reciept in my windscreen?

Classic/Historic Cars & VED

The zero rate of VED for cars over 25 years was introduced by the last Conservative Government.  

It was then quietly changed to a fixed date in Gordon Brown's first budget.

 

It should now revert back to being a rolling date for vehicles over 25 years.

Why is this idea important?

The zero rate of VED for cars over 25 years was introduced by the last Conservative Government.  

It was then quietly changed to a fixed date in Gordon Brown's first budget.

 

It should now revert back to being a rolling date for vehicles over 25 years.

Repeal the law (Police Reform 2002) which permits the police to seize your vehicle (under section 59) without any evidence of wrongdoing and without any recourse to the courts

We have moved closer again to a police state. Very few of the motoring public will be aware that the police are now judge, jury and executioner and can seize your vehicle for unproven ‘inconsiderate driving’ without even having to present evidence and without any prior discussion with yourself.

The first you will know of this is when you get a knock on the door and the notice of ‘offence’ is issued. You are not even asked for your version and the ‘offence’ will not be explained to you so that you are not even made aware of the ‘wrongdoing’. You cannot dispute the offence and you cannot go to court for a review of evidence. Your vehicle is simply seized and sold or crushed

This legislation can be used by unscrupulous and biased police (and yes there are some – they are drawn from the same cesspool of humanity as the rest of us mortals) and even young and naive police in the mistaken belief that they are sufficiently mature and competent to apply this law and of course in the self serving delight of their own misconstrued  high ideals (honed by no years of experience) are providing a well needed ‘service’ to society .

If it is to be applied without any recourse to the courts and without the presentation of evidence and the opportunity to defend yourself then this law needs to be applied with a great deal of maturity, disgression, common sense and life experience. However it is being used (in accordance with the legislation) by Police Community Service officers as young as 18! Do they have the wisdom of years? Are they experienced even in police matters? How can they be – it takes time to achieve experience and associated life wisdom and understanding.  

Without the usual checks and balances this law is open to abuse and will bring the police force into disrepute and will alienate the ordinary law abiding citizens. In my opinion it was designed to catch the boy racers we have all witnessed. But like all laws which are well intended, without the benefit of  checks and balances this legislation can be used for other purposes eg personal reasons, settling scores related to other issues, misunderstanding of situations when only one side is heard (you will not be asked for your version)

The motorist has already been criminalised just for owning a car – it’s now gone one stage further whereby your car may be seized on the word of an unknown witness who may be carrying a grudge on an unrelated issue.  It permits  the ordinary law abiding citizen to be punished for no reason. This is not justice – it’s a police state and that is outrageous.

This country was once renowned for its democracy, justice and fair play – presumed innocent until proven guilty.  The police alone can now decide you are guilty! And no recourse to the courts.

This law does not fit into the democratic ideals on which this country was built and must be repealed before further damage is done to the innocent motorists being punished. Sadly, the police cannot be depended upon to use such legislation responsibly when It can be applied even by a young (18?) Police Community Service Officer (PCSO) with no experience of life and certainly no understanding of the police role in wider society. The police are here to ‘serve’ the needs of the public and not to pursue relentlessly law abiding and innocent motorists. If there is guilt (and in cases there may be) let it be proven in court.

God help us all with this legislation and the current batch of  indiscriminate. immature, youthful  jobsworth police happy to pursue a motorist on a perceived trivia but equally ready to avoid any element of danger to themselves by pursuing  rapists, yobs and violent criminals take over our streets.

Repeal this ‘unlawful’ legislation and bring back the common sense bobby of yesteryear that we can all respect     

Why is this idea important?

We have moved closer again to a police state. Very few of the motoring public will be aware that the police are now judge, jury and executioner and can seize your vehicle for unproven ‘inconsiderate driving’ without even having to present evidence and without any prior discussion with yourself.

The first you will know of this is when you get a knock on the door and the notice of ‘offence’ is issued. You are not even asked for your version and the ‘offence’ will not be explained to you so that you are not even made aware of the ‘wrongdoing’. You cannot dispute the offence and you cannot go to court for a review of evidence. Your vehicle is simply seized and sold or crushed

This legislation can be used by unscrupulous and biased police (and yes there are some – they are drawn from the same cesspool of humanity as the rest of us mortals) and even young and naive police in the mistaken belief that they are sufficiently mature and competent to apply this law and of course in the self serving delight of their own misconstrued  high ideals (honed by no years of experience) are providing a well needed ‘service’ to society .

