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Index : Towing and Towcars : Warnings for drivers just over Speed Limit - by UKCampsite.co.uk

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Warnings for drivers just over Speed Limit

Motorists who exceed the speed limit by only a few miles per hour could find themselves in trouble after police announced a crackdown on speeders.

For years, authorities have allowed a small amount of leeway for drivers who might unwittingly exceed the limit by a small amount, but this could be set to change under the new approach.

Traditionally, police have allowed drivers a margin of error of 10 per cent plus 2mph of the speed limit, meaning that in a 50mph zone drivers could get away with 57mph before getting fined.

However, some police forces around the UK are now set to do away with the margin for error, meaning that more drivers could end up on the receiving end of fines and penalty points.


Scottish police have already announced they’re due to abandon the discretionary allowance and will now issue any driver exceeding the limit by even 1mph with a warning. If the driver is caught exceeding the limit again, they will received a £100 on-the-spot fine and have three points put on their licence, with tougher penalties for drivers exceeding it by a larger amount.

It’s thought that in England and Wales other forces could follow suit with this tougher approach.

Road safety campaigners are concerned that this will lead to many drivers spending more time looking at the speedo rather than the road ahead. The AA's Edmund King has commented saying

"We need drivers to concentrate on what is on the road in front of them, not always looking at the speedo. “If a driver strays over the limit by 2mph, they shouldn’t be, but it’s better they do that and stay focused on what is going on around them."

We at the UKCampsite.co.uk are fully supportive of any reasonable measures made to reinforce road safety, but agree with some of the concerns raised. It's particularly worrying for those with older cars which have inconsistencies when it comes to speed accuracy, and of course those who are towing, who need to concentrate even more on the road rather than the speedometer.

  Comments on this article from our visitors

    Message posted by jonk on 05/08/2015 12:59:37Report Post Report this
I agree with the bit about paying more attention to the speedo than the road. Even the cruise control doesn't hold speed that steady especially as you come over the brow of a hill which the cruise has been applying more power. Isn't still the case that the speedo is only required to be better than 10% accurate? What about sat-nav speed indications how accurate are they to use as a calibration reference for your speedo? Or is it just another way of raising extra cash from the motorist.
 Reply

    Message posted by jonk on 05/08/2015 13:12:34Report Post Report this
Just had a look to clarify the speedometer accuracy: http://www.thecarexpert.co.uk/how-accurate-is-a-car-speedometer/
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    Message posted by DaiAnotherDai on 05/08/2015 13:35:53Report Post Report this
Well I hope the cable driven speedo in my 40+ year old VW Camper is spot on then or I'll be ringing up VW...
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    Message posted by ST1100 on 05/08/2015 13:50:06Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by jonk on 05/8/2015I agree with the bit about paying more attention to the speedo than the road. Even the cruise control doesn't hold speed that steady especially as you come over the brow of a hill which the cruise has been applying more power.
Isn't still the case that the speedo is only required to be better than 10% accurate? What about sat-nav speed indications how accurate are they to use as a calibration reference for your speedo? Or is it just another way of raising extra cash from the motorist.
The speedo can be up to 10% inaccurate BUT only one way. It is allowed to tell you that you are going faster than the actual speed BUT NOT tell you that you are going slower then the actual speed. This means that anyone speeding, their speedo could be showing quite a bit over the limit. I have had a vehicle that did have an accurate speed fitted but it had an RS calibrated sticker on it and was a Honda ST1100 motorcycle.
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    Message posted by Bob61 on 05/08/2015 14:41:38Report Post Report this
Most speedometers read up to 10% higher than the vehicle is actually travelling. As suggested, they are not allowed to read lower so this margin is set by the manufacturers. This means that if your speedo is reading 55 mph you are probably only doing 50 mph. Your speedo would have to be reading over 56 mph for you to be stopped and warned that you were doing 51 mph in a 50 limit. I think that reading would be abundantly clear when glancing at your speedo without having to be glued to it. Since you can't count on the speedo being exactly 10% higher the only safe bet is to keep that needle at the speed limit even if it means you are actually going a few MPH slower.
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    Message posted by spikeymatt on 05/08/2015 14:54:13Report Post Report this
who says that the police speed check reading will be accurate 10% at low speeds 5% at higher speeds would be a sensible compromise
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    Message posted by ST1100 on 05/08/2015 15:31:50Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by spikeymatt on 05/8/2015who says that the police speed check reading will be accurate 10% at low speeds 5% at higher speeds would be a sensible compromise

The police speed equipment are checked and calibrated on a regular basis and if you are "caught" you have the option to have it rechecked and the evidence of the accuracy going to court. The RS Calibration Sticker on my motorbike had a certification number on it which could, if needed, be used to check the records as to when it was last checked and the calibration records for it.
 Reply

