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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Foreign cars in the UK - No Congestion charge, no fear speed camara's & unpaid fines

This recent headline has once again raised the topic of whether drivers of foreign registered vehicles are
flouting Congestion charges, parking fines, being nabbed by gantry mounted or fixed roadside Speed
Camera's and a host of other penalties, for which the primary means of obtaining the name and
address of the driver is derived from the number plate of their car.

The Dart Charge on the M25 is a case in point - up until November 2014 drivers crossing the Thames
at Dartford had to stop at a toll booth to pay the Dart Charge but due to the obvious congestion
problems this caused on the M25, it was changed to an online charge backed up by ANPR camera's
mounted across the motorway; to enforce the rule and fine those drivers who crossed the
Dart bridges without paying ( although crossing the Dart bridges are free for traffic crossing over
between 10pm and 6am )

BBC News - More than a million foreign drivers don't pay the M25 Dartford bridge charge

In London the Congestion charge has frankly never been enforced against foreign registered vehicles,
as entry authorisation and penalties cannot be issued to non-UK number plates using ANPR.
So how Dart Charge hoped to enforce it when London has given up - I don't know.

Of course these foreign registered vehicles are those typically used by many Europeans on short
assignments or holiday in the UK and are therefore quite legally driving their foreign registered cars
in the UK within the 6 month period; provided they can prove that they are bona fide visitors or
Non UK residents within the 6 month period.

As far as parking charges are concerned, traffic wardens in many towns and cities, have simply
not bothered in issuing a ticket on any offending foreign car, due to the obvious problems
of enforcing it on non UK registered cars.
Although saying that, there are a number of towns and cities have started to engage the services
of Debt Collection Agencies with a European wide presence with mixed results.

While Britain remained a member of the EU, there was some hope that the enforcement of Congestion
charges and fines could be harmonised across Europe, although even here the UK along with the
Republic of Ireland and Denmark have chosen to opt out of such arrangements.

Now with Britain leaving the EU by the end of March 2019, it's become highly noticeable that
the British government, along with other UK enforcement agencies, are using Brexit as an excuse
to kick the issue into the long grass; and the prospect of Britain co-operating in any European
wide effort, looks particularly forlorn as the UK has it's heart set on bolstering her legal sovereignty.
 

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Well that was the plan (at the Dartford crossing) to ease congestion but the reality is anything but that.
How is a visitor to the UK who may well not speak English go about logging on here (or there) to pay the crossing fee, they may not be tech savvy (possible) so just forget all about the issue by the next junction.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Well that was the plan (at the Dartford crossing) to ease congestion but the reality is anything but that.
How is a visitor to the UK who may well not speak English go about logging on here (or there) to pay the crossing fee, they may not be tech savvy (possible) so just forget all about the issue by the next junction.
Which begs the question - why not have barcodes on Car roofs which identifies the car owner and perhaps
could even be used as a means of making an automatic contactless payment, from the drivers preferred
method of payment; when going through toll charging roads.
Thereby making the toll booth redundant and not beholden on the driver to remember he or she went down
a toll road and needs to pay or face a fine should they forget.

Barcodes on Cars
 

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Which begs the question - why not have barcodes on Car roofs which identifies the car owner and perhaps
could even be used as a means of making an automatic contactless payment, from the drivers preferred
method of payment; when going through toll charging roads.
Therefore making the toll booth redundant and not beholden on the driver to remember he or she went down
a toll road and needs to pay or face a fine should they forget.

Barcodes on Cars
None runner at the moment (IMO) but will no doubt be enforced once we are all chipped for our (?) protection ......... :rolleyes:
The previous system worked & works all across Europe, the sheer level of vehicles trying to cross the Thames is the problem & not the toll booths.
Vehicles going north and trying to get them through the pipe (mind you going south is not a lot better) was, and is, the problem.
Next crossing going north is the Blackwall that was built by the Victorians & has bends in it so the horses that it was designed for would not get to upset (so i have read)
At the very least another crossing is needed but that can has been kicked down the road for the last 30 years.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Many British motorists caught on Speed camera's, while on holiday on the continent have come home
to a hefty fine for the first time this year.
It is estimated that half a million UK motorists will face prosecution for driving offences in France alone.

In many EU countries including France, responsibility for paying the speeding fines lies with the vehicle
owner who might not necessarily be the driver, at the time of the speeding offence.
Whereas in the UK, the responsibility lies with drivers rather than registered car owners. This means
that by a quirk of law, UK police will still not be able to fine drivers from the EU.

Breaking speed limits by more than 31mph can result in fines of up to €750 under reforms, which came
into force in 2015.

The Telegraph - British motorists face £640 Speeding fines this year
 

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Many British motorists caught on Speed camera's, while on holiday on the continent have come home
to a hefty fine for the first time this year.
It is estimated that half a million UK motorists will face prosecution for driving offences in France alone.

In many EU countries including France, responsibility for paying the speeding fines lies with the vehicle
owner who might not necessarily be the driver, at the time of the speeding offence.
Whereas in the UK, the responsibility lies with drivers rather than registered car owners. This means
that by a quirk of law, UK police will still not be able to fine drivers from the EU.

Breaking speed limits by more than 31mph can result in fines of up to €750 under reforms, which came
into force in 2015.

The Telegraph - British motorists face £640 Speeding fines this year
Hi,
Zero chance of that being enforced in the UK on fines incurred in France, for instance.
If I were living in the UK and received a fine letter from France - it would go straight in the bin!
Cheers
Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Hi,
Zero chance of that being enforced in the UK on fines incurred in France, for instance.
If I were living in the UK and received a fine letter from France - it would go straight in the bin!
Cheers
Steve
That's an interesting point - although in view of all the moans and groans of ( for instance ) diplomatic staff
from various embassies in London not paying their parking fine's, congestion charges and a host of other
motoring offence's - as they say it's not enforceable - doesn't make it right.

We have to consider the moral high ground somewhere and as many ( law abiding ) posters have hammered home the point that when in Spain - you must do, this that and the other, to stay on the right side of Spanish law.

It would seem churlish ( for eg ) to consequently take advantage of the inadequacies of the UK authorities
( to deal with foreign EU plated cars ) by the same British Expats using their Spanish car to visit
friends and family in the UK & simply not bother to pay for parking at the Council car parking meters,
etc, etc because, UK Councils cannot fine me when using my Spanish car.
 
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