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 Post subject: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 11:13 
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So I have been enjoying the dry on my bike over the past few days. It has been cold but dry, so for that I am thankful. On my travels I come across a dual carriageway that I haven't ridden down for some time. My spidey sense begain tingling, I largely ignored it. This is a nice straight road with no turnings, junctions or intersections of any kind, visibility is good and that particular stretch has to my knowledge no real history of accidents. Although that means it is exactly the sort of road the authorities like to stick cameras on. They wouldn't thought, right? That would be silly. It seems I was wrong. There were no camera signs up or traditional/legally required markings to indicate that there were cameras present but my first indication somethign was amiss was when I caught a 'camera on test sign, partially obscured by undergrowth' but could not for the life of me spot the camera. I then spotted another sign and this time clocked that it was resting against a post on top of which was a CCTV style cameras encased in a box, like something out of a comic book, with a tiny orange sign at the bottom, partially over grown, stating 'camera on test'. It looks like there were three in total. Thankfully they were forward facing, which may also be my saving grace (ahem, not that I was speeding, of course), and I was on two wheels. So what is the deal with cameras on test? I guess the very fact there were no traditional camera signs up means that any evidence they collect is inadmissable anyway?

It just makes my heart sink, in truth. I doubt anything will come of it as there were no secondary markings on the road or any prior warning of the cameras. I know people exceed the speed limit along there but if driving according to conditions, then they are in reality, I would have said, still driving safely. It is a fast stretch of road. I just annoys me that their mentality is that to merely exceed the limit by any amount is unsafe. I do not believe this is true. I wondered the other day how slavishly following a series of signs must make for terrible drivers. How stuck would they be if those signs were removed? How would they read the road?

Second I was sat at a set of lights in South London and caught 'green' in my periphery and went. It was late, I was tired and I think I set off when the crossing guard changerd from red to green rather than the lights. I did what I always do and as it was a cross roads checked left and right to make sure it was safe but the cars behind me stayed put. The thing is, there is a red light camera on that junctions so...

Do most red light cameras work? Or is it a lottery like speed scameras?
Also is there a legal requirement to have the crossing signal for pedestrians covered to sheild it from drivers? If so I will check this was done but I suspect not as I was behind the line.


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 12:51 
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Were you referring to this setup DrM?

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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 13:06 
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No, it is literally a CCTV camera in a box. Or it appears to be that. I was too busy trying to scrub off a bit of speed to grab me camera and take some detailed piccies :lol:

The ones on the A3 I am aware of and they are signed as, unfrortunately, the A3 is bloody littered with cameras. Interesting thread though Steve. I have often passed those cameras, daily in fact sometimes, and knew the ugly looking yellow couple were speed cameras (one forward and one rear facing) as there are obviously the lines, but never knew what the one to the left was. It must indeed be ANPR.

The ones I encountered were not dissimilar from the ANPR/Congestion Charge cameras in town but they were I suspect there to monitor speed as there were three of them in quite close succession. If they were ANPR then one would have done as they were all on the same stretch of road facing the same direction. Good pics of the A3 though.

Again the A3 is a road set artificially low. That stretch is 40 and fair enough you should be slowing down by then anyway as there is a roundabout/junction thing in a few yards but the rest of the 50 A3 can be good for motorway speeds or higher and at rush hour can be moving as low 20 mph or lower. It takes common sense and observation to nagivate safely, not a blanket limit of 50 as imposed in the late 90s. A lot of the time the traffic is moving at above 50 and then you get a dangerous concertina effect as cars slow for the cameras. In my opinion, it should be at least 60mph if not NSL and the cameras actually impede the natural flow of traffic. As someone who once travelled this stretch of road everyday at peak times I can say that it can be lethal when cars suddenly remember there is a camera there and slam on the anchors and start the brake light domino effect.


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 03:57 
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Have you a location for the Camera On Test situation ? if on test as far as i know they cannot legally prosecute unless you did a 'serious crime' eg. murder ...

With overgrown veg it must have been there a while and a Google check will help to give and indication of time period.
A call tot the local council / SCP / Police will provide more info.

With the Red light camera certainly some have been turned off but there is certainly a delay in their removal but I have no list of these. Again talk to the Council/ SCP / Police dept now dealing with it.
If you went on a red then yes you are likely to obtain a ticket.
A letter of complaint to Highways Agency (trunk route) / local Council roads dept (local roads) ... to inform them of your confusion should see them place those shields over the lights to prevent accidental actions.

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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 00:11 
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A24, just south of Horsham, Claire. The section that runs inbetween Southwater and Copsale until the road appears to split.

As for the redlight that one still puzzles me. If I was at fault, then lesson learned.


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 15:41 
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I wonder if it was one of those tax disc spotting cameras. It would not surprise me if they were being tested as permanent fixtures instead of having a couple of Police Officers sat there with a unit on a tri-pod for half the day. APNR - that's the bunny.


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 00:42 
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Maybe they were ANPR? Although there was three in succession. Two only about 50ft apart and the other maybe half a mile?


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 18:58 
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Location: Treacletown ( just north of M6 J3),A MILE OR TWO PAST BEDROCK
DoktorMandrake wrote:
Maybe they were ANPR? Although there was three in succession. Two only about 50ft apart and the other maybe half a mile?

Simple solution - FOI request

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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 02:43 
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How does one do that?


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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 01:04 
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You simply email the appropriate authority with a question.
Make sure that the question is a simple and closed one specifying precisely what you need to know.
You can ask as many questions as you like.
If you ask too much it might incur a charge, but they (have to), will let you know how much this cost prior to carrying out the work.

From various copies of FOI's that I have seen, and one's that I have asked, question number varies from 3 - about 8. Some questions will be detailed subsections of an initial question or surrounding issues.

Can you pin-point the area on Google streetmaps please ? I've had a bit of a look bit it takes ages !

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 Post subject: Re: Camera On Test
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 01:38 
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Location: Treacletown ( just north of M6 J3),A MILE OR TWO PAST BEDROCK
DoktorMandrake wrote:
How does one do that?


Few examples on SS - but you may have to dig .Perhaps someone legally might post up a template somewhere an make it a sticky or something similar so we can make them secure in knowledge that the authorities can't wriggle out on a technicality ..

Basicly - SENT TO ---
"Please service this FOI request .
Q1
Q2
ETC
Or blah /blah /blah

reply via e mail to ....................
I used this format to ask about local cameras after getting tosh back on an e mail request an got a sensible reply .

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lets bring sanity back to speed limits.
Drivers are like donkeys -they respond best to a carrot, not a stick .Road safety experts are like Asses - best kept covered up ,or sat on


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