Polite-Vest

Bikers wrongfully charged over polite vest

Motorcyclist Darren Emanuel, 47, an independent financial consultant, has been a biker for many years and was riding his white, ex-police BMW R1200RT when he was stopped by a police officer who had seen him from the opposing carriageway.

The officer concluded that Emanuel was trying to impersonate an officer

After the officer checked the bike over, he then turned to the clothing choice of Emanuel. At the time, Darren was wearing his “Polite Think Bike” vest and a white helmet. Combined with the look of his motorcycle, the officer concluded that Emanuel was attempting to impersonate an officer. The officer made notes and sent Darren on his way.

Only after Emanuel later made a complaint to the police about his treatment was he called into a police station about the incident. He was then charged with wearing a police uniform, which was calculated to deceive, and the case went to court.

Darren was ordered to pay costs

The court saw that Darren was not attempting to deceive the public, but was ordered to pay £670 in costs.

The story was then blown out of proportion by the media, and even people from other countries heard of Darren’s story.

“I had friends in other countries who read about it,” Emanuel said. “After the news of the conviction appeared online, my job contract wasn’t renewed, and my landlord served a notice on my house.”

‘Polite’ vests have since come under intense scrutiny. However, a Met Police spokesperson exclaimed back in 2013 that “It does not look like a police uniform. It is merely a high visibility jacket, so it would not be illegal.”

Despite appealing against the conviction, the damage had been done

Emanuel successfully appealed the conviction two weeks later, but the damage was already done. Following his appeal, Emanuel took out a libel case against the newspapers and websites he says it defamed him, which was later settled out of court, however, many of those publications have refused to print corrections, and Emanuel says he remains out of pocket.

He expressed: “While these items of clothing are perfectly legal, wearing one caused me a great deal of trouble, anxiety, expense, loss of my home and loss of work’.

If you need legal assistance with a motorcycle offence, contact SorryMate today and discover how we can help

Speed-Camera-by-County

Do you know your county’s speed camera thresholds?

Auto Express has recently released the findings of a recent study that they conducted into the speeds you must travel at in order to trigger a speed camera. The results are interesting and vary from county to county.

Auto Express sent a freedom of information requests to the UK’s 45 police forces to ask just how fast you must be travelling to be hit with a ticket from the cameras.

They claim that the majority of forces that responded advised that a camera would only activate when vehicles exceeded the speed limit by 10% + 2mph – 35mph on a 30mph road and 79mph on a motorway – which is in line with the Association of Chief of Police guidelines.

While this information may seem like a green light to get where you’re going more quickly, the report also reveals that not all forces use the scale and some forces declined to reveal the threshold at all.

So what are the thresholds?

Below is a list of some of the information that was gathered during the study!

 

Force                 Number of Cameras         Threshold

Avon and Somerset4110% + 2mph
Bedfordshire38Would not reveal the threshold
Cambridgeshire32Would not reveal the threshold
Cheshire1510% + 2mph
Cleveland410% + 2mph
Derbyshire1810% + 2mph
Devon and Cornwall9810% + 2mph
Durham0 fixed10% + 2mph
Essex63Don’t use a standard threshold
Greater Manchester235Would not reveal the threshold
Gwent2110% + 2mph
Hampshire3610% + 2mph
Hertfordshire53Would not reveal the threshold
Kent10910% + 2mph
Lancashire3410% + 3mph
Leicestershire3010% + 2mph
Merseyside1810% + 2mph
Metropolitan Police/TfL80510% + 3mph
Norfolk2610% + 2mph
North Wales2810% + 2mph
Northumbria5510% + 2mph
Nottinghamshire48Refused to confirm if the threshold exists
Police Service of Northern Ireland1210% + 2mph
Scotland173Refused to confirm if the threshold exists
South Wales13710% + 2mph
South Yorkshire2510% + 2mph
Staffordshire286Would not reveal the threshold
Suffolk410% + 2mph
Thames Valley29410% + 2mph
Warwickshire2810% + 2mph
West Mercia2310% + 2mph
West Midlands33Would not reveal the threshold
West Yorkshire40210% + 2mph

Can you trust your bike’s speedometer?

For the most part, yes. The modern bikes should always over-read the speed that you are travelling. For example, when travelling at an indicated 70mph on your bike, a GPS device would usually clock you at around 67mph.

