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Speeding fine. No driver identified.

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Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,921 ✭✭✭ Gophur


    A Company cannot be held liable for penalty points and cannot be forced to identify a driver. You may be fined.

    It may get a day in Court for you, but if you get a solicitor to plead that the identity of the driver is unknown, despite your best efforts, you should be OK.


  • Registered Users Posts: 929 ✭✭✭ Shelli2


    I don't think people should be accusing you of lying, but irresponsibility certainly. As a manager surely you should have a system in place to know who is driving what at all times. And definately whoever was driving the van knows and is not owning up, so they are lying.

    Anyway, back to your question. Yes, the director of the company will be liable for the points if he does not nominate someone. I've had first hand exerience of this in the company I used to work for, the director was taken to court and had a larger fine imposed, the judge did not look favourably on him, said he had wasted court time.

    If there are 4 directors I'm not sure how this would work, also the point made earlier, if the director has no licence? Although, can a company buy vehicles and insure them if the main policy holder (whom I'm guessing would be the director) has no licence? Not sure how business policies work.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,921 ✭✭✭ Gophur


    Shelli2 wrote: »
    ........... Yes, the director of the company will be liable for the points if he does not nominate someone. ..........

    Check this out, first.

    The Legislation refers to a person, not a company.

    Read this article
    http://archives.tcm.ie/businesspost/2004/11/14/story426603463.asp


  • Registered Users Posts: 89 ✭✭ ajamesr


    Shelli2 wrote: »
    As a manager surely you should have a system in place to know who is driving what at all times. And definately whoever was driving the van knows and is not owning up, so they are lying.

    NO. We have no system in place to keep track of this. When I came in about 3 years ago, no system was in place and until now it had never occured to me that one would be needed or was legally required - in fact I am still not sure that one is legally required.
    We have two vans. One large for long distance jobs, and one small for little trips, shop runs, customer drop of and collection etc etc.
    I honestly don't beleive that whoever was driving knows for sure that it was them. As I said before, the road were the offence took place is right outside our door and therefore everyone that uses the van would use that road and basically everyone has a valid argument why it would not be them and could be someone else. I get the impression also that were we to nominate someone that we thought was driving, that that person could then accuse us of falsly identifying them as the driver without any proof.


  • Registered Users Posts: 929 ✭✭✭ Shelli2


    ajamesr wrote: »
    NO. We have no system in place to keep track of this. When I came in about 3 years ago, no system was in place and until now it had never occured to me that one would be needed or was legally required - in fact I am still not sure that one is legally required.
    We have two vans. One large for long distance jobs, and one small for little trips, shop runs, customer drop of and collection etc etc.
    I honestly don't beleive that whoever was driving knows for sure that it was them. As I said before, the road were the offence took place is right outside our door and therefore everyone that uses the van would use that road and basically everyone has a valid argument why it would not be them and could be someone else. I get the impression also that were we to nominate someone that we thought was driving, that that person could then accuse us of falsly identifying them as the driver without any proof.

    I do sympathise with you, it's a tricky situation. As I said, I've seen it before, and it was only after the director was given the points on his licence that we had systems put in place.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 12,157 ✭✭✭✭ Drummerboy08


    Thank christ I dont have to deal with this one!

    We have a driver assigned to each car in work - obviously they are the only drivers of the vehicle most of the time, so its easy to keep track of. When it comes to pooled vehicles its a different kettle of fish.

    I am genuinely surprised that the picture is not of good enough quality to at least help identify the driver. I got in a speeding fine not too long ago, where the driver of the car was female. We contacted the driver and told her and she said "Yep, that was me, send it on". We did so, but a few days later the fine came back, with the enlarged photo and a little note saying "unless your female driver has a wierd sense of fashion, most women don't wear a shirt and tie to work" :D

    I'd try to eliminate the drivers who couldnt have been driving - those on calls, out of the office etc. Surely someone knows when they took the car?


  • Registered Users Posts: 89 ✭✭ ajamesr


    Thank christ I dont have to deal with this one!



    I'd try to eliminate the drivers who couldnt have been driving - those on calls, out of the office etc. Surely someone knows when they took the car?

    Unfortunately all staff were in the depot that afternoon. Some had been out earlier in the day doing some jobs but by the afternoon everyone was in the depot. As I mentioned before, the fact that it happened within 30sec of the depot makes it difficult to be certain of who was driving. It could have just been someone going to get milk, or any number of small errands. When your not watching for who's jumping in and out of the van to run here and there for these small little trips its impossible to say with any certainty who it was. And in fairness to the lads there should be some evidence to show them who was at fault rather than just guessing at who we think might have been in the van at that time.
    The fact is WE have no hard evidence or proof of who was driving and the Gardai can provide no hard evidence or proof of who was driving - should I be really asked to give a good guess who was driving? Or should any of the lads be asked to volunteer that it was them when they themselves could not be sure?
    Had the offence taken place say 10 or 15 miles away in a particular village or on a main road leading to a nearby town then we would not have much trouble identifying the driver. We have a log of what jobs are done where and when and who did that job - so an offence taking place further away could be traced back, and even without a photo the fitter would be reasonable to admit that it had to be him. But so close to the depot makes it impossible to be sure because it was most likely a short trip of 5 or 10 mins, before someone else heads off for another short trip. That small van is constantly on the go for loads of such small runs around the place.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,041 ✭✭✭✭ CiniO


    The whole system seems to be bit strange and that causes problems.
    Because how can they assume, that if you can't identify driver it was the owner.
    Nonsense - owner might even never drive this car.