If it is to be applied without any recourse to the courts and without the presentation of evidence and the opportunity to defend yourself then this law needs to be applied with a great deal of maturity, disgression, common sense and life experience. However it is being used (in accordance with the legislation) by Police Community Service officers as young as 18! Do they have the wisdom of years? Are they experienced even in police matters? How can they be – it takes time to achieve experience and associated life wisdom and understanding.  

Without the usual checks and balances this law is open to abuse and will bring the police force into disrepute and will alienate the ordinary law abiding citizens. In my opinion it was designed to catch the boy racers we have all witnessed. But like all laws which are well intended, without the benefit of  checks and balances this legislation can be used for other purposes eg personal reasons, settling scores related to other issues, misunderstanding of situations when only one side is heard (you will not be asked for your version)

The motorist has already been criminalised just for owning a car – it’s now gone one stage further whereby your car may be seized on the word of an unknown witness who may be carrying a grudge on an unrelated issue.  It permits  the ordinary law abiding citizen to be punished for no reason. This is not justice – it’s a police state and that is outrageous.

This country was once renowned for its democracy, justice and fair play – presumed innocent until proven guilty.  The police alone can now decide you are guilty! And no recourse to the courts.

This law does not fit into the democratic ideals on which this country was built and must be repealed before further damage is done to the innocent motorists being punished. Sadly, the police cannot be depended upon to use such legislation responsibly when It can be applied even by a young (18?) Police Community Service Officer (PCSO) with no experience of life and certainly no understanding of the police role in wider society. The police are here to ‘serve’ the needs of the public and not to pursue relentlessly law abiding and innocent motorists. If there is guilt (and in cases there may be) let it be proven in court.

God help us all with this legislation and the current batch of  indiscriminate. immature, youthful  jobsworth police happy to pursue a motorist on a perceived trivia but equally ready to avoid any element of danger to themselves by pursuing  rapists, yobs and violent criminals take over our streets.

Repeal this ‘unlawful’ legislation and bring back the common sense bobby of yesteryear that we can all respect     

Repeal the law permitting police to seize your vehicle without evidence and without court intervention

At the present time anyone can get a knock on the door and find themselves charged with 'inconsiderate driving' (whatever that is) based on 'a witnesses report'  and can have their vehicle seized without any opportunity to defend yourself and without knowing your accuser and without the attending officer even listening to anything you might want to say. The authority to do this even extends to the young (18?) Community Support Officers who have no maturity, no experience of life and no integrity.

This system as it stands is open to abuse and bias and yes some police are biased -they are human with all the human failings. 

In a country once renowned for its fair play and justice to be told you will have your vehicle seized by an immature (boy) police at the door and you may not seek redress in court where your accuser must give evidence and you may respond is quite outrageous.

This law is a gross violation of 'innocent until provn guilty'. 

Why is this idea important?

At the present time anyone can get a knock on the door and find themselves charged with 'inconsiderate driving' (whatever that is) based on 'a witnesses report'  and can have their vehicle seized without any opportunity to defend yourself and without knowing your accuser and without the attending officer even listening to anything you might want to say. The authority to do this even extends to the young (18?) Community Support Officers who have no maturity, no experience of life and no integrity.

This system as it stands is open to abuse and bias and yes some police are biased -they are human with all the human failings. 

In a country once renowned for its fair play and justice to be told you will have your vehicle seized by an immature (boy) police at the door and you may not seek redress in court where your accuser must give evidence and you may respond is quite outrageous.

This law is a gross violation of 'innocent until provn guilty'. 

Historic Vehicle Tax needs reviewing!

I have an old VW Campervan which was registered on the 1st March 1973. The van is in perfect condition and certainly better condition than some of the newer cars on the road. Yet the deadline for qualifying for historic vehicle tax is on the 1st January 1973, which my van doesn't qualify as it is two months out!

Why is this idea important?

I have an old VW Campervan which was registered on the 1st March 1973. The van is in perfect condition and certainly better condition than some of the newer cars on the road. Yet the deadline for qualifying for historic vehicle tax is on the 1st January 1973, which my van doesn't qualify as it is two months out!