As you may know, a good number of years ago, the UK introduced variable speed limits on certain stretches of its motorways. The bright spark behind this idea did so, because they thought it would help ease congestion on parts of the road system that were always backed up with traffic jams.
If this idea has worked, I really couldn’t comment on, but what I will say is not a day goes by without some hold-up on the UK motorways for one reason or another. I will also say that I think a lot of commuters in and around some of the busiest cities in the UK will tell you their journey to work is no quicker now than it was before theses digital signs were installed.
However, I digress. I was very interested to learn courtesy of Sky News today that lawyers are seeking to have thousands of speeding fines over-turned, and this, apparently stretches back some years. Do you want to know the reason for this?
Well, it turns out these signs were using the wrong font! Not only that, they have been considered to be too tall, and too narrow thereby not complying with UK traffic regulations, (incidentally that snippet of information came from the Crown Prosecution Service).
What puzzles me is this: Were the signs so bad it was possible for someone to mistake the number 50 for the number 60? In which case, they would have been caught on camera and duly fined. It’s been a long time since I was travelling on the roads in the UK, and when I did, I used the motorways regularly.
Not only did I never have a speeding fine (because I didn’t speed), I never really thought there was any trouble with reading the digital speed limits. The other thing that puzzles me is why it has taken so long for this to become public knowledge? Surely if you believe you’ve been fined for speeding and you weren’t you would make your concerns known?
After all, a fine in the UK could mean points on your licence, and I’ll bet some people were even suspended from driving as a result. However, I suggest everyone watch this space with regards to what might happen over the coming weeks or months. Now the headline is out, I can see that we’ll not only have “miss-sold PPI” ads on our televisions, but we’ll also see “were you incorrectly fined for speeding” “No win, no fee”!
Author: Julie Coburn