Manufacturers are bound by legislation that means a vehicle’s speedo cannot underestimate the vehicles speed, most over-read by a few percents. Old vehicles may have much less accurate speedometers. It could be due to wear and tear, less accurate manufacturing methods or poor maintenance, all of which could add up to a speedo that wanders between speeds giving a very inaccurate reading.

If you need legal assistance in relation to a motorcycling offence, don’t forget to contact SorryMate by clicking here.

Youngest Motorcycle Dealer in UK

18 Year Old Becomes UK’s Youngest Motorcycle Dealership Owner

Wildmans Motorcycles in Spilsby, Lincolnshire, announced last month that a former apprentice of the shop was to become the new owner of the dealership. On May 20th, Chris Lake, who has since turned 19, took over as head mechanic and owner of the premises.

When speaking out publicly, Chris said “I’ve got to try, haven’t I? If I don’t try now, then I won’t know what could’ve been. I don’t want to sit back and not have a go.”

Chris had been working at the dealership since he was 13 years

Since 2005, Peter McDowell owned the premises (started trading in 1926 as a blacksmith’s forge) and has now chosen to hand over ownership to Lake, who has been working for the firm since he was 13 when he started as a Saturday boy.

Chris has made a big step up from Saturday boy to owner. It goes to show that with hard work and perseverance, you can achieve! It may even inspire others to have a go, perhaps not owning a dealership, but to work on their bikes. Starting with the basics and progressing from there.

The former owner will still assist Chris in his new role

Chris will be assisted in running the business by Alex Fixter, who will undertake fixing and repair jobs. Whilst Peter will be retiring, he will jump in to assist Chris in his new venture, as times get busy and the workload increases.

Since taking the company over in May, Chris has also introduced a new recovery service to the list of services already available at the garage. Chris will run this service at all times, Alex will run the mechanical side of the shop, and Chris’s mother will help to run the motorcycle sales side of the business.

We wish Chris luck in his new venture and hope it is a prosperous business opportunity for the young man.

If you know of a younger dealership owner, we would love to hear from you!

PostPhoto-BeMoto

Free uninsured loss with SMIDSY and BeMoto

SorryMate andBeMoto Insurance to provide unrivalled service. With no broker fees if you wish to make changes to your policy mid-term, such as changing your bike or moving home.

It’s important to have insurance your vehicle. Bike accidents aren’t cheap. Insurance is really important to protect yourself against any loss if you are involved in an accident. Bikers understand more than anyone how stressful heavy bills are after an accident.

Get Free uninsured loss with BeMoto

SorryMate is offering FREE uninsured loss recovery when you buy BeMoto road insurance and quote “SMIDSY”. You can also receive up to 90 days EU cover per trip as standard and titanium cover for just £40 extra – which includes UK & EU RAC breakdown, £1.5k Helmet & Leathers and £20k Personal Accident cover.

In addition, you can benefit from discounts on other non-road insurance, including SORN and track day bike damage, plus a wide range of available products for you and your bike, as well as declared modification coverage for modifications.

 

To collect a quote from our experienced team, give us a call on 0808 1 642 160 or email bemoto@sorrymate.com.

 

PostPhoto-PotHoles

Surge of Potholes Affecting UK Roads

Roads across the country have once again been significantly impacted by the winter weather. The UK has seen a surge of potholes appearing more and more frequently.

The UK is said to be experiencing a pothole epidemic

Potholes are caused by a structural failure in the road surface. They are usually caused by water in the underlying soil structure, but they can also be caused by continuous traffic passing over the affected area.

Potholes are a major issue for bikers on the roads, especially for bikers and cyclists. Bikers will often risk being flung from their motorcycles by going over them, or risk being hit by swerving around them.

Figures show one in three vehicles are damaged by potholes

The AA recently released figures showing that one in three drivers has had their vehicle damaged by potholes. However, only one in five people reported the potholes.

Potholes can lead to damage to tyres and bodywork, but for motorcyclists, they can be potentially fatal. Bikers rarely consider putting in a claim against the council in respects to unkept road surfaces. As a result of this, many simply don’t try to reclaim the cost of the damage caused to their bike.

SorryMate can help you make a claim

Making a claim against local councils can be a daunting process. However, we can do all the work for you. SorryMate’s dedicated biking solicitors boast years of experience in dealing with motorbike accidents caused by potholes or other types of damage to the road.

If you have been involved in an accident caused by a pothole in the road and wish to make a claim then give us a call or submit a form by clicking here.