16 May 2018

Photos are secondary evidence

The invisible car (almost)
Motorists often think that if the council haven't managed to take photos of their car at the time that a PCN is issued then they will not have to pay the PCN due to the lack of evidence.

The council think that they can say the same thing every time 'the photos are secondary evidence and not essential'  and hope that will be enough to nudge you into paying.

This tribunal decision, 2180108307, shows that if the council can't produce adequate primary evidence (and are too lazy or stupid, or disrespectful to the tribunal, to produce their evidence) they can lose and the motorist gets their PCN cancelled.

The allegation is parking on a restricted street during prescribed hours. The Appellant says the contravention did not occur and asks for evidence of this from the authority.

The Penalty Charge Notice Civil Enforcement Officer’s notes states that a blue Volvo was observed from 11.52-11.53 and the notes state that all windows were checked, no notes were displayed, no loading seen, driver not seen, the Penalty Charge Notice was affixed to windscreen and photos taken (pt). I asked the authority for photos or an explanation as to why none were available and I have not received a response.
The onus is on the authority to satisfy me that the alleged contravention occurred. I accept that photos are secondary evidence. The other evidence provided satisfies me that the vehicle was parked on Alexandra Grove. The Penalty Charge Notice and Civil Enforcement Officer’s notes do not mention where on this street it was parked. The site report is not of any probative value in the absence of a contemporaneous note to show where it was parked. I cannot be satisfied that the alleged contravention occurred.

I allow the appeal.

The council in providing contradictory evidence in the case summary was just asking for trouble.

It takes 24 to 48 hours for the traffic warden's photos, if there are any, to be uploaded to the council website.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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