    Message posted by Skoda Bob on 05/08/2015 19:11:40Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by Bob61 on 05/8/2015
Most speedometers read up to 10% higher than the vehicle is actually travelling. As suggested, they are not allowed to read lower so this margin is set by the manufacturers. This means that if your speedo is reading 55 mph you are probably only doing 50 mph. Your speedo would have to be reading over 56 mph for you to be stopped and warned that you were doing 51 mph in a 50 limit. I think that reading would be abundantly clear when glancing at your speedo without having to be glued to it. Since you can't count on the speedo being exactly 10% higher the only safe bet is to keep that needle at the speed limit even if it means you are actually going a few MPH slower.
Haven help Vauxhall owners, their speedos are miles out, you have to drive at 35 to be doing 30 in them
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    Message posted by albee on 05/08/2015 20:24:22Report Post Report this
Hi, bet there wont be a policeman using common sense involved, just be a tweek of the old cash cow camera and sit back and take the cash. around where I live tickets are issued at 33mph already so exceed 32mph in a 30 zone and its open you,re wallet.
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    Message posted by Hairywol on 05/08/2015 22:45:04Report Post Report this
I think this could backfire. Many drivers who are booked for speeding generally take it on the chin, because the reported speed is usually a bit less than they thought they were doing and because the speed is usually well over the legal limit. Drivers who are done for doing, say, 72 on a motorway or 31 in a built-up area will feel very hard done by indeed, and will remember this in the future when the Police may need a favour or some co-operation. Of course insurance companies, especially the atrocious Admiral, will have yet another excuse to hike one's premium. Caravanners should be safe since our limits are well below what speed cameras will flash. Think I'll just keep mine attached all the time.
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    Message posted by Nosaj on 06/08/2015 09:45:48Report Post Report this
I really hope it does backfire this is just revenue generation. Whatever happenned to common sense.

Dont get me wrong if you speed then you deserve all you get but if they start fining people for being 0.5mph over the speed limit, then this will just lead to severe ill feeling, increased accidents and increased litigation. Driving standards are dire as it is. Now you will have people concentrating on keeping the needle bang on the limit (you couldn't possibly factor in your own margin of error I mean if it's 70 you have to drive at that speed don't you, you couldn't possibly drive at 66-68 in a 70) whilst speaking on mobile phones, eating breakfast, applying make up, shaving and fiddling with the sat nav, stereo etc all at the same time. 

Still it keeps the money go round going at the expense of the proles and that can only be a good thing....?
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    Message posted by Motobiman on 06/08/2015 10:30:37Report Post Report this
Just tax collection by another name. It's what the police do best these days. If everyone pleaded not guilty and totally clogged up the courts system the politicians would go back into their feather bedded cages and leave the rest of us alone. Time the Senior coppers took more notice of the fact that they police by consent.
 Reply

    Message posted by DaveS1 on 06/08/2015 13:29:50Report Post Report this
Holier than thou maybe but speed limits are just that -- limits. Exceeding them is a crime, even by a little! Is it any less of a crime only to shoplift a little or throw a brick through a little window? Perhaps we could just steal a little bit of cash in an armed robbery. Daves1
 Reply

    Message posted by ST1100 on 06/08/2015 14:02:28Report Post Report this
For myself I follow the advice I was given on a few assessed motorcycle rides by local Police and ex Police riders. For the 20,30, 40 and 50mph limits never exceed them, they are there for a reason. On the NSL (No Speed Limit) ... sorry meant National Speed Limit, always stay within the safe speed for your abilities, your vehicles abilities, the road and weather conditions and the other vehicles around you. The most I have done on a 60mph road was around 80mph on my bike but that was when followed by a fully marked up Police Bike connected by radio telling you ... nice position, nice overtake.
 Reply

    Message posted by spikeymatt on 06/08/2015 23:56:01Report Post Report this
could it be it is easier for the police to get the cash coming in at 31 41 61   71 than investigating a burglary even on even numbered doors.Someone mentioned commonsense afraid that went a long time ago
 Reply

    Message posted by kenles on 07/08/2015 10:29:47Report Post Report this
What a good thing it will make are roads safer and make heavy goods slow down 👇
 Reply

    Message posted by mummyintent on 07/08/2015 11:24:04Report Post Report this
we always set our cruise control/speed limiter to the speed limit plus 10% minus 2mph, sorry to anyone on the motorway stuck behind us at 75mph! but we don't sit in the outside lanes, always move straight back to the slower lanes once completed the overtake!
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    Message posted by SGThomas on 07/08/2015 16:11:41Report Post Report this
Speeding fines are just a voluntary tax. It is very easy not to be required to pay it. A speed limit is just that - a limit. It is not the compulsory speed at which to travel. If you are adult enough to drive, you have read the Highway Code.
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    Message posted by kenles on 07/08/2015 18:43:26Report Post Report this
How many of you have or had points on your Driving Licence It lookes like most of you ???
 Reply

