Why Leeds drivers could soon face a fine for going just 1mph over the speed limit

Drivers in Leeds have been warned they could reportedly face a huge fine for going just 1mph over the speed limit.

Monday, 20th August 2018, 12:10 pm
Updated Monday, 20th August 2018, 12:15 pm
West Yorkshire Police catching speeding motorists

Traditionally, many police forces have employed a 'buffer zone' on speed limits, where a driver wouldn't normally be punished if a driver is going less than 10 per cent + 2mph over.

-> Police catch four burglars asleep in stolen car near LeedsThis would mean a 70mph road would need a driver to be travelling at 79mph before prosecution kicked in.

However, it has always been up to the discretion of each police force whether they want to issue a ticket, even at 2mph over.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

West Yorkshire Police catching speeding motorists

Police are now reportedly launching an official review into the 'buffer zone'. According to the Mail on Sunday, the national roads policing chief is said to be favour of scrapping it.

Chief Constable Anthony Bangham reportedly believes the existing protections sends out to the wrong signal and could be contributing to the increasing amount of injuries on the roads.

In the report, seen by the Mail on Sunday, he warned: "We need to change our messaging and ensure greater consistency of approach when dealing with those who exceed the speed limit.'

-> Driver flees scene after BMW crashes into traffic lights in Leeds"The existing speed enforcement guidance (in particular the now publicly stated 10% + 2 allowance) could in fact be encouraging driving at these more dangerous higher speeds rather than the actual speed limits.

"If properly understood and applied, the guidance may provide forces with the necessary flexibility but over time its rigid application and understanding are often misunderstood, with an expectation that the 'norm' is 'it is OK to speed."

If the buffer zone is abolished it could mean that drivers could be punished for going just 1mph over the limit in every force area.

However, police leaders are reportedly against the proposals who believe it would not be proportionate or realistic to enforce the rules.

Currently, most people caught speeding will be classed as committing a 'minor offence' and will receive a Fixed Penalty Notice of a £100 fine and three points on your licence.

Drivers can often dodge the points if they opt for a speed awareness course if it's their first offence or haven't attended a course within the last three years.

Sometimes, however, the punishment can be more severe and you could be prosecuted in court leading to a higher fine, more points on your licence or even a disqualification.

The police will usually only opt to prosecute if you are considered a 'serious offender' and have either severely exceeded the speed limit or have repeatedly committed the offence.