    For comparision i'll tell ya how it works in Poland.
    If someone get a picture from speed camera, and driver can't be identified by the owner (bad quality picture, face unknown to the owner, picture from the back, etc.) then the owner is liable for not disclosing a drivers detaild.
    In other words, owner (no matter if it's a company or private person) is required to remember or have logged how was driving his car and when. If he doesn't in case of a speed camera picture, he get's penalty (just money, no points) for not disclosing driver's details.
    Usually that penalty is bigger then speeding ticket.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 6,097 ✭✭✭ johnos1984


    OP out of interest are you not legally required by your insurer to have a log of all the people who driver your company vehicles and when they are doing so in case your vehicles are involved in any incidents?


  • Registered Users Posts: 89 ✭✭ ajamesr


    johnos1984 wrote: »
    OP out of interest are you not legally required by your insurer to have a log of all the people who driver your company vehicles and when they are doing so in case your vehicles are involved in any incidents?

    No such requirement in place. Just a list of drivers who will drive the vehicles throughout the year and copies of their licences. And as far as I can tell there is no legal requirement to do so either.
    Most companies may do this for their own reasons or it may be the case with many companies that a vehicle is the responsibilty of one person but we have 2 vans and the small one in particular is driven a lot by everyone for many various reasons.
    As I said before usually it wouldn't be a huge issue but the close proximity to the depot opens it up in a way that everyone would have a fair case to say that someone else could have been driving it for that few minutes.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,570 rebel.ranter


    As I said before a director must take responsibility, if a director has no license or has a UK license (like one of our ex-directors had) then the director is liable for the fine & no penalty points are issued.
    The reason a director must take responsibility is because they ate deemed to be ultimately in charge. By not having a proper log system in place (a small diary in the van would do) you as a durector have effectively taken responsibility for anything that happens with that vehicle. I don't understand how this is not clear.
    As to which director, one of you has to stand up & be counted, in some companies it might be clear cut who takes responsibility, e.g. If the vehicle belonged to a technology department then the technology director assumes responsibility. If one of the directors assumed control of the fleet then this is the director who assumes responsibilty. Oh, by assuming responsibility I don't mean they pay the fine & take the points, they could do that but really they should take whatever action is necessary to resolve.
    You (or one of the other 3 directors) will have to wait for a summons to arrive, then go to court to plead your case. This offense has been logged in pulse & no Garda can resolve now, it has to go through to the end, i.e. Court if the fine is not paid.

    You have two options:

    1. Draw straws in the office as to who will take the penalty points.
    2. One of you as a director go court to plead your case. I suggest you put a log system for the van in place (e.g. mini diary) & tell the judge it won't happen again. Perhaps he will just hit you with the fine & a bit of a lecture if you're lucky.
    I have been responsible for a fleet of pool vehicles for the past 5 years & it was impressed on us from the start of penalty points (when I was just a pool vehicle driver, not manager) that we needed to record all usage. The company I work for take all these types of things very seriously & at the time invested in a serious tracking system to overcome these problems, I distinctly remember the director saying that he put these systems in place si that he did not end up in court taking the fall.
    I genuinely believe you that you don't know who was driving but you are responsible, read the article I posted.
    Best of luck.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,946 BeardyGit


    ajamesr wrote: »
    The fact that its the road right outside our depot makes it very hard to narrow it down. If it was 10 or 15 miles away it would be easier to identify. And that particular van is very much a small run around van used regularly for short runs. In fairness none of them are cowards, just unwilling to take responsibility without some evidence that it was them. They are good lads that don't usually argue or cause trouble, but they are well within their rights in this instance.
    In fairness I wouldn't know who was in the van TODAY at 16:00, let alone a week ago.

    If you have a depot with a number of different people working there, surely you have CCTV on the premises? It's already been suggested but you've not replied as far as I can see.

    Also, you can get a digital 'logging' key box to install in the depot with multiple access codes. The keybox will log who's opened the box, date, time etc. That would allow you easily find out who had the key at a particular time and date. One log entry when it's opened to take the key, one when it's returned. Make each driver personally responsible for obtaining and returning the key for the van from the keybox at the beginning and end of each period of use.

    It'll add literally seconds to the start and finish of a trip, but remove any future ambiguity over who was the responsible keyholder at the time of a penalty being incurred. Warn them not to just pass the keys over, or they'll carry the can if the person they give them to is done for speeding, parking etc.

    No PIN, no key, no journey, no hassle for you/directors.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,248 ✭✭✭✭ Esel


    ^ That digital entry key box system sounds like it would be very effective.

    Not your ornery onager



  • Registered Users Posts: 58 ✭✭✭ deargas


    Is there a follow up to this yet. I'd be interested to know how the court case went. Surely it has to actually go to court and be tested.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,821 ✭✭✭✭ Our man in Havana


    Until legislation to compel naming the driver comes in nothing can be done to companies who don't name.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,961 Hooch


    Haddockman wrote: »
    Until legislation to compel naming the driver comes in nothing can be done to companies who don't name.

    Section 107.......

    I havint read the entire thread but there is precedence for this. The company will be prosecuted under Section 107 and a sizable fine is usually given......a fine that is usually upheld by the Circuit court. The disqualification order that usually follows a Sec 107 prosecution is not taken into account in this case......although company directors and transport managers have been threatened with prison time.....I have never seen it happen.


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