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Motorists to be repaid £1.5m in fines over illegal speed trap

Posted on 5:45 PM by Sameer Shah

Nearly 25,000 motorists are to be repaid £1.5million in fines after it emerged that a speed camera was operating illegally for ten years.

After admitting the embarrassing blunder, officials will have to track down every driver wrongly caught by the camera.

As well has being paid back the fines, the 24,899 drivers will also have their three penalty points revoked.



Drivers who lost their licence and their job could be in line for compensation.

The error occurred in 1997 on paperwork used to establish the exact position of the speed camera in the village of Chideock in Dorset.

The paperwork said the camera, which policed a 30mph zone, was a certain distance from Seatown Road, when it should have said Duck Street.

The error meant the speed limit was invalid - and the speed camera could not police it. The blunder went unnoticed until a judge spotted it during a speeding case in 2007. The driver won the case as a result.

The Dorset Safety Camera Partnership has spent the past two years consulting with the Government as to whether the ruling applied to all other cases. Yesterday officials admitted it did.

Alan Dawe, the 55-year-old lorry driver whose case uncovered the error, said officials should have confessed to the blunder sooner.

'They just didn't want to admit they had got it wrong,' he added.

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