Fleet News

Telematics beats traffic convictions

HI-TECH vehicle tracking systems are being used to overturn fines based on faulty evidence from speed cameras and over-zealous traffic wardens.

As the Government bids to crackdown on driving offences with a raft of new measures, the risk of drivers receiving points and even driving bans is increasing.

But according to vehicle management systems provider Minorplanet, some of these convictions are unwarranted or even false.

Andrew Tilman, operations director at Minorplanet, said: 'Some of our clients have shown conclusively that their driver was doing the correct speed when a Gatso has recorded a far greater speed.

'Mostly it is due to a faulty setting on the camera - but a cancellation of the fine is normally as a direct result of a telematics report, used as proof.'

Latest Government figures have revealed more than 11,000 drivers lost their licences last year for speeding.

The total number caught speeding rocketed 150% to more than 500,000 between 1995 and 1999.

Faulty equipment is not only to blame, as human 'error' can also play a significant part in putting points on drivers' licences.

Tilman said: 'Over-zealous traffic wardens with demanding targets to meet will pounce on an unsuspecting individual just seconds after the ticket expires even though the vehicle owner is just seconds away themselves.'

In one reported case, he said, a driver whose car had been fitted with the Minorplanet system had arrived at a parking bay in London at exactly 08:59am.

He purchased a ticket for the maximum waiting time of 30 minutes. On his return some 20 minutes later he had been given a ticket for contravening the 9am no parking rule.

Tilman added: 'Companies are beginning to see telematics as more than just a sophisticated tracking system, but as another weapon against the increasing costs of keeping their fleets on the road.'

FleetNewsNet recently revealed an increasing number of drivers are being wrongly accused of speeding due to errors in speed cameras and police records.

Research by the AA with customers revealed several had obtained photographic evidence of their speeding conviction and found they were below the legal limit.

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