Speed camera caught out as driver escapes fine at 179km/h in France

The radar trap’s maintenance report was missing, making its proof invalid

Speed cameras all have a ‘carnet métrologique’ that lists information about checks and repairs done on them
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A driver caught speeding at over 70km/h above the limit has escaped a fine after a court found that the speed camera’s maintenance report was missing.

The driver was registered speeding at 179km/h on the RN124 in Gers (Occitanie), over 70km/h above the speed limit.

Since January 1, speeding infractions over 50km/h are a judicial matter and can result in a fine of €1,500, six points on the licence and a suspension from driving.

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However, the unnamed driver was spared any sanction after the court ruled on January 15 that the camera’s evidence was inadmissible.

He had requested to see the camera’s ‘carnet métrologique’, which lists all the technical details about the radar trap placed near Aubiet (Gers). The authorities were unable to provide it.

Courts can only apply penalties for speeding infractions if they are certain that the detection device is reliable, which the court in Aubiet ruled was not the case due to the camera’s missing maintenance report

How can you request to see a camera’s maintenance report?

You can only request to see a camera’s carnet métrologique in court, which means it is unlikely to be of much use to contest smaller penalties.

“You have to ask for a copy of your file from the procurer,” says speed camera monitoring website radars-auto.

“This contains all the information about checks that have been made, along with any repairs to the camera.”

The court is obliged to provide this information and give you a new date for the hearing.

If the authorities cannot provide it, the case may be dismissed unless there is further evidence.

Similarly, breathalyser equipment must also have complete maintenance documentation.

“If any of these reports are missing, it constitutes a procedural irregularity,” drivers’ rights lawyer Me Rémy Josseaume told La Depeche.

The reliability of speed cameras has been called into question several times in recent months.

In a recent case, a driver caught at 275km/h on a motorway successfully avoided any penalty after arguing that the camera was not designed to catch infractions over 250km/h.

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