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4/11/2006
UK: Illegal Speed Camera Fines Refunded
More than 1800 speed camera tickets illegally issued in Devon, UK will be refunded.

Mobile speed camera
More than 1800 speed camera fines issued on the A379 at Starcross in Devon, UK will be refunded within the next six to eight weeks. Between November 2002 and March 2005, mobile cameras generated fines worth £100,000 (US $174,000) at a location with signage found illegal in a successful challenge at Totnes Magistrates Court last October.

"The section of road where the speed camera van was situated is entirely rural," the Association of British Drivers explained. "On one side there is a field separated from a pavement by metal railings, on the other side there is undergrowth right up to the edge of the road. No driver seeing this road would expect the limit to be 30mph."

The road is a favorite route to the holiday destination of Dawlish. Those unfamiliar with the road often assumed either it was an unposted 60 MPH road, or a 40 MPH road. The 30 MPH sign was hidden by a bush. As one motorist put it, "Perhaps the suggestion is that one should always stop your vehicle and search the undergrowth for hidden signs -- because that would be safe wouldn't it?"

The court had also found the street lighting and road markings improper for the speed limit applied. Because of the points that were assigned four years ago to the licenses of drivers wrongly convicted, several have lost their jobs and paid thousands in increased insurance premiums.

Source: Motorists wait for fines refund (BBC News (UK), 4/11/2006)

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