    Message posted by Skoda Bob on 07/08/2015 18:54:38Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by kenles on 07/8/2015
What a good thing it will make are roads safer and make heavy goods slow down 👇
They are electronically limited depending on type, so if they slowed them any further they would stop
 Reply

    Message posted by Motobiman on 08/08/2015 07:31:03Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by kenles on 07/8/2015
How many of you have or had points on your Driving Licence It lookes like most of you ???
Nope. Driving for 51 years, had two minor speeding tickets on a motorbike back in the early sixties, fined if I remember right £8 and £10 pounds. no points then and red licences, still got it.
 Reply

    Message posted by SGThomas on 08/08/2015 08:29:33Report Post Report this
I was teaching class 1 police motorcycle riding until year or two ago. It is amazing how quickly you have forgotten
 Reply

    Message posted by Baileyjake on 08/08/2015 23:16:10Report Post Report this
If you exceed the speed limit whilst overtaking but return back to the limit after your manoeuvre that's ok......I believe that's the institute if advanced motorists view. Does the same apply whilst towing a caravan? If you speed op to 65 to pass a truck doing 56mph. It means you pass it quicker.and can pull back in front quicker......or is it better to pass at bang on 60. And take a mile to do it? It's a question I have pondered.
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    Message posted by saxo1 on 09/08/2015 14:14:13Report Post Report this
It may be the IAM members view but it is definately not legal! saxo1
 Reply

    Message posted by Hacksaw Bob on 09/08/2015 16:20:00Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by saxo1 on 09/8/2015
It may be the IAM members view but it is definately not legal! saxo1
...and rather pointless if the result is to get just a few seconds ahead of the overtaken vehicle.
 Reply

    Message posted by WOBBLE on 09/08/2015 17:30:37Report Post Report this
this is nothing new several police forces have had zero tolerance on speed limits for quite a while, its just a case of when and where they enforce it
 Reply

    Message posted by lissabuff on 09/08/2015 18:10:06Report Post Report this
at the tail end end of their shift to boost the "i got one more" rate
 Reply

    Message posted by Bob61 on 09/08/2015 22:18:00Report Post Report this
They use unmarked cars in my area...like taking candy off a baby I sometimes wonder, when I am travelling at 70 mph on motorways and dual carriageways and all the other traffic is zooming past me, whether my speedo is faulty. Very few people seem to obey the speed limits.
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    Message posted by freeatlast on 09/08/2015 22:31:07Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by spikeymatt on 06/8/2015
could it be it is easier for the police to get the cash coming in at 31 41 61   71 than investigating a burglary even on even numbered doors.Someone mentioned commonsense afraid that went a long time ago
Surely the police do not get the money from speeding fines, the money goes straight into a government bank account.
 Reply

    Message posted by Baileyjake on 09/08/2015 22:32:20Report Post Report this
I often wonder why when I am maintaining 50 in roadworks with average speed cameras why so many trucks overtake me and also cars. However if speedos are calibrated to read 10% under, which I recall my scenic did when compared to my sat nav speed, then an indicated 50 is actually 45 and 80 only 72.
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    Message posted by freeatlast on 10/08/2015 10:05:58Report Post Report this
On a major roadworks near us, they were catching over 400 drivers a month with the average speed cameras. As I was told when I learned to drive, assume all other road users are idiots, an assumption that is still clearly valid today. PS Don't assume the sat nav speed is totally accurate either, especially on hills.
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    Message posted by Ray Clayton on 14/08/2015 15:25:46Report Post Report this
Quote: Originally posted by Baileyjake on 09/8/2015
I often wonder why when I am maintaining 50 in roadworks with average speed cameras why so many trucks overtake me and also cars. However if speedos are calibrated to read 10% under, which I recall my scenic did when compared to my sat nav speed, then an indicated 50 is actually 45 and 80 only 72.
Thats true but on my discovery with off road tyres on it, i have lost the 10% so 30 is 30, 50 is 50 and 70 is 70 It runs spot on. so i am carefull all the time when i am driving it.
 Reply


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This article has the following linked sections

Driving Licence Changes from 8th June 2015
The tax disc has just gone paperless and now your driving licence is going to follow suit. Here’s some important info that all drivers need to know about what’s going to happen. The driving licence changes come into effect on June 8, 2015
The driving licence you need to tow a caravan or trailer
The ability to tow a caravan or trailer will depend on the driving licence you hold. The category entitlement on your driving licence will determine the type of trailer you can tow.

Index : Towing and Towcars : Warnings for drivers just over Speed Limit - by UKCampsite.co.uk



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