Author Topic: Preston - Fishergate bus lane signs ruled ‘not adequate’ as appeals upheld  (Read 1995 times)

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Offline Web Admin

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Fishergate bus lane signs ruled ‘not adequate’ as appeals upheld


The new bus lane cameras at the end of Fishergate. £60 if you break the rules.

Six motorists who appealed against having to pay fines for ‘being in a bus lane’ in Fishergate have had their appeals upheld.

The Traffic Penalty Tribunal today (March 9) deemed that the signage on the approach to Fishergate from Lune Street, Chapel Street and Fox Street is not adequate to warn motorists of the restriction which operates from 11am until 6pm.

There are 300 outstanding appeals to be dealt with following the decision.

Caroline Sheppard, chief parking adjudicator, comments: “These two cases (Preston and an instance in Nottingham) illustrate the work of the Traffic Penalty Tribunal Adjudicators where motorists have been penalised for driving in a bus lane.

“While most cases are about a £60 penalty, the outcome can have significant implications for councils and motorists.

“Appealing is simple through the TPT award-winning online appeals system, and motorists can upload evidence and view the council case online. There are no costs or charges.

“The independent lawyer adjudicator can communicate with the parties through messaging to clarify the issues and will usually issue a decision within two or three weeks.”

Introducing the bus lanes has netted the county council thousands of pounds a week in fines, with the first full week of operation seeing nearly 8,000 fines issued.

Stephen Knapp, adjudicator for the decision, said in his findings: “I am not satisfied that the signing taken as a whole but particularly at the point where the bus street restriction begins is adequate.

“This is in the context of a major road traffic scheme which changed the appearance of Fishergate and the direction of travel for vehicles on Mount Street and Chapel Street.

“I find that the single sign on the nearside at the point where the restriction begins did not reasonably bring the new restriction to the attention of these appellants or drivers generally.”

Cabinet member for highways and transport county councillor John Fillis said: “We have only received the decision this afternoon and we are looking into the implications for this scheme.”

http://www.blogpreston.co.uk/2017/03/fishergate-bus-lane-signs-ruled-not-adequate-as-appeals-upheld/

Offline Web Admin

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Fishergate bus lane cameras will be OFF as refunds given



Preston’s controversial Fishergate bus lane is to stay in place but the cameras are being turned OFF.

Lancashire County Council is facing the prospect of refunding thousands of drivers their penalty tickets after a parking inspector found they had deployed ‘inadequate signage’.

Six appeals were upheld on Thursday (9 March) and the county council has now announced two major changes.

The first is that anyone receiving a penalty notice for the first time, so if you drove down the bus lane in say January and received one ticket, you can apply for a refund. The county council says this is a ‘gesture of goodwill’.

The second is no camera enforcement is to take place from NOW until mid-April when the scheme is being formally reviewed.

Read more: Now Cannon Street’s getting the Fishergate look

Cabinet member for highways and transport county councillor John Fillis said: “The quickest way to contact us is through our website, stating the circumstance in which people received the penalty. If that is in keeping with the adjudicator’s decision, based on the signing, then we will give people their money back.

“These measures will stay in place while we review consultation responses and look into measures such as extra signing, following the adjudicator’s findings. We won’t use cameras to enforce this bus lane while we review it and look into options.

“This means that unauthorised vehicles are still restricted from using this section between 11am and 6pm. And we ask people to respect this.

“Our aim was always to improve the traffic flow. We didn’t want to issue any Penalty Charge Notices, but they’re an important way to enforce these changes.

“We’re clear that these changes have significantly improved the city centre in many ways. Fishergate has become a more pleasant place for pedestrians and it has helped to reduce traffic building up in parts of the city centre at the busiest times. Bus operators have told us that they’re very happy with these changes.

“This has also helped air quality, thanks to a reduction in queuing vehicles.

“There has been a reported increase in footfall, and we’ve seen new shops and businesses coming into the city centre.”



Independent adjudicator for the parking appeals Stephen Knapp said after reviewing the appeals said: “I am not satisfied that the signing taken as a whole but particularly at the point where the bus street restriction begins is adequate.”

How to apply for a refund

There’s now a dedicated section on the county council’s website where you can challenge a ticket received for driving down the Fishergate bus lane.

You must challenge a ticket by 13 April.

What do you think about the decision? Let us know in the comments below

http://www.blogpreston.co.uk/2017/03/fishergate-bus-lane-cameras-will-be-off-as-refunds-given/

Offline scalyback

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We didn’t want to issue any Penalty Charge Notices

They must have been near suicide then, having to issue 8000 of them in the first week.

Offline DastardlyDick

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They've admitted - a!beit very late - that they f***ed up and are offering refunds can't say fairer than that.

Online The Bald Eagle

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They've admitted - a!beit very late - that they f***ed up and are offering refunds can't say fairer than that.

But why should you have to apply for one, and only if you hear about it in the press? And why such a short time frame (13th April)?

They should be taking an active role in contacting those who paid and inviting them to apply for refunds, and any monies left over should be given to a local charity.

Councils should not be allowed to benefit from what are effectively the proceeds of crime. If I picked your pocket and was caught in the act, should I be allowed to keep the cash? (That's a rhetorical question by the way).
WE ARE WATCHING YOU

Offline DastardlyDick

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I agree, in an ideal world, people shouldn't have to apply. But in the world we all live in people are, quite rightly, concerned about who has their information and what they are using it for, therefore there are limits on how long anyone can hold data for - to give you an example, I volunteer for a well known Animal Rescue Charity, if someone wishes to rehome from us, we can only keep their data for 3 months then we have to delete/destroy it under the Data Protection Act. Maybe Council's have to do the same with PCN records - once paid, delete?
As a complete guess, maybe 13th April is the date by which they have to close the books for the Finacial Year 2016/17?


 


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